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An Oral History of Colonel Anngus

No one has more passion for the South than Colonel Anngus of Pen Island Brewing Company.

Born in Beaverlick, Kentucky, Clay Torres Anngus headed South, enlisted in the war effort and immediately made his presence felt.

He made a name for himself by going under cover. Using his oral skills, he easily penetrated enemy lines, in turn, helping Southern General Robert E. Lee snatch victories from Union hands.

However, things would soon turn bloody.

During a muffed reconnaissance mission, Colonel Anngus was caught red-handed and taken hostage, which started the Battle of Beaver Dam Creek, the first major engagement of the Seven Days Battles of the Civil War.

Ornery in captivity, he was placed in a small, dark, ‘hot box’, filled with the lingering smells of those who came before him – many of whom died from dehydration.

But for once, The Colonel refused to go down easy.

For weeks he practiced learning how to trap rainwater with his tongue for survival -- and would often yodel in the box all night long to keep the enemy from breaking his will.

Dirty, worn out and unshaven, the Colonel suffered a deep gash from the hatchet of a Union Private during a cunning escape attempt.

A month later, bleeding and with a nasty infection, Colonel Anngus would finally come home in a prisoner swap negotiated by Major General Bushrod Johnson on April 14.

The day is still celebrated annually as a National Holiday across the South.

Fully recovered and pardoned by President Johnson, Colonel Anngus headed for Beaver, Pennsylvania, where he met wife Dolores and pitched a tent on Pen Island.

And the rest is history.

Colonel Clay Torres Anngus.

Combat wounded veteran. War hero. Head Tastemaster at Pen Island Brewing Company.


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