Maryland's capital city of Annapolis was first settled by the Puritans in the seventeenth century and was then known as Providence. It would later be named Anne Arundels Towne after the wife of Lord Baltimore, who owned the proprietary British colony. But it wasn't until a Royal Governor, Sir Francis Nicholson, moved the capital here from St. Mary's City that the small seaport received its present name. Sir Francis chose to honor Princess Anne, heiress to the throne of England.
The city has witnessed many important events in our nations history. The peace treaty ending the Revolutionary War, known as the Treaty of Paris, was signed here in 1783, and served as documentation of Great Britains recognition of the independence of the United States of America. And the same State House where George Washington tendered his resignation as General of the Continental Army following this same war is still, every year, host to the Maryland General Assembly.
Occupying its own unique role in the history of the city is the Fordham Brewing Company. First established in Annapolis by Englishman Benjamin Fordham in 1703 very early in the history of the regionit became very popular in the budding city. As his brewing endeavor flourished along with the Port of Annapolis, Fordham secured his own place in the history of the region, becoming one of the city's first aldermen. Unfortunately, when Fordham died in 1716, his brewery was closed almost forever.
For nearly three centuries, the Fordham brewery was closed. Or should we say, on hiatus? It was re-established in Annapolis by William Muehlhauser and Jim Lutz in 1995. In researching the history of Annapolis area breweries of days gone by, Lutz, currently president and co-owner, discovered the story of this once famed brewhouse. As he puts it, I just went back to see what breweries existed in Annapolis and ran across this Fordham Brewery. I contacted the Fordham family and asked them if we could resurrect their great-great-great-grandfathers name. The family was happy to oblige.
In 2000, the company expanded to meet growing demand and began brewing their lagers and ales at a new facility located in Alexandria, Virginia. Then, in 2003, in another effort to meet ever-growing demand, they moved to a brewing and bottling facility in Dover, Delaware. Today they are the sixth fastest growing brewery in the country, with no plans of scaling back their rapid growth. They are proud to retain their dedication to quality, authenticity and pure ingredients while also managing to appeal to a much broader market than many other domestic microbreweries.
For more information about the brewery and scheduled tours call (302) 678-4810 or check out their web site at http://www.fordhambrewing.com.