Ebert, Leo

Leo Ebert    Born in Klingerberg, Bavaria on June 28, 1837, Leo Ebert was born to make beer. Leo’s father and grandfather both worked in a brewery making ale and beer. Leo joined his father at the brewery when he was twelve years old. Consequently, Ebert only had a formal education up to the age of twelve. He worked under his father for three years and he continued his training at many breweries in Bavaria and Germany.
     In 1857, at the age of twenty, Leo married Matilda Uilchin. After two years of marriage, the newlyweds moved from Germany to New York City. They only remained in the Big Apple for nine months.
     After New York, Ebert moved to Cincinnati, Ohio. Unfortunately, Leo could not find work in a brewery in Cincinnati. He ended up working in a brickyard.
     With only $20.00, Leo came to Ironton. He started his own brewery in 1861 in a cave between Cronacher Hill and Clouston Field. In 1863, his new building located on Seventh and Railroad was completed. On May 14, 1863, production began in the new brewery. The brewery was orginally named Eagle Brewing Company, but later Ebert changed the name to Ebert Brewery. Leo ran the brewery himself until his death in 1908. Upon his death, his son Otto (born in 1870) took over the family business.
     Ebert was not just an accomplished brewer. He was also on the city council, school board and board of health for a total of seventeen years. He was the president of the Ohio Brewer’s Association for eight years. He ran for U.S. Congress twice, but was defeated both times.
     Ebert was a humanitarian as well as businessman. When the 1884 flood ravaged the area, Ebert opened his brewery as a soup kitchen for the refugees.
     Leo’s company did not last much longer than his life. When the 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution passed in January 16, 1919, the brewery was hit hard. No beer was produced by the company after May 1, 1919.