One of the most well known bourbon whiskeys, Jim Beam takes the latter part of it’s name from the English translation of the Böhm family who founded the company way back in 1795. German immigrants, the Böhm family settled in Kentucky, USA, in the late 1700’s. The head of the family, Johannes ‘Reginald’ Beam was a farmer. He began producing his own corn whisky, called Old Jake Beam.
He started selling his first barrel in 1795 from his distillery he had named the Old Tub. The whisky passed down to multiple generations of the Beam family and by 1935 the then owner Jeremiah Beam renamed the company Jim Beam after his father who had expanded the brand worldwide.
Today, Jim Beam is a 7th generation family operated company, although the ultimate ownership has since passed to a Japanese distilling company called Suntory Holdings, via Fortune Brand who had owned the Jim Beam brand for many years.