Rebirth of historic Troy distillery slowed — but not halted — by pandemic

The founders of Hayner Distilling, a historic Troy-based distillery that operated from 1866 to 1920, are still planning a comeback a full century after it shut down, despite being slowed by the COVID-19 pandemic. FILE
The founders of Hayner Distilling, a historic Troy-based distillery that operated from 1866 to 1920, are still planning a comeback a full century after it shut down, despite being slowed by the COVID-19 pandemic. FILE

Credit: FILE

Credit: FILE

Hayner Distilling, founded in 1866, flourished for decades before Prohibition

The founders of Hayner Distilling, a historic Troy-based distillery that operated from 1866 to 1920, said this week they are still planning the distillery’s comeback despite progress being slowed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We wish we were sharing our new Hayner Rye Whiskey and Hayner Bourbon with you, but COVID-19 has also slowed the launch of Hayner Distilling,” the founders said.

Co-founder Greg Taylor said the pandemic has “delayed our launch by a couple of months,” but details about the opening are expected to be released before the end of the month. The owners released the distillery’s logo this week. Hayner Distilling will be located at 619 Lincoln Ave., Suite 1A in Troy.

The founders of Hayner Distilling, a historic Troy-based distillery that operated from 1866 to 1920, are still planning a comeback a full century after it shut down, despite being slowed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The founders released this logo this week, in January 2021. CONTRIBUTED
The founders of Hayner Distilling, a historic Troy-based distillery that operated from 1866 to 1920, are still planning a comeback a full century after it shut down, despite being slowed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The founders released this logo this week, in January 2021. CONTRIBUTED

The original Hayner Distilling Co. was founded in Troy in 1866 by Lewis Hayner and with the help of several family members expanded to Springfield and Dayton. In the decades that followed, the distillery evolved into a “nationally recognized and enormously profitable mail-order whiskey business,” according to the web site of the Troy-Hayner Cultural Center, which includes the Hayner Distillery Museum. Prohibition delivered the death blow to the distillery in 1920.

The distillery’s web site, haynerdistilling.com, recounts the rich history of the distillery and proclaims, “Now, 100 years later, the Hayner Distilling Co. has been resurrected. From a few surviving bottles, Hayner Whiskey and Bourbon are born again. Born 1866. Born again 2020.”

The Hayner name is significant in Troy: The Troy-Hayner Cultural Center at 301 W. Main St. is located in the former home of Mary Jane Hayner. The 1914 Romanesque mansion houses a community arts center and multiple exhibits.

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