Silver Bow Brewery Malt House

Young Christian Nissler came to the United States from Germany, made his way west and learned the brewing trade in Virginia City, Nevada. The promise of gold drew him to Montana, where a lucky strike at Bear Gulch earned the enterprising Nissler enough to start a brewery at German Gulch. When the nearby placers played out, Nissler moved on to the camp at Silver Bow in 1871. He established the Silver Bow Brewery in a modest log cabin. Placer mining soon played out there too, but quartz mining at Butte City boomed, bringing thirsty miners by the thousands. In 1886, Nissler expanded his operation along what was once the main road between Butte and Anaconda. The bustling complex at Nissler Junction included a brewery, bottling house, cellars, saloon, dwelling, wash house, and stables. Nissler ran the business successfully until his death in 1901. The brewery then operated under several other names and owners until 1912. Only the malt house, later converted to a private residence, and its attendant brick wash house remain today. The malt house features cut stone quoins at the corners and two-foot thick rubblestone walls, which helped maintain even temperature year round. A chimney set into the north wall served as the flue for the kiln where the barley was dried after malting in the basement. Although Butte boasted five breweries by 1900, these two buildings gain added significance as the only local remnants of this early industry.

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122195 Nissler Road, Butte, Montana ~ Private