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dave ziegler

My Memories of Kinsey Distilling

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dave ziegler

Thanks that is a very interesting twist. In 1980 the Old Hickory Label and Whiskey in stock was sold to Mr Charles Medley I talked to him about it a couple of years ago. But he sold the brand later and I guess they had it for awhile.

I would rather it never have its name used again then to see it as a blended Whiskey. If I lived down your way I might have bought it for my collection as a very odd thing, I have learned something I never knew thanks to the both of you and your research.

It is sad they tried to do that and sell it by use of its famous name as most likely a very cheap blend.

Thanks for getting that info it seems every day I find out new things.

If you ever get a chance to get some Real Old Hickory Bourbon go for it as to me it was the best of its time. I have a couple of shots left and I guess I will never have it again either. Many Thanks for the ijnfo again!

Dave

=====================================================

It Seems All The Nicest People Drink Old Hickory

America's Most Magnificent Bourbon

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bad_scientist

You're right, Dave, it was a Medley bottling. I was typing quickly and mistakenly wrote Schenley.

I've heard only good things about Old Hickory, and I would jump at the chance to get the real thing!

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dave ziegler

I am thinking about a change to the new Explosion proof early 1900's lamp I am making from the old Kinsey grain process building. The first picture is what I was going to do and the next ones are it with a 1930's pilot light under the switch. It still fits in my trunk for wiring but still no idea of what to do about a base it will have to be smaller then the other lamps base I made to fit anywhere.

Going to ask Rod what he thinks a little input is always a good thing.

1. Picture of the lamp with just switch

2. 3. Pictures of the lamp with the vintage pilot light.

Every single part on this Lamp is from Kinsey except the chrome piece that screws in the T to run the light wires out. Even the T is from the plant from Warehouse #38 NOS part found in a box.

Dave Z

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It Seems All The Nicest People Drink Old Hickory

America's Most Magnificent Bourbon

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dave ziegler

My Electrian friend Paul at work finally had the time to wire my last big & small glass globes Explosion Proof switch set ups.

Both switches are from the 1930's from Kinsey and here are pictures of them and my office with all the lights on.

1.& 2. My 1930's lever explosion proof switch with a red globe and cage

3.&4. My early 1930's one of a kind pull push Rod lever Crouse Hinds Explosion proof switch and Blue globe from O warehouse

5 through 7. shots of my desk with all the lights on.

8. my side table with its switchs.

Many thanks to my friend Paul the electricain for wiring these for an old stuburn guy who loves Kinsey Distillery. Kinsey lives at my work office and at my home for as long as I am around.

I am very thankful I could save all these things from the vandels who would have cashed them in for scrap when they are so rare and so very Historic.

Dave Z

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America's Most Magnificent Bourbon

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ethangsmith

Dave,

I went through more of my Michter's stuff and made some pretty big discoveries. It turns out that Pennco was a Schenley division and did not have any affiliation with Continental! This really confuses me since Continental was a major supplier of whiskey for Pennco and even a bottler for early Michter's products. The only thing I found was that Pennco's headquarters were at 20 South 15th Street Suite 811 in Philly. I have a letter verifying a set of blueprints that lists Pennco as the DBA for Schenley Distillers at DSP-PA-17, which is Michter's. This just keeps getting weirder!

I also came to find out they used a "3 chamber beer still" until about 1951 instead of a column still. This type of still, per Sam Komlenic, was a still that was unique to rye whiskey production and is no longer used today.

PS- I have Bird Dog for you!

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spiderblues

Had a fun time today with Dave & Andy. Found a base to fit my smaller shade & globe. Now I have to figure out how to display it once wired. It's a good bit smaller that the big floor lamp I made earlier, so it's a lower profile.

Here's a few pictures from today.

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Dave & Andy next to an old fire cart

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My new smaller lamp assembled.

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Bottom view of the cage & globe

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Both light units side by side for size comparison

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dave ziegler

Rod you should mount it on the last one of the Goose necks hanging down, it looks great. Getting my Base made for my Last Lamp next week, and getting the lamp to the Electrian friend tomorrow for wiring.

On Sunday Rod got an old Ladder and did something for Me I could not do. He climbed through a old second floor door on the Grain process building to get shots of the Big grain box above while the building is still standing here are those shots for History Plus, First Pictures when we were in the old Kinsey Bottle House Rod noticed something I had missed the Beams that support the second floor are from Old Pottstown Bethlehem Steel

1.Beam with Bethlehem on it in the red paint.

2. Grain Box

3. Looking in the Second floor of the Old Grain Process building from this building the grains moved to the fermenters in the Old DSP-Pa-12 by worm gears on the sealing of the Tunnel we had our Lockers in down on the bottom of the still.

4. Stairs with floor gone to bad to get closer, they go to the Little 3rd floor Cupalo tower on the building.

5. The Old Grain box the wood looks amazingly good like new in this shot of the whole grain Box

6.& 7. Grains still laying on the floor from spring of 1951 when the still made its last Whiskey. I wish the floor would have been walkable so I could have some of those old Whiskey grains from so long ago. My Dad worked there then.

8. Bethlehem on post in the Old Kinsey Bottle House

Thanks again to Rod for getting those Grain building shots. I now have Pictures just about everywhere in the Plant in standing Buildings to save for History.

Dave Z

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It Seems All The Nicest People Drink Old Hickory

America's Most Magnificent Bourbon

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silverfish

5. The Old Grain box the wood looks amazingly good like new in this shot of the whole grain Box

Wow! That does look like it is new wood.

How long has it been sitting and it still looks like that?...

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dave ziegler
Wow! That does look like it is new wood.

How long has it been sitting and it still looks like that?...

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spiderblues

Next trip I may just go for the last gooseneck. Can;t wait to see the base you are having made. Maybe I'll get one for this lamp?

No problem with the pictures. I'd still love to get up those stairs. I'll have to figure out a way though.

Maybe we'll go back in a couple weeks. I know Andy wanted to get something in the last building we were in!

Rod you should mount it on the last one of the Goose necks hanging down, it looks great. Getting my Base made for my Last Lamp next week, and getting the lamp to the Electrian friend tomorrow for wiring.

On Sunday Rod got an old Ladder and did something for Me I could not do. He climbed through a old second floor door on the Grain process building to get shots of the Big grain box above while the building is still standing here are those shots for History Plus, First Pictures when we were in the old Kinsey Bottle House Rod noticed something I had missed the Beams that support the second floor are from Old Pottstown Bethlehem Steel

1.Beam with Bethlehem on it in the red paint.

2. Grain Box

3. Looking in the Second floor of the Old Grain Process building from this building the grains moved to the fermenters in the Old DSP-Pa-12 by worm gears on the sealing of the Tunnel we had our Lockers in down on the bottom of the still.

4. Stairs with floor gone to bad to get closer, they go to the Little 3rd floor Cupalo tower on the building.

5. The Old Grain box the wood looks amazingly good like new in this shot of the whole grain Box

6.& 7. Grains still laying on the floor from spring of 1951 when the still made its last Whiskey. I wish the floor would have been walkable so I could have some of those old Whiskey grains from so long ago. My Dad worked there then.

8. Bethlehem on post in the Old Kinsey Bottle House

Thanks again to Rod for getting those Grain building shots. I now have Pictures just about everywhere in the Plant in standing Buildings to save for History.

Dave Z

==================================================

It Seems All The Nicest People Drink Old Hickory

America's Most Magnificent Bourbon

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dave ziegler

Back in the Days of WWII there was no better supporter of Freedom then Publicker Industries. They made synthetic Rubber and Fuel for the War and Much more. They did such a great job during the War that when it ended the Government sold them the AA Building they had paid to build for a $1.00. During the Air Lift Publicker produced bags of Potato Flour to feed those starving at the wars end.

My Father Clarence Ziegler a tail Gunner on the B-29 Smokey Stover flying over the Hump from Chukulia India, got a Job At Publickers Kinsey Distillery after WWII ended.

In Honor of My Dad I have a Jacket I had Made with his plane on its back and patches for his bomb group the 40th and 25th Sq,and 20th wing of the US Army Air Corps I wear it to The WWII Weekend in Reading every year with his dog tags.

This year something came to be I could have only dreamed of. Sunday Morning walking in to the Show the leader of the group that flys the Only Flying B-29 in the World The FIFI,

met me at the gate and said we have 2 people who did not show up for the 9:00 Am flight how would you like to fly at a reduced afordable price. I had my Credit card and I went for it. I had never flown in a plane ever, and here I was wearing my Pilot and Col uniform with the Jacket with the Plane my Dad flew on on the Back, wearing his dog tags and now they would fly in a B-29 for the first time Since Dad came home in 1946.

We flew for 45 minutes and I got to crawl through the Tunnel to the Tail Gun area and stand there and think about how Brave he was. It was an 11 hr run over the Hump if you made it back and He flew in the first four waves over. No one in a big Plane like the B-29 had ever gone over the Hump and His groups figured the best point to go to Higher Altitude going and coming back. After those 4 Missions They were put in other jobs he was then a Bomb Loader in India and then Tinian Island.

Here are a couple of Pictures of Me in and near the plane.

1. Me waiting to go on the Plane they told me to Salute My Dad in this Picture

2. Up in the Air just before I crawled to the Tail gunner position.

They also recorded the information about my Dad and the first 4 Missions ever flown over the Hump in a B-29 and they Knew of the Smokey Stover turns out a very Famous Plane. Since today is D day back then, I wanted to share my great Fortune and The Fact that My Fathers Dog Tags once again flew in the Air and On a B-29. So todays thread is in Honor of The Greatest Generation and the Great Companies Like Publicker and Boeing and so many Others that preserved freedom!

Dave Z

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It Seems All The Nicest people Drink Old Hickory

America's Most Magnificent Bourbon

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wmpevans

Dave, what a great story. Thanks for sharing.

My father was in Germany in WWII, and all you can say is war is hell.

On this anniversary of D-Day, June 6, one can't help but think of all the brave men who stormed the beaches, esp. the "first wave" guys, and how incredibly thankful we should all be for their sacrifices. :bowdown: :thankyousign:

From today's perspective a much simpler world in the sense that as a country :usflag: :usflag: we were fairly united and at least knew who our enemy was.

Cheers to your father.

Bill

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Jono

Dave, that is a great story and experience. What was the space like for the tail gunner? The view?

How long did your dad work at Kinsey? Did he enjoy it as much as you did?

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dave ziegler

Jono To answer your Question it is a very small area you have to jump up on a hanging canvas seat and sit holding the Gun when it was in there. To get there I had to crawl through the fusilodge and pull myself up into the spot. When he was back there he would have had to leave his chut and leather flyers jacket in the last compartment before the tail and he would have been sealed in with a closing round tunnel door because the B-29 was presurised to fly high and get over the hump. No where to go to the bathroom or drink anything 11 hours just sitting watching and hoping you would come back alive and if you had to go you just went on yourdself. He was in the very first four missions each testing for the best place to go up to a higher Alitude. 3 small windows one on each side and the one with the gun. A large person could not get in there. If I would not have lost 40 + pounds I would not have been able to get in there.

If anything happened he would have to be let out and dress quick enough to jump with his chut. Not good odds.

1. The gun looking out the back window, you had one little side window on each side.

2. Looking out the left side window

3. The sealing doors for the compartments this one being in the middle of the Plane they got much smaller at the back.

Tail gunners did not have very good chances if the plane was hit.

When I worked at Kinsey there were many WWII vets working there they hired many of them after the war. And down in Phila they hired lots of them at least one of the Band of Brothers worked in Phila for Publicker Wild Bill Guamere being one of them that worked at Publicker. A couple of years ago I spoke to Bill about working at Publicker when I met him at the air show in Reading.

During the war many a soldier got a bottle of Old Hickory or others of our products donated by Publicker. In my book about the company from 1947 they taked alot about being an American company and how american ideas keep the world going.

My Dad left Publicker because he wanted to become a truck driver and he got a job at the old Jones motors family owned trucking company. He worked there the rest of his life. He worked at Kinsey around 3 years and met people picking up loads at Kinsey from Jones and got his job that way.

I will never forget my flight in the B-29 because I really saw what he was up against and what a brave man he was.

Dave Z

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It Seems All The Nicest People Drink Old Hickopry

America's Most Magnificent Bourbon

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ebo

That is a great story, and just fantastic that you got to fly in a B-29 wearing your father's dog tags. :toast:

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Jono

It appears the range of swing on the tail gun was quite restricted.

You better have a bucket or coffee can with you for long trips..preferably with a lid! In a way, they shared a lot with submariners by being locked in a pressurized compartment with little hope of escape.

Unfortunately, the B-29 was not allowed to fly at the safer high altitudes and lower level bombing was ordered due to jet stream issues etc. so theoretically you would think they were safer than B-26, B-24s etc. but the lower altitude bombing runs led to losses.

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dave ziegler

Jono the barrel out the window has more movement then it looks to have inside there is sort of a wide sloting on the window. As far as room it was very tight in the tail.

My Dad as I said before and many other men from our area were after coming home from the war hired by Publicker, they had a policy to hire Vets first when they could. In 1947 Publicker went on the stock market and grew to number 434 on the Fotune 500. Those first years after the war they started building the explosion proof warehouses at Kinsey in 1946 and finished all of the 14 by fall 1947 around Sept when I was born.

In 1951 Explosion Proof all purpose warehouse U someday to be the worlds biggest Bottling house was built.

The Early 1950's were good years for Continental and the Kinsey plant and they continued to Distilling At DSP-PA-12 at Kinsey till Late Spring 1951.

Dave Z

====================================================

Kinsey The Unhurried Whiskey

For Unhurried Momets

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Jono

This may be the same plane...what noise!

\

I see that the gunner was separated from the actual guns - sitting above them - and fired with sighting.

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dave ziegler

Yes Jono that is the B-29 I flew in and yes you had to jump up on a canvas seat against the wall hold the gun handles and sit that way for 11 hours, with nothing to drink or nowhere to go to the bathroom you were sealed in because of the presurising of the plane. I'll bet my father was thrilled when he made it home from the war and got his job at Kinsey!

I went over today to Kinsey and took two pictures of how the weeds and trees are slowly finishing Kinsey off.

1. Can you believe this is a picture of the 1966 state of art Continental Distilling bottling house you can hardly see it for the trees and weeds so darn sad for me.

2. Here is a shot down from O warehouse looking at warehouse N and P below where weeds are covering them over.

It is all sureal for me to see what this jerk that owns the place has left happen to it. You wonder if Jacob G Kinsey's gost is walking there in wonder at its ruin!

Dave Z

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It Seems All The Nicest People Drink Old Hickory

America's Most Magnificent Bourbon

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donviper

Dave,

Hey! It's me Don. You met me yesterday while I was walking around with my girlfriend, son, and two friends. I'm a local photographer/videographer, and I enjoy finding abandoned places and capturing photos of them. I like to take a photographic record of these places because someday they'll be knocked down.

It was really nice talking with you yesterday and thanks for giving me some of the history of the place! It allows me to tell a story along with my photos when I share them online.

If you're not busy someday, maybe I can meet you over there and you can give me a more in depth history.

Better yet, I'd like to do a video documentary on the distillery if you are interested. I see you have lots of photos and documents that could lend to a very in depth visual history.

If you are interested, let me know. I cannot believe how large the property is!

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dave ziegler

Hey Don I sent you a message. Here is my latest project while I wait to get my early 1900's distillery floor lamp back from being wired. I am building a table lamp for my Kitchen from an explosion proof switch from warehouse M and its top switch lever from the Scotch chiller in the 1966 bottling house. A late 1930's pilot light from warehouse C and the explosion proof light ficture from the elevator in warehouses J & K housing from J cover from warehouse K.

Here are four pictures of what I have put together.

I will take it to work and see if my friend in Mauntaince will wire it for me.

Dave Z

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Kinsey The Unhurried Whiskey For Unhurrid Moments

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donviper

Dave,

Very cool light projects that you work on! I looked at almost all of the pictures you have posted on this single thread, very impressive!

Here are just a few of the pictures I took and posted on my website:

http://photo.pottstownpc.com/kinsey

I will post more soon, but I am going back to Kinsey on the 24th to get some more photos. I will be bringing a new photographer friend of mine from New Jersey with me. He's been anxious to see this enormous abandoned distillery.

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unclebunk
Here are just a few of the pictures I took and posted on my website:

http://photo.pottstownpc.com/kinsey

I will post more soon, but I am going back to Kinsey on the 24th to get some more photos. I will be bringing a new photographer friend of mine from New Jersey with me. He's been anxious to see this enormous abandoned distillery.

Great pictures, Don! Please encourage our friend Dave to consider the documentary project. That's a brilliant idea and we'll have our very own movie star right here on SB. Do it, Dave!:grin:

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dave ziegler

Thanks for the Kind words UncleBunk, I will try to do just that if people really want me too! I love nothing more then talking about Publicker and Kinsey Distillery.Speaking of which here are a couple of shots of some awesome things I have saved from the plant and my two Old Hickory Clocks.

1.the Large sign from warehouse P

2. the two small signs from warehouse P. About 7 years ago I was walking in the plant and saw the large sign tossed in the weeds by vandels. There was snow on the ground so I hid it in the weeds and after the snow left I carried it 1 1/2 miles through the woods to my friends station wagon to save it. It was a hard job carrying it but I could not let the creeps ruin it. The small signs are lit by my newly created Distillery Light like the one Rod made.

Later that month I got the two small signs from wareouse P giving me the whole set for history before the vandels could harm them. A few years later my friends who watch the plant got me the explosion proof phone to save for history from warehouse P.

3. The clock like a barrel top on the bottom of the picture was given me by Bourbon Joe to this very day I thank Him so much, I rewired it, and it works great. The clock on the top of the Picture I bought many years ago on E bay it is like new, but I had it overhauled by a friend. It is the rarest of the Old Hickory Clocks and lights.

I am always looking to save things for History and I have a paper in my will signed and dated by 5 people where I work in the bank safety box stating that all Publicker/Continental and Kinsey stuff most be given to Historic societies and Distillery Museums. I am driven to save every thing I can for the History of this great company and what it was like to work for a real winner and a wonderful company when I went there at age 19 in 1966.

It is my hope that my writings will always be interesting and filled with History.

Dave Z

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It Seems All The Nicest People Drink Old Hickory

America's Most Magnificent Bourbon

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unclebunk

Your collection certainly is fantastic. I'd sure like to see it in person some day. It's like having your very own museum right there in your home!

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