The Glunz story began in 1879, when Louis Glunz I arrived in Chicago from his native Wesphalia, Germany. In Chicago, Louis found a bustling port city struggling to recover from the Great Chicago Fire.
With little more than the clothes he was wearing and the dream of starting his own business, Louis took a job as a deliveryman with Wacker & Birk, a Chicago brewery owned by prominent civic leader and businessman Charles H. Wacker. He worked hard, learned all he could about the brewery business and saved his wages to begin his own company.
Louis became a favorite of the Wackers. They showed their gratitude in the form of a business loan. In 1888, Louis set up shop as a wine, beer and spirits merchant at Wells and Division streets where his grandchildren and great grandchildren continue to do business today.
Shortly after Louis I opened his beer and wine business, he acquired a tavern next-door and sold beer and sandwiches. Meanwhile, his retail business was growing. He was bottling his own beer, wines, cordials and spirits and becoming a supplier to the wealthy leaders of Chicago industry.
Each day he delivered kegs of beer and baskets of wines and spirits to the German taverns along Lincoln Avenue. In the basement of the two stores, he bottled beer for the next day's orders, and bottled, corked and labeled wines to be laid down in his cellars.
In 1893, his friend, Charlie Wacker, who was then a director of the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago, was instrumental in making Louis a bottler of Schlitz beer for the Exposition.
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