ABA Acquires beercoast.com Website

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

Many ABA members are familiar with the breweriana website beercoast.com. The website attempts to document all types of breweriana and was developed by information technology pro and ABA Historical Preservation Award winner Gil Davis. Prior to his untimely death last March, Gil expressed his wish to donate the website to ABA. Over the summer his widow, Ruthann, helped make the donation a reality. After a long learning curve and many tweaks with the help of ABA member Kent Taylor, ABA is ready to introduce the website to the general membership at a new domain, ABAbeercoast.com.

What is ABAbeercoast.com and why is it different from other sites with a similar goal? Below we paraphrase Gil Davis from ABAbeercoast.com's “About” section:

The guides on ABAbeercoast.com are available to anyone who wishes to browse by state, province or brewer. The rich history of breweriana is available online anytime But membership has its advantages. As an ABAbeercoast.com member you can also:

— Search by code, description, key word or brewer name to quickly find an item in the guides.

— Manage your inventory online. Have you ever attended a breweriana show, found an interesting collectible and wondered if it was already in your collection? Now you can browse using your hand-held device and find out. Just log in to ABAbeercoast.com and find the item. Do you already have it? Do you have traders available? ABAbeercoast.com will tell you in a few seconds.

— Perform online want list comparisons. Have you ever wondered who else has a breweriana item for sale or trade? After your inventory is entered, ABAbeercoast.com enables you to find out who has it – in seconds! Just perform a want list comparison. What once took days or weeks of e-mail or USPS correspondence to exchange lists now takes seconds to perform. ABAbeercoast.com does this for you with every other member’s online trade inventory.

— Find other members. The member roster is available online so you can quickly contact other collectors for trading and opinions about breweriana items.

— View detailed information about items. Non-members can view thumbnail images of items, but members can see large scans which show great detail, if available.

— Submit items online. If you have an item that is not already in the guides, it can be uploaded to the site. Our members are constantly reviewing submissions to see if they are already in the guides and where they should be placed. In addition, you can view what has been submitted before it becomes part of an official guide and leave a comment for others to see.

Tired of looking at thumbnail images of breweriana? At ABAbeercoast.com we store a “wide image” whenever we have a more detailed image available. When browsing pages of items like coasters or labels, non-members will see thumbnail images like this (150 dpi):

But if you are a logged-in member you can also view the wide image of the same item if we have it on file. This enables you to see fine detail such as text and original artwork. Our members regularly add high-resolution images (600 dpi) to enhance the guides and make identification “easier.”

ABAbeercoast.com began in the early 2000s as a coaster-only website called Beer Coaster Mania which was developed by the late George Barone. George passed the idea of the website and all coaster images on to Gil Davis in 2015. Gil developed his own interactive crowd-sourced website to house the coaster data and expanded to all breweriana types over the next few years. The website is best at documenting small collectibles but larger items, such as toy train cars and trays, are well-represented. The largest collections of images are coasters (72,000), labels (86,000), business cards (4,300), stickers (11,000) and tokens (700). We are depending on you to share images from your collections to make all categories more complete. Thanks to Gil for sharing his computer programming expertise to benefit all breweriana collectors and brewery historians.

ABAbeercoast.com membership ($30 per year for a non-member subscription) is included with membership in American Breweriana Association (ABA), but you need to register for access to the site separately. Just contact us at sbreich@tds.net with your name, e-mail address and active ABA member number and we will add you to our member roster. Allow us a few days to get you registered and supply you with your login information. You may also reach us at ABAbeercoast.com by clicking “contact/join”. Your ABAbeercoast.com committee members are Tim Bowers, Kelly Kuehl, Larry Handy and Scott Reich.