The International Society for Beer Label Collectors and Brewery Research
To promote and disseminate knowledge relating to the hobby of beer label collecting and information regarding breweries, their history and allied subjects.
To make beer labels available to members by way of exchange or sale at reasonable prices, in aid of our nominated Charity or Society funds.
To provide opportunities for members to meet and to encourage them to correspond with fellow collectors to their mutual advantage.
To organise our annual Label of the Year event in order to recognise and to encourage exciting new beer label design and to thank the breweries for their goodwill, on which the Society depends for so much.
Labology in Perspective
2017 marks the 59th anniversary of the Labologists Society, having been founded in 1958, making it one of the oldest beer-related collecting societies in the world.
Label collecting certainly pre-dates the formation of the Society by many years, there were collectors active in the early years of this century, and throughout both World Wars soldiers posted to camps miles from their home towns, or abroad, sometimes soaked the labels off bottles of the local brew as a mementos.
However, it wasn’t until September 1958 Peter Dawson, with the help of Harold Horden and Colonel Fawcett of Guinness Exports, coined the term “Labology” and gave the impetus to set up the Society to unite label collectors around the world.
Initially, the “hobby” of Labology was developed as a public relations exercise to promote the worldwide availability of products from Guinness Exports, and the hobby was widely publicised and an office set up in London.
The International nature of the hobby was emphasized and among the stunts employed was the dropping of a large number of Guinness bottles in the Atlantic each containing a parchment greeting with a tear-off strip for the finder to reply. Amazingly 59 years after the event the odd reply still turns up!
Eventually though, the Company’s interest waned and it was left to the members to take the Society forward, which they have successfully done over the last 59 years.
The resurgence of interest in traditional beer and brewing methods in the mid 1970s, largely through the efforts of the Campaign for Real Ale, gave added impetus to the Society and saw the emergence of other brewery history and breweriana collecting societies.
To some extent that has now died back possibly because older and rarer labels were not immediately available to new collectors, but we should remember that today’s labels are tomorrow’s collectibles. Don’t ignore what’s available now, for even the grandest collection has to start somewhere.
Over the last fifty nine years the Society has run almost entirely due to the efforts of it’s enthusiastic members and it still does today.
For the Society to survive successfully, it needs the continued efforts of like minded collectors. Thus we welcome new members, either from the UK or overseas, to our Society..