I’m so excited for spring to arrive! Warm weather means I’ll start beach combing again.
There’s a reason why beach glass washes up on the shores of Lake Michigan. It’s a testament to Milwaukee’s rich history of being the beer capital of the world.
The Great Chicago Fire of 1871 left the Midwest with a beer shortage. Milwaukee breweries stepped up their production to slate the region’s thirst. They continued to expand their market by using long-distance shipping to reach every part of the United States.
The supply of beach glass is slowly dwindling. Canned beer sales first overtook bottled beer sales in 1969. Fewer glass beer bottles in use today means less beach glass will be found in the future. It’s more common to spot plastic fragments on the beach now.
Lake glass begins as broken beer bottles or shards of glass containers that are weathered and calcified to frosty perfection by the wind, waves, rocks, and sand.
Maybe an emerald-hued piece of lake glass I found began with a sunset beatnik beer party. It took over 50 years in the elements to transform the glass to its current state. Its rough edges have been smoothed and it’s ready to return to land again. All good things take time.
Thanks for visiting!