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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Small Beer: 1948

Small Beer: 1948

New York circa 1948. "Patterson Beer Distributors -- Piel's Beer truck." It's Delic­ious, DeLIGHTful, Demand It! 4x5 negative by John M. Fox. View full size.

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Tall trucks

Man, semi trailers sure were high off the ground back then. I miss the old rounded front trailers.

I too am glad to see the Guinness cases. The Schaefer however…

Cheap Beer

Not sure how Piels tasted back then, but when I was growing up in the 80's it was basically water with a pinch of hops extract thrown in. We used to joke that it was ok to drive around with an open can of Piels in the car because it didn't actually have any alcohol in it. It's still for sale around here in eastern PA. Think it's about 12 bucks a case. Not the beer choice of highrollers and big spenders.

Old Beer

I don't think that I ever tried Piel's (although I remember hearing the jingle) but Knickerbocker was still around when I was in law school in the early 1970s. For some reason, it was bottled in imperial quarts, so you got about 20% more for the same price (somewhere around 50 cents.) That was a good enough deal that I drank a fair amount of the stuff.

"Light" Beer

Back in the day, light beer referred to the color and texture of the beer, not the calories. Low calorie beer didn't show up on the scene till the late 60's.

Aluminum kegs!

I had no idea that aluminum kegs have been used for so long, I would have expected to see wooden kegs still in use 60+ years ago.

[These are probably stainless steel. -tterrace]

Glad to see those cases of Guinness -- "It's Good for You!"

Burt & Harry Piel

The voices of the cartoon Burt and Harry Piel in commercials were those of Bob Elliot and Ray Goulding, aka Bob and Ray. These were a great treasure.

The Brothers

Burt & Harry Piel were featured for years in their commercials. It was one of those long-lost New York beers from my youth along with Rheingold, Ballantine and Knickerbocker. Burt & Harry were their ad shtick. Rheingold's was Miss Subway/Rheingold, and Ballantine's was "Hey, get your cold beer" along with Mel Allen. Google memories.

SHORPY OLD PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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