1911 Beverages de luxe


j^ew England

Of Felton & Son Boston, Mass.


Any account of beverages de luxe would be in- complète without some référence to the distillation of Rum, an industry which dates back to the early days of the colonies, and which has continued with the usual variations down to the présent date. One of the first points, of course, is to disabuse the mind

of the reacier of any idea which he may have that this refers to Rum in the extremeiy broad and gênerai sensé in which the word is used by n early ail of the anti -liquor élément, as well as by some who are in the habit of using stimulants. It is a com- mon thing in even the best jonrnals to see références such as "Rum did it," or "The Rum élément,'' the ternis being meant to cover everything alcoholic. As a matter of fact, the produc- tion of Rum in this country is about one and one-half per cent, of the total production of strong alcoholic liquors, and the actual use of Rum as a beverage is still smaller proportionately. Many articles and chapters have been written on the be- ginning of the manufacture of Rum, as well as the dérivation of the word itself. As to the exact period when the distillation of a potable liquor from molasses began, it is probably prac- tically coeval with the beginning of the manufacture of the cane sugar itself. According to a paper on the etymology of the word "Rum," written for private circulation some years ago by N. Darnell Davis, who at that time occupied an important offi- ciai position in the colony of British Guiana, Rum was first distilled from the juice of the sugar cane in Barbadoes about the year 1640 or 1645, and the name the planters of the colony gave to the new liquor was "kill devil." At a comparatively early period it was callecl "Rum-bullion," a word which ex- pressed the idea of a great quarrel or tumult. In the library of Trinity Collège, Dublin, there is a manu- script containing a description of Barbadoes about the year 1651. The writer refers to the new spirit as follows : "The chief fuddling they make in the island is Rum-bullion, alias Kill Divill, and this is made of sugar canes distilled, a hot, hellish, and terrible liquor." Mr. Davis thinks that it was about the year 1660 that Rum- bullion was clipped of two of its syllables, but the first mention

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