St Louis, Omaha, New Orleans, Galveston, El Paso, Ft Wayne, San Jose, San Francisco, Cranston, RI
Updated 1/28/05 New Photos Added at Bottom of Page
Ralph Stenzel Jr. and Robert Ebert (see below) played host to your webguy on a recent visit to the Falstaff (ex-Southern Select) brewery in Galveston. From left to right, former Falstaff employee Robert and I enjoy a Falstaff in the hospitality room which has a great view of Galveston / Ralph and I in front of the bottle shop offices / storage tanks with the Falstaff logo / a 55 gal drum with a "Galveston Clean Beach sticker" - instead of "Falstaff" the sticker has "Galveston" in the logo, Robert told me Falstaff placed their old 55 gal drums as garbage cans along the beach to help keep it clean / a Falstaff logo in the power room / control panels / the old Southern Select bottling works!
If you'd like to learn more about this brewery, you can order a book on the history of the Galveston Brewery directly from your tour guide, Ralph Stenzel. The books are $20 each + $4 postage. You can contact him at Ralph Stenzel, P.O. Box 125, Santa Fe, Texas 77510-0125. Phone: 1-409-925-8401. E Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. I have a copy and it is very, very well done and 159 pages (!) of interesting information and photos. Here is a link to the history of the XXX root beer which used to also be made here.
The brewery as it appeared around the turn of the Century - from The Galveston Brewery
Thanks to former Falstaff employee Robert Ebert and Ralph W. Stenzel Jr., we now have a tour of the former Southern Select Brewery in Galveston. These pictures were taken in June of 2002. I am amazed how much equipment is still left in this brewery. There are older shots of the plant on the Plant Photos Page.
Ralph and Robert enjoy a cold one in the Galveston hospitality room after a hard day's work cleaning up the brewery. They are doing this without pay just because they love the history of the site so much. Hopefully someone can turn it into a museum. The Southern Select / Falstaff brewery is an integral part of Galveston's history.
The stainless steel Falstaff brew kettle after Ralph and Robert polished it up (wow) / View to Shield(s) park. Originally named after the Falstaff Shield Logo (see plant photos page), it now has been renamed to Shields Park / original Southern Select window / the basement where Robert and Ralph are dumping unwanted brewery "memorabilia" J
550 bbl stainless steel Falstaff installed brew kettle / tour guide Ralph Stenzel in front of kettle door on the second floor / Ralph with the brewkettle - Ralph's uncle Edward Stenzel sold the plant to Falstaff in the 1950s - he owned it when it was Southern Select / tour guide Robert Ebert - it has been 20 years and eight months since he had last seen it, both Robert and his father worked at this plant..../ Ralph with mash cooker #2, there are two cookers on this floor
Falstaff kettle in brewhouse tower from cooker floor, to the bottom left small hole in floor where valve control was removed. You can see where thieves have tried to pry stainless edging from the kettle / Kettle room of tower looking over warehouse one to warehouse two. Warehouse 2 was the Southern Select bottleshop when Falstaff bought the plant. You can still make out the slogan "Beer so good its liquid food" which was the Southern Select Slogan / Old Southern Select writing marking "Bottleshop" / Interior of Falstaff kettle (not as clean as Robert remembers it). / Cooker control panel
Fire door separating the Southern Select brewhouse from the newer Falstaff brewhouse / Kettle room of Southern Select. There was a 320 bbl copper kettle here which was removed after the plant closed. That's why the roof is gone. / Hot water tank in the Southern Select brewkettle room. Remains of a very ornate staircase. / Southern Select Stockhouse, they were smaller than the Falstaff stock tanks so were used for specialty and smaller brews.
Entrance to the old engineering plant, the arch doorway and windows are from the original plant built in the 1890s / inside engineering, compressor remains / Robert Ebert sitting in his father's office at his old desk. (Robert's father was a manager at Falstaff) Now offices for Tristate Motor Freight / Inside warehouse 1 looking south from the rail car doors. This was 34th street, Falstaff purchased the street from the city and closed it in / caustic tanks in warehouse 1
from "The Galveston Brewery" by Ralph W. Stenzel Jr.
Warehouse 2 (old Southern Select bottle shop) looking south / old bottleshop lunch room looking south / lunchroom coverted to Bersinger employee fitness center. In Robert's time at Falstaff when you wanted to work out you just stacked cases of beer. He did notice they took out the beer cooler next to the wall too L/ 3rd floor of new stockhouse - half the tanks removed on the other end / brewmaster's office with roof collapsed
Ralph in the brewhouse lab, one of two labs in the plant / Southern Select stockhouse tanks / bottom of grain silos brewhouse tower 4th floor / view from the brewhouse towards port of Galveston / view from brewhouse looking south towards the Galveston historical district
East side of brewhouse, new stockhouse & brewhouse lab / milling machine dumped in brewhouse / view east from brewhouse towards downtown Galveston / Stockhouse and remains of cooling tower / Southern Select stockhouse from brewhouse
Falstaff Vice President Harvey Beffa and Edward Stenzel, President of Galveston-Houston Breweries conclude the sale February 27, 1956 - Edward was Ralph's uncle - pic thanks to Derek Oltman of Plant 7
Southern Select brewkettle room, roof was removed to extract kettle and sell to China / Brewmaster's scale and controls / Grain scale brewhouse tower / steam system to brewkettle and cooker / cookers 1 & 2
Interior of cooker 2 / bottleshop midway looking east, position of pasteurizer and can line / bottleshop looking west / warehouse 3 looking south from loading ramp / front of plant, new stockhouse with wall removed to extract tanks (which were sold by mega-greedy owners to China). Robert's ride in front.
Ralph Stenzel at loading dock to warehouse one, this is where all materials were received, Robert's father's office was just past the loading dock / gov't cellar tanks / gov't cellar in the bottle shop / ditto /gov't cellar tank and beer pump / entrance to gov't cellar form bottle shop
Stockhouse tank 2nd floor new stockhouse, not it says "storage tank" not "fermenting tank". Was for finished beer. / 2nd floor new stockhouse looking east / same - note window for tour visitors to look through / Roof of machine shop / Hospitality room bar (Robert's favorite site in the plant...)
Falstaff management inspect the canning line and brew kettle at Southern Select after purchasing the brewery in 1956 - scans thanks to Derek Oltman
Looking west from hospitality room / brewhouse tower / Southern Select stockhouse / Shield Park (as in Falstaff Shield) - Kalmanovitz tried to get this back from the city / ammonia compressor in engineering
Hospitality room from patio / hospitality room bar / patio looking east / patio entrance to hospitality room, 2nd bar was to right of shops / brewhouse tower
Falstaff long haul truckers in front of the Galveston Plant, from "The Galveston Brewery"
Wort coolers / fermenting tank partially removed from 4th floor stockhouse / fermenting tanks in new stockhouse / tour guide Robert looking into stockhouse tank / 2nd floor stockhouse tanks
1/28/05 some new Galveston pics thanks to Morgan Robinson
Very lucky guys in the hospitality room - note they are served pitchers, not a 7 oz glass of beer like at Bud or Miller - thanks to The Galveston Brewery
the Hospitality Room in better times - scan thanks to Tom Clark
Such a waste. So sad. I had a chance to visit in 1978 and missed it. %^@($^$#(*%