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OUR HISTORY

The Brewerie opened its doors back in 2006 as Erie’s lone brew pub and restaurant. Before that time, finding a craft beer downtown was a difficult proposition. Finding a local craft beer was an impossible one.

The Brewerie Brew Pub and Restaurant in Erie, PA, had its beginnings as a passenger station in 1927. This picture is from its’ early years. So with beer in our blood {in the most literal and figurative sense} we set out to create beer that we liked, food that we enjoyed and a space that was unique and unconventional. And along the way, support local people & businesses that support us. That was our mission.

Our vision was lofty and ambitious: To help revitalize downtown Erie & the historic Union Station... one pint at a time.

Our philosophy was simple and “C-centric”:
CRAFT a great product.
CARE for our staff and patrons.
And be COMMUNITY focused & driven.

Years later, that’s all still at the heart of what we do. Brewing some good.



BUILDING HISTORY

Erie’s Union Station was dedicated and opened to the public in grand fashion on December 3rd, 1927. It was built to replace Union Depot that occupied the same area from 1865 to 1925.

The Brewerie Brew Pub and Restaruant in Erie, PA entrance on West 14th Street is shown here in a recent picture. Constructed by the New York Central Railroad (NYC) at a cost of over three million dollars, Union Station was a modern marvel at the time. Encompassing two city blocks and over 100,000 square feet, the structure exhibited then-popular Art Deco influences such as stylized, geometric detailing executed in terracotta and metal. To this day it remains a symbol of the railroads’ power and glory in the first half of the twentieth century.

Inside the facility, the Grand Concourse and Rotunda played home to the Union News stand, a soda fountain bar, a barber shop and other merchants. The United States Post Office operated mail service for both the New York Central and Pennsylvania Railroad. Below Union Station there is a very old and fully stocked bomb shelter and a tunnel that goes under 14th Street which was used to transfer mail from the station to the Erie Post Office. Another tunnel that runs fourteen blocks north to the bay was used for access to the waterfront.

 

NOTABLE PASSENGERS

Many travelers made their way through Union Station over the years. You could see them jammed at ticket windows, trying to get a quick bite to eat before their train departed, or gathered around the marble-top counters at the soda fountain. Some purchased a newspaper or magazine, got their shoes shined or even got a haircut.

Some of the most common scenes at the station featured men in uniform traveling in and out of town-- Most notably in the early 1940’s during the Second World War.

The station has also had its fair share of famous travelers. During his 1st campaign for presidency, Franklin D. Roosevelt made a whistle stop in Erie in 1932. In 1948 President Harry Truman made his own campaign stop here.

Former heavyweight boxing champ Jack Dempsey entertained crowds during a stop in the the early 1950’s. The legendary Babe Ruth was also a visitor and had a bite at the station diner . More recently, in 2008, ABC’s Good Morning America team made a visit to the station. The morning show was on a whistle stop tour of 50 states in 50 days.

On a side note: Union Depot hosted two stops by Abraham Lincoln in the 1860’s. Once on in route to the White House as president elect – and again four years later on his funeral train procession back to Illinois.



HAUNTED HISTORY

There have been dozens of tragic and untimely deaths in and around the station throughout its long history. But there is one urban legend that many locals know well. It begins with a young couple and their daughter Clara purchasing train tickets on the first floor. As the family climbed the stairs to the second floor train platform, Clara’s father turned to check on her and inadvertently struck her with his luggage. She fell backwards down the flight of marble stairs to her unfortunate death.

The Brewerie’s brewery has named one of its many handcrafted ales after the resident ghosts.  Apparition Ale is an Amber Ale for a little girl named Clara who fell backward down the flight of marble stairs as her family were purchasing train tickets in the early 1900’s. Apparition Ale artwork is shown. There is some evidence that Clara’s spirit still remains in the station. Dozens of paranormal investigative groups have presented chilling evidence that point to young girl’s spirit lingering in the halls.

Strange & unexplainable things do happen regularly at Union Station to this day. You can hear those stories on our Haunted History Tours during the months of April and October – while enjoying an Appartion Amber.

 
         
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