Date of Award

Spring 5-27-2017

Document Type

Thesis: Open Access

Degree Name

MA History



Committee Chair

Michael Gonzalez, Ph.D.

Committee Co-Chair

Iris Engstrand, Ph.D.


Bill Owens is a pioneer in the United States craft brewing industry through his efforts as an advocate, writer, publisher, brewer, and entrepreneur who created a lasting legacy by influencing generations of brewers and beer fans. Owens wrote the first book on homebrewing equipment (How to Build a Small Brewery: Draft Beer in Ten Days in 1982). He opened the third brewpub in the country (Buffalo Bill's Brewery in Hayward, California in 1983) where, in 1985, he introduced the first commercial pumpkin beer among other beer style firsts. Owens published numerous brewery-focused magazines that featured many illustrious beer writers. This thesis explores Owens' place in the history of food, drink, and culture.