Black Pride Beer
From the collection of:
Allee Willis

Debuting in 1969, Black Pride Beer was was concept first – “A Beer As Proud As Its People” – and beer second. With the hope of pumping pride and stimulating the economies of black communities nationwide, Black Pride was the brainchild of Edward J. McClellan, then Urban Program director of the NAACP in Chicago, whose south side where a large segment of the Black population lived was the first community served.

From the December 1969 edition of Brewers Digest: For A Brighter Future… Black Pride, Inc., in the best tradition of the free enterprise system, seeks to provide a means of … achievement for its stockholders as well as for its employees and for those with whom it does business. At the same time, as an economic institution within the black community, Black Pride, Inc., hopes by the example of its success to reveal to blacks the ability of the free enterprise system to measure to their needs if they are willing to measure to its demands. Further, as an economic institution within the black community, and with its stockholders and employees being members of that community, more revenue in the form of profits, dividends, salaries and wages will be available for the assumption of greater local responsibility for community services and improvement. Finally, and here the marketing implications are obvious as well, the promotion of a Black Pride product intrinsically involves the promotion of the idea of blacks having pride in themselves and the necessity of personal effort and involvement if that pride is to be justified.”

Black Pride may have stopped brewing in 1972 but Black pride has thankfully lived on.