Nestled in the hills of southeastern Wisconsin is the small town of Potosi. The town has a rich local history, including that of the Potosi Brewery, which was established in 1852. The brewery went out of business in the 1970s, but was revived by local residents as a non-profit foundation in 2000. In addition to the now-thriving Potosi Brewing Company, the foundation established the National Brewery Museum – in a joint venture with the American Breweriana Association. The American Breweriana Association is dedicated to preserving the history of brewing and brewery advertising. For anyone interested in the history of beer making in America, the National Brewer Museum makes for a wonderful excursion.

The museum in located in the rebuilt Potosi Brewery. It takes up several large floors of the facility, and on display you’ll find thousands of beer related memorabilia ranging back into the 1800s from all over the United States.

A casual walk through the museum can take a good hour or more. When you are finished, we recommend a visit to the Potosi Brewing Company to sample their excellent beers and eat in the brewery’s pub. The food is standard pub fare, but reasonably priced and more than recommended.

The Potosi Brewing Company and the National Brewery Museum are located about 30 minutes from Dubuque, IA, 90 minutes from Madison, WI, and about 3-4 hours from the Milwaukee and Chicago areas. It makes for a great day trip. We recommend visiting between the spring and fall as the local area is quite picturesque.

Learn more about the Potosi Brewing Company and the National Brewery Museum.

Below is a small sampling of what you’ll find at the National Brewery Museum.