Antique beer steins, mugs and tankards are prized for their craftsmanship and colorful ornamentation and scenes. They can be found in many styles and materials, including copper, pewter, silver, pottery, ivory, porcelain, glass and wood. Many steins were imported to the U.S. from Germany in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, especially from the city of Mettlach, whose potteries produced thousands of the vessels.

The beer stein had its origins in the mid-1500's along the Rhine river in Germany, when small towns began producing functional drinking vessels decorated by enameling and glazing. Each town or area adding their own flair or nuance. By the 1860s, factories around Westerwald and Dresden began producing ornamental steins for display, and continued doing so until WW1, from which the industry never fully recovered.

Lately there's been renewed interest in collecting beer steins with unique designs, including reproductions of works by famous artists. Designs reflect everything from historical battles to comical faces and even car racing and baseball. While many steins have been produced and marketed as collectibles, the most valuable continue to be pre-1900 German handmade steins.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Beer Stein Library

Beer Stein Library

Though partially restricted to members-only, this site has a huge amount of free, publicly available and incredibly… [read review or visit site]

Red Fox Chapter

Red Fox Chapter

The guys at the Connecticut Chapter of the Brewery Collectibles Club of America have created a full-on tribute to t… [read review or visit site]

Bottle Cap Index

Bottle Cap Index

Assembled by Gunther Rademacher with the help of several other contributors, this collection of over half a million… [read review or visit site]

British Beer Labels

British Beer Labels

This pre-1965 collection is organized alphabetically by brand and contains scans of seemingly thousands of beautif… [read review or visit site]

Norbert Lamping's collection of 600+ ceramic bottle stoppers, Hutter stoppers, swingtops, swivel stoppers, and ligh… [read review or visit site]

Bock Beer Labels

Bock Beer Labels

A quick tour of pre-Prohibition bock beer label designs with nice, high resolution scans. Do the whole slide show o… [read review or visit site]

Trappist Beers and Monks

Trappist Beers and Monks

An interesting site dedicated to Trappist beers and the history of the development of beer brewed by Trappist Bened… [read review or visit site]

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Recent News: Beer Steins

Source: Google News

Sonnenalp hosts Bavarian Springtoberfest on Saturday
Vail Daily News, April 12th

VAIL — Raise your stein and say “Prost!” at the Sonnenalp Springtoberfest, an Oktoberfest-style celebration happening at the Sonnenalp Hotel on Saturday from 1 to 9 p.m.. The Sonnenalp is collaborating with Paulaner Munchen, the official beer of...Read more

The Rezillos bringing new wave to new audiences
Chorley Guardian, April 11th

Do they still have props like the motorbikes and the Dalek in their old live shows? “I've still got the bikes, and the Dalek's somewhere in the garage. It can be a bit claustrophobic inside though. “Once, I rode through an audience then hit a patch of...Read more

Food Notes: For the week of April 9
The Providence Journal, April 8th

Julians Providence, 318 Broadway, Providence, (401) 861-1770, will hold a vintage beer dinner Sunday, April 20, at 6 p.m. The cost is $99 plus tax and gratuity. Rick's Roadhouse, 370 Richmond St., Providence, has launched its...Read more

Fun, adventure await forest visitors
Alpenhorn News, April 3rd

These include the Lake Arrowhead Village Summer Concert series, Blue Jay Jazz Festival series, the Wooden Boat and Antique Car Show, Art and Wine Festival, Wine and Stein walks, Mountain Top Days, Jamboree Days and fireworks shows on July 4th, ...Read more

Dresden: The city that rose again on the Elbe
Solar News PH, March 30th

Visitors today to the German city that proudly, if a bit cheekily, calls itself "Florence on the Elbe," in a nod to its Italianate architecture, could almost think the scene was prescient of Dresden's resurrection since World War Two. Imprisoned at a...Read more

Germany's Dresden - the city that rose again on the Elbe
CANOE, March 29th

Visitors today to the German city that proudly, if a bit cheekily, calls itself "Florence on the Elbe", in a nod to its Italianate architecture, could almost think the scene was prescient of Dresden's resurrection since World War Two. Imprisoned at a...Read more

Trip tips: Dresden, the city that rose again on the Elbe
The Malay Mail Online, March 28th

Visitors today to the German city that proudly, if a bit cheekily, calls itself “Florence on the Elbe”, in a nod to its Italianate architecture, could almost think the scene was prescient of Dresden's resurrection since World War Two. Imprisoned at a...Read more

Beer festivals in Europe that beer lovers cannot miss
TNT Magazine, March 24th

The city is alive with beer themed activities and for between 8-10 euros you can indulge in a beer stein or two, from one of Munich's six historic (and tasty) breweries, in a bustling beer tent. A word of ... the year's festivities. But mainly, amazing...Read more