Posted: Jul 14, 2020
Virginia lays claim to the birthplace of American distilled spirits as the first batch of whiskey, albeit from corn, was documented to have been produced as early as 1620 by English settler George Thorpe near Jamestown. Rye’s presence and dominance in what later became the states of New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia was in great part due to socioeconomic factors and geography. In Europe, wheat was a staple meant for the tables of the affluent, whereas rye was a poor person’s staple. Immigrants to the new land in search of a better life were mostly poor, bringing with them what they knew best. “The original settlers from the Germanic areas grew rye for bread and whiskey,” said whiskey historian John Lipman. He cites the ship Mary Hope which had sailed in 1710 to Philadelphia carrying the Oberholtzers (née Overholt) and Böhmes (née Beam) to the New World as a lineage point.
By David Furer
July 7, 2020
Source and complete article: Distilling.com
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