No more bottles of Pabst on the roof

Seventy-five years after it was hoisted atop the Newark, NJ, brewery as a symbol of what was made inside, the 60-foot high beer bottle is gone from the skyline.

The rusty 25-ton landmark, which inside was a 55,000-gallon water tank, was taken down by the company demolishing the old brewery. It's in a half-dozen pieces, awaiting its fate.

The tank originally was built for the Hoffman Pale Dry Ginger Ale company in the early 1930s. When the beer company bought the plant in 1945, it changed the label and painted the bottle blue. Later it turned reddish from weathering.

Local preservation groups have waged a losing battle for two years to save the icon.

"It's kind of a sad day," Matthew Gosser, an adjunct professor of architecture at New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark, told The New York Times.

Gosser said he had grown so attached to the bottle that he had climbed halfway up the side last year before the police intervened. He had wandered among several of the abandoned buildings on the complex and salvaged remains for an art show, he said. On a recent Friday night he camped on the roof.

Not everyone was averse to the bottle's removal.

"This is terrific," Mamie Bridgeforth, the councilwoman for the West Ward, said. "I want to sit on that bottle and have my picture taken like Marilyn Monroe."

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