Last weekend Ellen and I were in Menomonie and Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin attending a wedding. It was a perfect summer weekend. We thoroughly enjoyed our visit to neighboring Wisconsin. While there I had a good time looking over the brick buildings in the area. I visited with some area folks and learned about early industry. I knew the area was involved in logging in the late 1800’s. But what I didn’t know was that there were many brick kilns producing bricks. Logging takes place during the winter months and to utilize available labor brick companies were established.
The downtown buildings in Chippewa Falls had wonderful brick details.
A visit to Chippewa Falls would not be complete without a tour of the Leinenkugel Brewery. This is an old brewery that produces some excellent beer. I think it is considered a specialty brewery since they make several seasonal beers. While the brewing process is handled in a very modern fashion with spotless building interiors, the works is contained in several lovely older buildings. The oldest is the horse barn at 103 years old. This ‘new’ barn replaced one lost in a fire in 1905. The barn housed the horses used to deliver the product.
The brewery buildings themselves are mainly constructed of brick masonry. They also have nice details in the brickwork.
The oldest structure still on the site is the original well house, built into the side of a hill in 1867. It no longer furnishes water to the brewery. Today water is piped in from Chippewa Falls, but the water sent to the brewery is not treated with the normal municipal chemicals.
The brewery operates a spacious visitor center where you can find all sorts of information about the brewery. If you travel to this area of Wisconsin I highly recommend a tour of the Leinenkugel Brewery.