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Illinois Brewing Company (Socorro, N.M.) Ledgers

Identifier: MSS-683-BC

Scope and Content

There are two ledgers, labeled no. 2 and no. 3, containing records of transactions between 1911-1922. Ledger No. 2 contains entries from 1911-1916. In the beginning there is an alphabetical listing of clients with corresponding page numbers for transactions. The entries on each page are arranged by date, the column to the left lists what was bought or sold, the one on the right gives what was paid and whether by cash or merchandise such as wood or bottles. Throughout Ledger 2 there are references for entries to be continued in Ledger 3 and in Ledger 3 to Ledger 4. There are entries for individuals as well as businesses. Some businesses from around the state are the Telephone Office, and the New Mexico School of Mines in Socorro, New Mexico, the State Emporium in Santa Fe, Dad's Pool Hall, and Romero Drug Store in Magdalena, and Franciscan Fathers at Pe?a Blanca. Other business entries from cities such as Chicago, El Paso, and St. Louis are for products purchased by the Brewing Company such as sugar, malt, labels, gas, valves, extracts, etc. There is a loose receipt from the Albuquerque Foundry and Machine Works dated January 1913 for grates and plates for fire door arches.

Ledger No.3 entries date from 1917-1922. Entries are similar to the ones found in Ledger 2. This volume includes a section labeled "Soda Sales" and another listing ice clients, individuals and business, and arranged by date. Entries for ammonia and metal caps or "crowns" show that the Illinois Brewing Company used technical advances like refrigeration and mechanical bottling. Written in the back of Ledger 3 is a note about "size of ice cans," giving measurements inside, top, bottom, etc. This volume contains a loose item, a canceled check signed by C. J. Hammel, dated May 1938.


  • 1911-1938 (bulk 1911-1922)

Language of Materials


Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Copy Restrictions

Limited duplication of CSWR material is allowed for research purposes. User is responsible for compliance with all copyright, privacy, and libel laws. Permission is required for publication or distribution.

Historical Information

The Illinois Brewing Company located in Socorro, NN, was the first ice plant and soda pop bottling company in New Mexico. The brewery was founded by William Hammel in 1884 and named after his father's brewery in Lebanon, Illinois. Before opening the brewery, William imported his father's beer from Illinois, bottling and selling it locally. In 1887 he added an ice manufacturing operation. The ice production was tied to the brewing process because of the need to keep beer chilled for a long period while aging. The beer, called "Export Larger Beer" was brewed from 1884 until Prohibition in 1918. By 1908 William had added a soda pop bottling works in conjunction with the brewery and ice plant. William died in 1919 and his son, Clarence, took over the family ice plant and soda pop bottling business. In 1925 the company became the state's first bottler of Pepsi Cola. Eventually Illinois Brewing Company bottled other soft drinks - 7-Up, Nesbitt Orange and Grapette. With the repeal of prohibition in 1933 Clarence Hammel added a wholesale liquor distributorship to the business. In the 1950's he closed out the wholesale liquor operation and soda pop bottling portion of the business. In 1968 Hammel retired and closed the ice plant.

Also known as the Ice House Brewery, the building is located on Sixth Street in Socorro. It was remodeled in 1898 and again in 1904. The Socorro County Historical Society is restoring the building as the "Hammel Museum."


2 boxes ( .90 cu. ft. )


This collection consists of two ledgers for the Illinois Brewing Company in Socorro, New Mexico, dating from 1911-1922.

Related Material

Ritch Family Papers, Santa Fe, New Mexico Fray Angélico Chávez History Library. Contains Illinois Brewing Company invoices.
Finding Aid of the Illinois Brewing Company (Socorro, N.M.) Ledgers, 1911-1938 (bulk 1911-1922)
Processed by T.S. Reining
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English

Revision Statements

  • June 28, 2004: PUBLIC "-//University of New Mexico::Center for Southwest Research//TEXT (US::NmU::MSS 683 BC::Illinois Brewing Company (Socorro, N.M.) Ledgers)//EN" "nmu1mss683bc.sgml" converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).
  • Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.

Repository Details

Part of the UNM Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections Repository

University of New Mexico Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections
University Libraries, MSC05 3020
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque NM 87131