London's Hometown Brewery: The Labatt Story
April 12 to June 29, 2013
This exhibition tells the story of London’s long-time, historic brewery. From humble beginnings as a business dream of Irish immigrant farmer John Kinder Labatt, who came to Upper Canada in 1833, the brewery grew with the support of his wife Eliza and under the shrewdness of his son John Labatt.
In 2010, Museum London and the Western Archives benefited from a substantial gift of artifacts and archival materials from the Labatt Brewing Company. Highlights of these collections have been brought together to tell the story of one of London’s pre-eminent businesses. Selected artifacts include John Labatt’s desk, a grandfather clock, early photographs of the brewery, medals won for the quality of Labatt beer at international exhibitions, posters, labels, barrels, souvenir items, and of course, examples of containers and bottles used in over 150 years of company history.
The story of Labatt is also, in part, the story of London and its hotels and taverns. Historic photographs of these establishments detail the social and architectural history of beer enjoyment. In an interactive area of the exhibition, the marketing expertise of Labatt is evident in radio-advertising clips and television advertising.