EXHIBITS

Prohibition Goes Nationwide

Heber J. Grant Letter, 1926
Letter from the Church of Jesus Christ president, Heber J. Grant, 1926 [Click image to enlarge.]
(Utah State University, Merrill-Cazier Library, Special Collections & Archives, Gustav Lorenz Becker Photograph Collection, P0361 Box 010, Book 01)

Despite being brewers in a nation that had legally rejected alcohol, the Beckers remained wildly popular during Prohibition. There was strong community support for their products, and Gus received as much column space as ever for his shooting antics. Albert was elected to the Utah State Legislature in 1929 and to the Ogden Chamber of Commerce in 1930. Even Heber J. Grant—president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and an outspoken advocate for Prohibition—corresponded with Gus to thank him for remaining a law-abiding citizen and to compliment him on the company’s new line of products.

Becker's Becco Illustration, c. 1920
 Becker’s Becco illustration, c. 1920 [Click image to enlarge.]
(Utah State University, Merrill-Cazier Library, Special Collections & Archives, Becker Brewing and Malting Company Records Addendum, CAINEMSS31 Addendum Series 03, Box 003, Folder 18, Item 001)

The Beckers were so successful at transitioning to other markets during Prohibition that by the time the law was repealed in 1933, they were the only surviving brewery in Utah and one of only two or three hundred in the entire country. To put that in perspective, consider the fact that there were 4,131 American breweries in 1843, and of those, almost 4,000 went out of business or consolidated with larger breweries before 1933. Being one of the country’s surviving post-Prohibition breweries was certainly no small feat.