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dave ziegler

My Memories of Kinsey Distilling

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler

Just a few of my Kinsey Distillery Memories! I will never forget one of the first days I started there I met the nurse for the plant and her telling me to try not to get hurt or need anything after 2:00-PM as after that she would be having her Whiskey and Coffee, of course she said the Doctor told her to do it for her health. The Plant was 200 acres and we drove around from warehouse to warehouse in 1941 and 1947 Ford Flat trucks hauling barrels of Wiskey to be dumped in the troughts to be sent to be blended filtered and bottled. It was just a trough with screen and we would roll the barrels on it pull the bung and dump it. If you had not been in a warehouse for days the air would be blue with fumes,and the vents never worked and it was cold in winter. The company would give us Old Sub Zero green Army Coats to wear in the winter. Way at the back of the Plant were old barns and this was where during WWII the company had kept Steers and gave them the old Mash to eat. The time clock was in the old abandoned Still building and there were two giant Tanks filled with water I was told by a boss that they did that to keep them usable if they ever ran the still again. People who had worked there had put Cat fish and suckers in the tanks and we would throw stuff in to feed them, they were real big! All the light switches in the warehouses were sealed and globes over the Light bulbs because of the fumes being flamible. For a 19 year old Kid this was amazing. There was a sort of tunnel from the boiler room to the still and when I was on the yard crew we ate our lunch there as the break room at the other end was a walk half way through the Plant. The plant had its own cement Highway running through all the way down to the river almost, ending at Mr Bryants Company Home. There were electric poles all the way and power!

Dave Z

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jeff   
jeff

Dave,

Your memories make very interesting reading. Thanks for sharing! :toast:

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler

Thank you Jeff I will write some more stuff later I have allot of Memories as I started there just out of high school barely 19 years old, so I remember things well from then my Brain is getting old now! I drank my first Bourbon there and had many a bottle gotten out of a whiskey Barrel from the old warehouses. I tried lots of Whiskeys in the old days but still think the Best I ever had was Old Hickory Bourbon they had that one down perfect! Did you ever try Old Hickory? You are most likely to young!

Dave

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SBOmarc   
SBOmarc

As a kid growing up in Philadelphia, crossing the bridge into Jersey and being able to smell the whiskey was something I will not forget.

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DrinkyBanjo   
DrinkyBanjo

What whiskey would that have been?

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BourbonJoe   
BourbonJoe
As a kid growing up in Philadelphia, crossing the bridge into Jersey and being able to smell the whiskey was something I will not forget.

Yeah, I remember those days. It was 10 cents to cross the Walt Whitman Bridge and you could smell the whiskey from Old Hickory. Today it's 3 bucks to cross the bridge and all you smell is diesel fuel. Progress.

Joe :usflag:

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TNbourbon   
TNbourbon
Yeah, I remember those days. It was 10 cents to cross the Walt Whitman Bridge and you could smell the whiskey from Old Hickory. Today it's 3 bucks to cross the bridge and all you smell is diesel fuel. Progress.

Joe :usflag:

:lol: Joe, sometimes you quite convince me you're a Renaissance Man.:cool:

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doubleblank   
doubleblank

With all this talk of Old Hickory, I went and dug out one of my bottles. It is a quart bottle, 10yo at 86 proof. Bottled by Old Hickory Distillers Co, Phila, PA, Lemont, Ill. Distilled in PA. There is also an unusual tax stamp....."U.S. Army/Open Mess". Its a tall retangular bottle. Two photos below. I may have to open this soon, or bring to the Gazebo.

Randy

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post-379-14489812749053_thumb.jpg

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler

Now that is one Good Bottle of Bourbon and if you have it and more you are very Lucky and smart to have got it and kept it! I think it was 1981 the last bottle of it rolled out of the Linfield Bottle house! Continenal Distilling/ Publicker stopped and spent the last couple years Bottling Antifreeze there, closing in I think early 1985! With the Old Hickory brand and Recipe gone forever. I worked there as I said and it was the Best as far as what I think! Thanks for sharing the Pictures, I only have a collection of Empty ones and other brands we made, and if you drink it Enjoy! It is most likely even better now with 25 more years of aging.

Dave Z

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dougdog   
dougdog
With all this talk of Old Hickory, I went and dug out one of my bottles. It is a quart bottle, 10yo at 86 proof. Bottled by Old Hickory Distillers Co, Phila, PA, Lemont, Ill. Distilled in PA. There is also an unusual tax stamp....."U.S. Army/Open Mess". Its a tall retangular bottle. Two photos below. I may have to open this soon, or bring to the Gazebo.

Randy

Old hickory is not very plentiful in California dusty corners...these are the only two I've ever found, they are the 8 years old version.

post-929-14489812749843_thumb.jpg

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler

They are nice Styled bottles do not remember that style but I remember the 8 year old stuff well It was very Smooth I drank a good bit of it working there! Surprisingly they even made a Rye version back in the Late 1930's too! Don't know how long they made that. They sold allot out west had a Distillery in Lemont IL but never found anything out about it,they were bottled were I worked they had a state of art Bottle house back then in Linfield Pa at Kinsey and closed the Bottling house in Phlia in 1965/66.

Dave Z

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dougdog   
dougdog

Dave,

First of all I must say thanks for the history you have posted here! Your experiences are great to read about.

I'm now leaning towards a West Coast Study Group theme night for "out of production" vintage bourbons and ryes for a future event.

Because of your input here on this thread, I will have more appreciation for this whiskey when one of these decanters gets opened to sample! History always makes the whiskey taste better...well, maybe...

When I found those two decanters, my Scotch teacher mentioned that was the whiskey they would buy for parties in his school days... He's 70 something

Did they make younger/pricepoint versions back when?

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler

Yes they made all differant sizes to make it afordable for College people I have a beautiful little Caraf that held one pint of Old Hickory 8 yr and was easy to pour fancy looking and just the right size for someone with little space and a low budget! When I worked there and after I was old enough to buy whatever I wanted I still ended up buying Old Hickory Because it just was one Flavorfull Bourbon, they up untill the last few years always aged all their Whiskeys in small about 30/50 gallon Barrels never really asked how much they held but thought about 50 gal. They were I think Hickory and the Barrel Stays were chared inside and also had strips inside floating to. When you wanted to open one to steal a drink you had to pull the bung and with a wood file you would file a small U on each side then when you put the bung back in be sure to put the Bung cloth back in for filtering it when you poured it or you would get a mouth full of chared wood! By filing and leaving room on the rack you could roll the barrel forward hold your Bottle always had a Pint bottle with me and it would come out just like a Pourer! It was very strong stuff so you had to know what you were doing or you could end up with Neutral sprits instead of Whiskey. I saw guys who could never stop drinking start their mornings with a few shots of Neutral spirts! I always looked for 8 to 10 year stuff it was dated on each barrel with Ink stensils on the Barrel head! When I started there they had the largest supply of aged barrels of Whiskey IN ONE SITE IN THE WORLD! I think I may tell some more memories soon as it seems people enjoy them and getting older and want to keep the History of the Kinsey Plant in Linfield alive when I am gone!

Hope this was helpful and interesting for you!

When you do open one of the Old Hickorys have a shot for Me!

Dave Z

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dougdog   
dougdog

When you do open one of the Old Hickorys have a shot for Me!

Dave Z

Dave,

It will most likely be done at study group...we'll all raise a glass to you!

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler

Doug When you do your Study group ask them about Rittenhouse Rye 100 Proof I have talked to Old timers and they have said it was one Awesome Rye Whiskey! It was another Continental / Publicker Brand but I do not think they were making it much any more when I worked there, but I remember us in the warehouse opening a Barrel of 10 year old Rye the oldtimer had set up to open and we both filled half pint bottles back then around Christmas 1969 and it was out of this world Flavorful! So that may have been stock for it! I have a 1939 Rittenhouse bottle in my collection on my work desk. If I can sometime figuer how to get a picture on here will send one of my Desk has about 18 Whiskey Bottles and 110 old Beer Cans. People in the office come down offten to look! When you crack open that Old hickory I expect it will even better with all the time it has been sealed! Also I am going to do my Part III Memories for Christmas the story of Christmas Eve 1969 the Last day we worked before the Holiday the whole Plant was drunk! Will do that in the next couple of days. Even Security was out of it back then! Hope you have a great Christmas! PS Be sure to let me know how the Old Hickory was when you try it!

Dave Z

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dougdog   
dougdog
Doug When you do your Study group ask them about Rittenhouse Rye 100 Proof I have talked to Old timers and they have said it was one Awesome Rye Whiskey! It was another Continental / Publicker Brand but I do not think they were making it much any more when I worked there, but I remember us in the warehouse opening a Barrel of 10 year old Rye the oldtimer had set up to open and we both filled half pint bottles back then around Christmas 1969 and it was out of this world Flavorful! So that may have been stock for it! I have a 1939 Rittenhouse bottle in my collection on my work desk. If I can sometime figuer how to get a picture on here will send one of my Desk has about 18 Whiskey Bottles and 110 old Beer Cans. People in the office come down offten to look! When you crack open that Old hickory I expect it will even better with all the time it has been sealed! Also I am going to do my Part III Memories for Christmas the story of Christmas Eve 1969 the Last day we worked before the Holiday the whole Plant was drunk! Will do that in the next couple of days. Even Security was out of it back then! Hope you have a great Christmas! PS Be sure to let me know how the Old Hickory was when you try it!

Dave Z

Dave, The closest rye to your description I've tasted and found, was a couple little bottles of Old Overholt, I've never found a Rittenhouse or other ryes from the Continental era on store shelves here in California.

One old bottle I found, from Continental, was a "Charter Oak"...a Bourbon...what do you recall about that label?

"When you crack open that Old hickory I expect it will even better with all the time it has been sealed!....you lost me on that one...While the fill level is excellent for a decanter,(or for any bottle that age) I'm not so sure the age in the bottle makes the whiskey any better...rather I hope that time hasn't oxidized it or made it worsen.

There will be tasting notes when "cracked".

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler

Doug I guess the reason I think it may even be better is what an oldtimer had told me many years ago there, he said if it is out of the light sealed and still air tight and not gotten hot it can even get a a bit better you may well be right, guess your tests will tell a little! Charter Oak was one of Continentals very first brands of Bourbon one of their signature brands that they called their Kentucky Straight Bourbons, it was very good bourbon had some once or twice but never compared it to Old Hickory because I just loved the flavor and body of Old Hickory! Another one of their signature Bourbons was Planters Club Kentucky Straight Bourbon they sold allot of both of them, allot of the Charter Oak in the fifties and more of the Planters club in the 60's. I wish I had a Charter Oak bottle for my collection it is one I have yet to find! If you ever find anything out about Continentals Lemont IL Distillery let me know as even when I worked there it was a mystery to us they never had any pictures the only thing we knew was some of the Bottles had it on them at the bottom on the Labels coming out of the bottling house!

Dave Z

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler
Dave, The closest rye to your description I've tasted and found, was a couple little bottles of Old Overholt, I've never found a Rittenhouse or other ryes from the Continental era on store shelves here in California.

One old bottle I found, from Continental, was a "Charter Oak"...a Bourbon...what do you recall about that label?

"When you crack open that Old hickory I expect it will even better with all the time it has been sealed!....you lost me on that one...While the fill level is excellent for a decanter,(or for any bottle that age) I'm not so sure the age in the bottle makes the whiskey any better...rather I hope that time hasn't oxidized it or made it worsen.

There will be tasting notes when "cracked".

Doug have you cracked open the Old Hickory Yet? Just now trying to buy something I have always wanted for my Collection a Label from Linfield Bourbon. They had stopped making it years before I worked there and I finally have seen a label and I have a very old Cork seal bottle I found sticking out of the ground at the place since it is totally abandon and I also have some original Tax seals I found trashed in the Bottling House so if I get it will make my own Linfield Bourbon Bottle. I was walking down by the river near where old #12 used to be and there the Bottle top was sticking out of the ground so I pulled and it came out perfect and was sealed with a pug of dirt and clean inside so it will be perfect to put with my Publicker/Contiental Collection! So sad to see the place destroyed like it is walked around it in Nov. Still remember when I left even though they had not used old #12 for Many years they still kept heat in it and sprinklers. Well this is modern USA close everything and make everything some where Else. Been very sick for 2 months my voice box is half paralised and have asthma/Broncitus. Missed 16 days from work so have not been writting here. Well when you open the old hickory have 2 shots for me! Be Well Doug

Dave Z

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler
With all this talk of Old Hickory, I went and dug out one of my bottles. It is a quart bottle, 10yo at 86 proof. Bottled by Old Hickory Distillers Co, Phila, PA, Lemont, Ill. Distilled in PA. There is also an unusual tax stamp....."U.S. Army/Open Mess". Its a tall retangular bottle. Two photos below. I may have to open this soon, or bring to the Gazebo.

Randy

Another answer about your Old Hickory Bottlle, I have found out that Continental Distilling gave allot of Whiskey Ect to the Armed sevices for nothing for the Men. I guy I know of buys allot of Old Hickory stuff when he can to donate to the old timers at the VFW he goes to for the memories! Seems them and I can't remember the other company did this all the time not so for most of them. On my Company List they also have many brands for services only!

Dave Z

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler
With all this talk of Old Hickory, I went and dug out one of my bottles. It is a quart bottle, 10yo at 86 proof. Bottled by Old Hickory Distillers Co, Phila, PA, Lemont, Ill. Distilled in PA. There is also an unusual tax stamp....."U.S. Army/Open Mess". Its a tall retangular bottle. Two photos below. I may have to open this soon, or bring to the Gazebo.

Randy

Randy Did you ever crack open your Bottle of Old Hickory and if so what do you think about it? For me when it was available and when I worked for them it was my Bourbon of choice it was always very smooth drinking whiskey!

Dave z

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler
As a kid growing up in Philadelphia, crossing the bridge into Jersey and being able to smell the whiskey was something I will not forget.
--Just a quick note when I was 20 years old I got the first paid vacation I ever had from Publicker and I went down to the old Atlantic city it was a neat place then. I will never forget driving over the Walt Whitman Bridge and seeing the large neon lit Sign above the Industrial Publicker still that said it seems the nicest people Drink old Hickory! As I drove over I remember how Proud I was that I worked for such a great company! It seems so long ago but I will always be proud to have worked For the Continental Distillery and Proud of its efforts during WWII for our country!

dave z

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler
Old hickory is not very plentiful in California dusty corners...these are the only two I've ever found, they are the 8 years old version.

Hey Randy if you decide to drink the old hickory up I would love to have one of the empty bottles and its box as I do not have that one in my collection even though I have hundreds of bottles. Let me know sometime and Be Well. Would gladly pay you something for the empty Bottle & Box

Dave Z

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mozilla   
mozilla

Here are some other great shots of Publicker items:

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dave ziegler   
dave ziegler
Here are some other great shots of Publicker items:
The shots are----also Many Thanks to Jeff for posting these for me for History Sake

1.My Corn Whiskey Barrel head

2.My Malt Mash Barrel head that found in the field and had repaired by a wood caftmans dated 1967 I had worked there a year and was 20 yrs old

3.my 1960 Old Hickory Eagle Bottle

4.& 5. The front and back of my friends Linfield Bourbon Bottle wish I had one if anyone seeing this has one to sell let me know

6.Large Stand up panel Bottle Old Hickory Ad for state stores

7.Original Frank Reilly art picture on ink plate in reverse so it can print the Colonial ad for Phila blended Whiskey solid Brass mounted on wood

8.Signs from Building P warehouse DSP#12

9.List of Glassware for sale when they quit making drinking Alcohol differant Bottles and amounts of them

10.Coopers Hammer & Coopers Hand Sledge

11.Explosion proof Switch and power in building Light Building Q

One note If anyone finds a Linfield Bourbon Bottle I would love to buy it as It is one I want for my Collection very Much having Worked there at Kinsey In Linfield

Dave

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