Our National Drink – The Coffee Connection

Back in the days of the Boston Tea Party, drinking coffee became an act of patriotism as Americans protested the excessive tax levied by King George III on their tea. The Continental Congress, as a result, made coffee the national drink.

Coffee houses soon became gathering places for people such as George Washington, Paul Revere, John Adams and others known as the Sons of Liberty. The Declaration of Independence had its first public reading outside the Merchant’s Coffee House in Philadelphia. Later a New York City coffee house served as the stage for a hero’s welcome of General Washington upon his arrival to be inaugurated as our first president. Not only did coffee promote the spirit of our nation, but business was often conducted in these favorite gathering places. The New York Stock Exchange evolved from the Tontine Coffee House. Other important cities saw their coffee houses become hubs of political discussion and commerce.

The Spirit of George Washington Lives On

Over a century later in 1908, as George C. Washington (a distant relative of our first president) was waiting for his wife to join him for coffee, he noticed a powdery substance forming on the spout of his silver coffee pot. Being intrigued as both a chemist and an inventor, he experimented further. His determination led him to establish the first commercial instant coffee process with his company, the G. Washington Coffee Refining Company of Morris Plains, New Jersey. During World War I the company’s entire output was requisitioned by the US Army to provide the soldiers with their “cup of George” in the valiant effort to defend Europe. His company maintained its dominance in the coffee market for several decades.

1919 G. Washington Coffee Refining Company Ad

1919 G. Washington Coffee Refining Company Ad

More recently, in the development of George Washington Inn on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, the owners began a search for a fine coffee that would honor our founding father’s legacy. The setting of a west-coast Mount Vernon replica seemed to call for a beverage that would link the historical aspects of George Washington’s era to the 21st century. Upon discovering the family connection through the former G. Washington Coffee Refining Company, there was an added impetus to carry on the coffee tradition.

George Washington Coffee®, a specialty gourmet coffee, was born with a commitment to live up to the high standard set by the Washington name. Guests at George Washington Inn enjoy this fine coffee. It is also available online or can be found at the Valley Forge National Park in their Encampment Store.

George Washington Coffee


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