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Presentation explores history of beer brewing in Kan.

Special to The Hays Daily News

WaKEENEY -- Trego County Historical Society in WaKeeney will host Kansas Brewers and Breweries, a presentation and discussion by Cindy Higgins on Jan. 27 in honor of Kansas Day. The program will start at 2 p.m. at Western Cooperative Electric Meeting Room. Members of the community are invited to attend the free program. The program is made possible by the Kansas Humanities Council.

As settlers streamed into Kansas, brewers set up their mash tuns and wort kettles when making beer still was an art and state prohibition a bemusing notion. Higgins will discuss these brewers of early Kansas, their role in their communities and how they have influenced Kansas brewers today.

Higgins is a journalist and Kansas historian whose research interest focuses on Kansas industry before technological mechanization dramatically changed work and labor in the early 20th century.

"Predominantly German, the first Kansas' brewers were more than beer makers," Higgins said. "They were culture custodians and entertainment sponsors who fostered a sense of community within the state's many German enclaves."

Kansas Brewers and Breweries is part of the Kansas Humanities Council's the Way We Worked Speakers Bureau, featuring presentations and discussions examining the theme of work and working in Kansas and how these stories help define us.

The Kansas Humanities Council conducts and supports community-based programs, serves as a financial resource through an active grant-making program and encourages Kansans to engage in the civic and cultural life of their communities.

For more information, contact the Kansas Humanities Council at (785) 357-0359 or visit online at

For more information about the presentation in WaKeeney, contact the Trego County Historical Society at (785) 743-2964 or email