Historical Context

     Unfortunately I cannot speak of the context of what Guelph was like during the 1800s-1900s due to the lack of resources I currently have, but I can give a generalisation of what breweries would be like during this time. Here are some of the great innovations during G. Sleemans era that really appealed to me.

Steam Power

    Steam Power appeared in the London Brewing industry during the last quarter of the 18th century. I am unsure when it came into Ontario, Canada but I’m assuming it would have appeared within the same decade. Steam engines were originally purchased to mill large quantities of grain for large-scale production of beer and also mainly for the mining industry (to remove water from mines) (Hornsey, 2003). Now we use steam engines for a multitude of things. For example, 95% of nuclear power plants today use steam engines to generate power.

Inventions to decrease infections in beer

     As beer got more popular, and the want to produce beer more efficiently and at a larger scale increased. The brewers needed to find a way to shorten the time to cool worts. Before the large-scale production of beer they used “coolships”, this method however lengthy and it ambient temperatures were high, it could increase the infection of the worts (Hornsey, 2003).Therefore the attemperator was made, an attemperator is an apparatus made to either regulate hot or cold temperatures.

     Sleeman himself introduced several new innovations to gain more control over the brewing process, such as in 1874 his introduction of bisulphate of soda (a stabilizer and preservative) and his invention of an attemperator that allowed greater control of the brewing process, lowered labour costs, and enabled him to make lager ("The Silver Creek Brewery",n.d.).

Extra Historical Context

     This isn't neccessarily during the 1800-1900 but I thought it was really suprising and not expected. Brewing was actually dominated by women at first in the 1300s, as it was a low status and low skilled job, it also suited the women and their domestic responsibilities. There was a large decline in female participation from mid 1400s, as they were forced out as brewing became more profitable and prestigious. (Hornsey, 2003)