smart spending

5 famous family feuds

Not-so-brotherly love
Not-so-brotherly love

Ever feel like proposing a toast to family unity? It's doubtful the Gallos ever did.

You've almost certainly heard of Ernest and Julio Gallo, whose winemaking operation was the largest in the world.

You may know less about a third brother, Joseph. During the Great Depression, he became a ward of his older brothers after an apparent murder-suicide in which their father shot their mother then turned the trigger on himself.

Prohibition was ending, and Ernest and Julio began making cheap wine from the grapes of the family's California vineyard. But Joseph felt his treatment was akin to servitude. He became a commercial dairy rancher, whose best-known brand was Joseph Gallo cheese.

In this case, wine and cheese clearly didn't go together. After an extremely bitter court battle, Ernest and Julio prevailed over Joseph's claims that he had been denied his rightful share of the winery. Further, in a trademark infringement ruling, Ernest and Julio were given rights to the Gallo name. The cheese line had to be renamed Joseph Farms.

Joseph never again spoke to his brothers. He died in 2007, a few weeks before Ernest.

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