Joseph Magnus and his whiskey empire is an American story of a young man who lost his father in the Civil War but persevered and thrived. Joseph had to mature quickly and help care for his younger siblings. He discovered a knack for business and became a savvy merchant who seized on an opportunity to sell wholesale liquor. He had built a liquor empire by the time he was twenty-six years old.
The Joseph A. Magnus Company was based in Cincinnati, Ohio, introducing the very popular Murray Hill Club Whiskey. In 1902, advertising listed Murray Hill Club as “This particular brand for particular people.” The whiskey was marketed as aged in wood and bottled in full quarts, pints, and half pints. Early advertising suggested you could find it “wherever good whiskey was sold.” Another brand offered by the Magnus Company was Uncle Bob.
The Michigan connection
Joseph Magnus liked to visit Michigan as he was an avid deer hunter. He owned properties in Oden and Petoskey, Michigan. He spent his retirement years in the Oden and Petoskey, Michigan areas. On the shore of Little Traverse Bay, Magnus Park is named in his honor in Petoskey, Michigan.
The rediscovery of a historical whiskey
Prohibition brought on the end of Magnus whiskey production. It was not until Joseph’s great-grandson Jimmy Turner discovered in-tact bottles of Murray Hill Club Bourbon. With the assistance of multiple whiskey experts, Mr. Turner decided to replicate this fine-tasting bourbon. In 2016, Joseph Magnus and Murray Hill Club Bourbons began to appear. The first release of Joseph Magnus Cigar Blend Bourbon was received very well in the marketplace.
A return to Michigan
2020 brought about the partnership between Joseph Magnus and the Coppercraft Distillery in Holland, Michigan. A recent release of Joseph Magnus Cigar Blend Bourbon batch 91 entered the market as a blend of Magnus bourbon with eleven and eighteen-year-old whiskey. This unique blend of whiskey is triple cask finished in used Armagnac, Sherry, and Cognac casks. Magnus Cigar Blend is a delightful bourbon. You can see the results of our Joseph Magnus tasting HERE.