Bizarre story behind Aussie beer
by Shireen Khalil

RESCH is one of the great Aussie beer brands.

It was created by Edmund Resch, a pioneer of the very first activity of beer-brewing in Australia.

The beer has been around for several years - but what you may not realise is this old favourite has actually survived a troubled history.

It was started by Edmund Resch.

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When Edmund was 16-years-old, he and his youngest brother Richard arrived in Australia from Germany.

After spending time on Victorian and New South Wales minefields, and then as hoteliers in Queensland, they decided to buy a cordial and aerated water factory in Wilcannia, a small town in NSW in 1877, before opening the Lion Brewery in 1883.

As business flourished they purchased a brewery in Cootamundra and Tibooburra - both in NSW - and renamed it the Lion Brewery.

But by 1885 the brothers decided to part ways and mutually agreed that Richard would carry on at Cootamundra and Tibooburra and Edmund at Wilcannia. This is where Edmund built up an enviable reputation as a skilful brewer.

He also went on to purchase Allt's Brewery in 1897 and acquired the NSW Lager Bier Brewing Company Ltd's (Waverley Brewery) in Redfern.

Aussies loved his beer so much that his brewers' output secured much of the state's market - upholding the title of 'brewer by appointment to His Excellency the Governor-General' from 1904 to 1914. In 1906, Resch's Ltd was reportedly incorporated with a capital of 150,000 ($A270,000).

According to the Australian Dictionary of Biography, during World War I Edmund contributed generously to the war effort and made up the difference in pay for about sixty employees who had enlisted.

But despite his success, economic contribution and being an Australian citizen for more than 50 years, he was arrested and interned at Holsworthy in November 1917.

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