Stu Levitan welcome Peter Fauerbach, the namesake and great-great-grandson of the founder of the brewing company that is synonymous with Madison, for a discussion of his award-winning, lavishly illustrated new book, Fauerbach Brewing Company Madison Wisconsin 1848-1967.
The elder Peter Fauerbach was born in Bavaria in 1830, emigrated to the United State in 1850, working in and running breweries in upstate NY, and the young Wisconsin towns of Portage and New Lisbon. He made it to Madison in 1868 to lease the Sprecher Brewery at Blount and Williamson streets. By 1880 it was the Fauerbach Brewing Company, a mainstay of Madison life until it closed July 1, 1966. The brewery was torn down December 13, 1967, and the site was later developed by David and Leigh Mollenhoff as the Fauerbach Condominium.
Among Peter’s descendants with an important role in the company’s history – his grandson Karl H., general manager from Prohibition until 1960, and Karl H’s son Karl P., master brewer from 1957 until the final keg nine years later. Although our Peter Fauerbach was only 14 when the brewery closed, he is uniquely qualified to tell the Fauerbach story. After all, Karl H was his grandfather, Karl P his father. And it was his great-uncle Dr. Louis who made and implemented the decision to close the brewery. No wonder that he has become the unofficial company historian.
Peter Fauerbach has degrees in physics and math from St. Olaf College in Minnesota and a master’s in industrial engineering from the university of Wisconsin. Naturally, with that academic background, he spent his career as a health care consultant, with a particular focus on hospital relocations. He lives near Spring Harbor on Madison’s west side with his wife, Maggie Zoeller.