I'll admit that I know very little about this beer. I don't drink beer. Never have. Okay, well there were those few times as a kid on picnics in Aiea with small cans of Lucky Lager....
What I do know about Hamm's is that I loved the bear in the commercials. That and the song are all I remember. I don't even know if this beer is still made. But it was fun to find this old coaster in the back of a drawer. In very decent shape considering its age. It has to be close to 50 years old. Not something expected to survive. It was supposed to be used then tossed. Classic vintage ephemera.
Here's a link to Wikipedia's information about the bear. I have to wonder why they chose a bear. Maybe it's just me, but the idea of a bear up stream in my refreshing drinking water...ummmm...and then there's the color of the beer. Oh, never mind.
The words from the Hamm's Beer Theme "From The Land of Skye-Blue Water" were from a 1909 poem by Charles Wakefield Cadma (c) 1937 by Edwin H. Morris & Company. The theme music was by Nelle Richmond Eberhart.
From the Land of Sky Blue Waters (Waters),
From the land of pines, lofty balsam,
Comes the beer refreshing,
Hamm's the Beer Refreshing.
And for the best part, an actual Hamm's Beer commercial starring the Hamm's Beer Bear. It's almost classic Mad Men silly.
The artist who created the bear was Ray Tollefson. More information about him can be found here. Mr. Tollefson died in 2002.
UPDATE: Received an email from Mr. Tollefson's grandson which I'm printing below. Thank you Alan for contacting me. The Hamm's bear will always be one of my favorite animated characters. How lucky for you to still have so much of your grandfather's work!
I did a search for my Grandfather and stumbled across your site. Fun stuff to see the Hamm's Bear. We have many of my Grandfather, Ray Tollefson's, original ink drawings of the Hamm's bear. He also created a book so that all future artists would draw the bear the same. And if you ever start drinking beer, you can still buy Hamm's. - Alan Tollefson