The Tasting Panel magazine

August 2015

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1 10  /  the tasting panel  /  august 2015 Drink SPIRITED REPUBLIC "In 1830, Americans drank 7.1 gallons of pure alcohol," pointed out Derek Brown, one of Washington D.C.'s most important mixologists and bar owners, as well as the Chief Spirits Advisor for The Spirited Republic: Alcohol in American History. The year-long exhibit at the National Archives runs through January 2016 and offers visual insights into our nation's rollercoaster relation- ship with alcohol. "Drinking was not looked upon favorably then," he added, walking me through the astonishing rooms of collected photos, letters, artifacts and government documents dating from the 18th century to the present. Brown escorted me through these halls of history, showing me some of his favorite items. Letter from George Washington to Attorney General Edmund Randolph regard- ing prosecuting men involved in the Whiskey Rebellion, October 1, 1792. When farmers in Western Pennsylvania violently protested pay- ing federal taxes on whiskey made from their grain, President George Washington ordered troops to put down what became known as the Whiskey Rebellion. He sent this note to his Attorney General giving his opinion that those responsible should be prosecuted vigorously. National Archives, General Records of the Department of State 14094 Dichotomy of PHOTO: COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES PHOTO: COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES Meriwether Lewis purchased 30 gallons of wine and six iron-bound beer kegs for his expedition to the West on June 1, 1803. THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES PAYS TRIBUTE TO AMERICA'S COMPLICATED RELATIONSHIP WITH ALCOHOL THROUGH ITS SPIRITED REPUBLIC EXHIBIT by Meridith May "For God and Home and Native Land." One of the most powerful organizations fighting for Prohibition was the Woman's Christian Temperance Union (W.C.T.U.). Formed in 1874, its members railed against the "liquor trade," espe- cially the saloon. Male drinking, they argued, left women and children without financial support and promoted domestic violence, prostitution, venereal diseases and political corruption.

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