Brewers, barmaids and boozers

A new exhibition from the ANU Archives
8 May 2018

The ANU Archives has a new exhibition showcasing the history of Tooth and Company, a significant NSW brewer, and the many hotels it owned and supplied throughout the state.

Tooth & Co. Ltd began in 1835, and continued as a major New South Wales industry leader for more than 150 years. From its early beginnings at the Kent Brewery on Parramatta Road in Sydney, Tooth expanded, with breweries and facilities across New South Wales. Tooth & Co. Ltd acquired Resch’s, and later Penfolds Wines and Courage Brewery, expanding into Victoria.

Tooth & Co. Ltd, like other breweries during the period, also made significant investments in hotels. Licensed hotels were seen as the best way to distribute their product, and Tooth & Co. Ltd owned more than 700 hotels across New South Wales at the peak of its hotel ownership.

In addition to the hotels that Tooth & Co. Ltd owned, there are also the hotels in which it had an 'interest'. Under the ‘tied-house’ system breweries advanced loans to prospective hoteliers and publicans, on the condition that the hotel would only sell, or sell a certain quota of, the brewery’s products. Tooth & Co. Ltd heavily invested in the tied house system, and kept extensive records of the properties in which they had an interest, and the properties that they owned outright, until the abolishment of the tied-house system under the 1977 Commonwealth Trade Practices Commission.

The yellow hotel cards, digitised by the Archives and now available online with a special interactive map, highlight this important collection of hotel records. The hotel cards provide valuable information about the hotel, its owner, the licensee, interested brewery, amenities, and local industry, as well as a photograph of the hotel. The earliest cards date from 1920, the latest to 1989.

Visit the Tooth & Co. Ltd online exhibition website >>


Exhibition in Menzies Library foyer

Exhibition in Menzies Library foyer


Items from Tooth & Co. Ltd
are on exhibit in the Menzies Library foyer
until July 2018.