Reprinted from the American Breweriana Journal.
Written by Kevin Kious and Donald Roussin.
At one time or another, virtually every town of any consequence in southern Illinois has had at least one hometown brewery. Of the many breweries that have come and gone in the area, few faced, and overcame, as many obstacles in an effort to remain in business as the Mascoutah Brewing Company. It was able to survive fire, a tornado, fierce competition, and for a while at least, even Prohibition, before finally meeting its demise.
Today a bedroom community of around 6,000, Mascoutah, Illinois is located southeast of St. Louis, in the shadow of Scott Air Force Base. While nineteenth century Mascoutah was dominated by German immigrants, surprisingly, its first brewery was established by a native of France. Charles Bocquet started making beer around 1853 at the corner of East Green and North Lebanon Streets.
In 1857, a newspaper in nearby Belleville reported that Mascoutah had four breweries in operation.
In addition to Bocquet, the 1860 census listed three German immigrants who reported their occupations as brewers - Max Lutz, Adam Bruegel, and George Winter. It is unclear from the census records if they had their own establishments, or were working at other breweries in town.