Alcohol has often been viewed through the lens of morality, as a barometer of spiritual commitment, worldliness, or conservatism. It is also often hidden in the historical record, making the role of alcohol within the Mennonite community difficult to assess. Yet, from Mennonite-owned distilleries and taverns in Danzig and Russia to liquor licenses and hotels in Manitoba, the production, sale, and consumption of alcohol has been a defining feature of Mennonite life.
A survey of the collections at Mennonite Heritage Village (MHV) in Steinbach indicates Mennonites drank just about anything.Roland Sawatzky
Stanley House was granted a license on July 30, 1897. For decades, it remained the only establish- ment in Winkler that could serve alcohol.Albert Siemens
Visits from temperance-minded evangelists from the United States gave rise to the establishment of a Mennonite Brethren church in Winkler.Hans Werner
A few decades after the founding of the Chortitza colony many of its villages had taverns, including Einlage.Glenn H. Penner
Mennonites had a tradition of consuming alcohol during their annual pig slaughter.Benjamin Wiebe
Luz en mi Camino opened in May 2003 in the village of Reinland, Manitoba Colony. Its aim was to help people with addiction.Kennert Giesbrecht
The Lachs distillery made a variety of liquors, but the most widely known were Goldwasser and Krambambuli. In the early eighteenth century the business was known by the salmon-shaped sign above its front door.
Winnipeg’s old city hall, where Jacob Penner served as alderman for nearly three decades.Dan Dyck
Abraham L. Dueck, once Aeltester of the Kleine Gemeinde in Manitoba, left his sermons in the care of his son-in-law.Ralph Friesen
Fast visited the bazaar in Berdyansk to get a taste of his childhood.Katherine Peters Yamada