‘Glück Auf’ Brewery

In the background, a view of the brewery from the street in 1902 – opening of the tram line (Kerkrade Municipal Archives)

The brewery on Nieuwstraat was founded sometime before 1891, but the exact date is lost in the mists of time. The owner at the time was Victor Vorage. At his marriage in 1891, both he and his father, Willem Vorage, were described as brewers.

In around 1900, the brewery was taken over by his cousins Joseph Oscar, Willem Jozef, Pieter Jozef Emil, and Victor Maria Timmers. Their mother, Maria Petronella Hubertina Ritzerfeld, was Victor Vorage’s half-sister. After the takeover, the brewery was named ‘Glück Auf’, based on the traditional miners’ greeting meaning ‘Good Luck’. In 1911 the brewery was expanded again.

The brewery initially only brewed Jong (mild), Oud (mature), Lager, and pilsner. In 1912, the Timmers brothers were appointed representatives for the Netherlands for beer from the Kindl brewery in Munich. It set this Kerkrade brewery apart from the other breweries in the town, who only brewed the beer for one customer. For example, B. de brewery at Rolduc brewed the beer for Rolduc Abbey. In addition to its own beer, the ‘Gluck Auf’ brewery also sold other beers throughout the Netherlands. (Source: kerkradewiki.nl)

The First World War was the death knell for many breweries, including Glück Auf, due to inflation and border closures. In January 1918, the Timmers brothers sold their brewery to De Gekroonde Valk beer brewery, formerly Van Vollenhoven & Co., Amsterdam. Victor Timmers was the director of De Gekroonde Valk.

When the brewery finally shut its doors for good, the façade changed. In 1934, Ms Richterich’s ‘Tante Emma-Laden’ (local shop) moved to number 145, where it had been located since 1924, to number 144. It was popular with the miners of the Domaniale mine before and after their shifts. During the Second World War, the former brewery ice cellar was used as an air raid shelter. It had niches in the thick outer wall, where residents could sit on a chair during bombing raids.

The brewery was located in the current Nieuwstraat at number 142 – 144. The director of the brewery lived at number 144. Café Mertens was located at number 141. The brewery’s beer was served in this café, which also had an old bowling alley. Hotel Germania was on the other side of the road at number 146 and right next to it, on the corner of Holzstraat 144, was Café Restaurant Bischoff, also known as the Grenshotel. The café was reopened on 25 November 1944 with a new name: Bosten.

Between the two world wars (Gemeentearchief Kerkrade)

The street scene had changed after the First World War. Especially here, between the Domaniale and Holz collieries, many shops had settled.

Scroll to Top