Articles from Civil War Newspapers
BELLVILLE] TEXAS COUNTRYMAN, June 12, 1861, p. 2, c. 6
The times are so hard, that many families have taken to drinking coffee but once a day. It is a good time to retrench and reform, when you can't help it.
[LITTLE ROCK] WEEKLY ARKANSAS GAZETTE, June 15, 1861,
p. 4, c. 1
A Suggestion.—The following communication contains a suggestion for the times:
A very good coffee can be made, costing only 12½ cents, by mixing one spoonful of coffee with one spoonful of toasted corn meal, boil well and clear in the usual way. I have used it for two weeks, and several friends visiting my house say they could not discover any thing peculiar in the taste of my coffee, but pronounced it very good. Try it and see if we cannot get along comfortably, even while our ports are blockaded by the would be kind. I can assure you it is very pleasant, though not strong enough to make us drunk.
DAILY CHRONICLE & SENTINEL [AUGUSTA, GA], August 25, 1861, p. 3, c. 2
Greensboro', Ga., August 23, 1861.
To the Editor of the Chronicle & Sentinel:
Having heard you were great coffee drinkers, and always relished a good cup, and knowing that you desired to run Lincoln's blockade into nonentity, to obtain a good cup, (such as you have no doubt often tasted at the French Market, New Orleans,) I enclose to you the receipt--the very latest--for making the very best domestic coffee. This coffee, when made by the receipt, is of excellent flavor, and very nutritious. It is of sufficient strength, and not excitable in its action. It is mild, healthy, persuasive, and sufficiently exhilarating for any epicure. When you smell it, you will say "I believe it's Java;" when you taste it, you will say, "I think it is Java;" when you drink it, you exclaim (foreignly,), "I'll pe tamn [sic??] if it isn't Java coffee!" It is true, it has not that foreign accent; but by adding a little rich milk or cream, it speaks almost the foreign tongue. Try it, as an antidote for the blockade.
Take the common garden beet, wash it clean, cut it up into small pieces,
twice the size of a grain of coffee; put into the coffee toaster or oven, and
roast as you do your coffee--perfectly brown.
Take care not to burn while toasting it.
When sufficiently dry and hard, grind it in a clean mill, and take half a
common sized coffee cup of the grounds, and boil with one gallon water.
Then settle with an egg, and send to the table, hot.
Sweeten with very little sugar, and add good cream or milk.
This coffee can be drank by children, with impunity, and will not (in my
judgment,) either impair sight or nerves. Col.
Wm. W. D. Weaver and myself have tried it, and find it almost equal, when
properly made, to either the Java, Brazilian or Mocha coffee. I am indebted to the Colonel for this excellent substitute;
and as every man has his beet orchard, so has he his coffee.
And like Cuffee, we exclaim, "bress God for dis blockade.
Nigger now get him plenty of kophphee, and Mr. Lincoln am no where."
R. J. Dawson.
P.S. There is a percentage of water in the beet which is extracted as you toast the coffee particles to a nice brown.
[ATLANTA, GA], August 27, 1861, p. 1, c. 1 [left edge in fold]
to Get Coffee.
Greensboro', Ga., Aug. 23, 1861.
To the Editor of the Chronicle & Sentinel:
Having heard you were great coffee drinkers, and always relished a good cup, and knowing that you desired to run Lincoln's blockade into nonentity, to obtain a good cup, such as you have no doubt often tasted at the French market, New Orleans,) I enclose you the receipt--the very latest--for making the very best domestic coffee. This coffee, when made by the receipt, is of excellent flavor, and very nutritious. It is of sufficient strength, and not excitable in its action. It is mild, healthy, persuasive, and sufficiently exhilarating for any epicure. When you smell it, you will say, "I believe it's Java;" when you taste it, you will taste (?) it, you will say, "I think it is Java;" when you drink it, you exclaim (foreignly) ?? shure it is Java." It is true, it has not that foreign accent; but by adding a little milk or cream, it speaks almost the foreign tongue ?? it, as an antidote for the blockade.
Take the common garden beet, wash it clean, cut it into small pieces,
twice the size of a bean of coffee; put into the coffee toaster or pan, and
roast as you do your
coffee--perfectly brown. Take care
not to burn while ??ing it. When
sufficiently dry and hard, grind it in a clean mill, and take half a common size
coffee cup of the grounds, and boil in one gallon water.
Then settle with an egg, and send to the table, hot.
Sweeten with very? little sugar, and add good cream or milk, ??? coffee
can be drank by children with impunity, and will not (in my judgment,) either
impair sight or nerves. Col. Wm. W.
D. Wea??? and myself have tried it, and find it almost equal, when properly
made, to either the Java, Brazilian or Mocha coffee.
I am indebted to the Colonel for this excellent substitute; and as every
man has his beet orchard, so has he his coffee.
And like Cuffee, we exclaim, "Bress God for dis blockade.
Nigger now get ?? plenty of kophphee, and Mr. Lincoln am ??here."
R. J. Dawson.
P.S. There is a per centage
of water in the beet, which is extracted as y you toast the ??? particles to a
[LITTLE ROCK] ARKANSAS TRUE DEMOCRAT, August 29, 1861,
p. 1, c. 7
War Coffee.—A very good coffee can be made, by costing only12½ cents, by mixing one spoonful of coffee with one spoonful of toasted corn meal; boil well and clear in the usual way. I have used it for two weeks, and several friends visiting my house say they could not discover anything peculiar n the taste of my coffee, but pronounced it very good. Try it, and see if we can't get along comfortably, even while our ports are blockaded by the would-be king. I can assure you it is very pleasant, though not strong enough to make us drunk.—Exchange.
DAILY CHRONICLE & SENTINEL [AUGUSTA, GA], August 31, 1861, p. 3, c. 2
Greensboro, Ga., Aug. 28, 1861.
To the Editor of the Chronicle & Sentinel:
You will excuse me for taxing again your patient indulgence upon the subject of Beet Coffee, and add this note to my former, in order than no one may be deceived in making an article of this desirable beverage. For fear some of the more ignorant might not follow up (what common sense has heretofore usually supplied) making good coffee, I would state this coffee is regulated by taste, as all coffee is made. If you wish it high-toned, take one cupful of grounds to the gallon; if not, take less. Modify to suit your taste, and then little sugar and rich cream or milk, and your joy will have been complete. One half cupful of grounds for children, well boiled, and one full cup, for adults, and y you can make no mistake.
Your friend, R. J. Dawson.
REPUBLICAN, September 9, 1861, p. 1, c. 3
Oak Grove, Gwinnett County, Ga.,
September 4th, 1861. }
Mr. Editor:--Thinking that your readers would be interested in hearing the news from upper Georgia, I herewith submit you a few dots.
. . . Sugar and coffee are getting scarce and high. The sugar we are learning to dispense with, and we have an excellent substitute for coffee, very cheap and abundant. It is rye—we have been using it in our family for six weeks, and I think it equally as healthy, and as palatable as the Rio. It is prepared in the same way as coffee, being browned and parched, and afterwards ground fine. So you see as far as coffee is concerned, we don't care a straw about Lincoln's blockade. But, sir, coffee is not the only article we have learned to do without. Our fair daughters are busying themselves in preparing homespun for their dresses, and for their brothers and husbands. Many an old spinning wheel and handloom have been put to work anew, to help in maintaining Southern independence; Yankee tweeds, casimers, and broadcloths, also calicos, ginghams, and delaines will soon go a begging. . . . Gwinnett.
RALEIGH REGISTER, September 11, 1861, p. 3, c. 5
For the Register.Messrs. Editors:--Remembering when quite a boy, that during the war of 1812, Rye was used in my father's family as a substitute for coffee.—I resolved to see if I could not reduce the cost of old Java, by introducing it again into use. As soon as I could obtain a peck of this rather scarce grain, I carefully weighed two pounds, which I added after parching to the same quantity of coffee, and from one tea-cup of this admixture, we obtained as good coffee, and we believe a far more healthy beverage than from the coffee itself, especially for Dyspeptics.
NATCHEZ DAILY COURIER
[MS], September 21, 1861, p. 1, c. 3
[From the Annual of Scientific Discovery]
'Liebig states that
Asparagus, contains, in common with Tea and Coffee, a principle which he calls
Taurine, and which he considers essential to the health of those who do not take
strong exercise. By this, a writer
in the London Gardener's Chronicle was
led to test Asparagus as a substitute for Coffee.
He says: The young shoots
were not agreeable, having an alkaline taste.
I then tried ripe seeds, and they, roasted and ground, made a full
flavored Coffee, not easily distinguished from fine Mocha.
The seeds are easily freed from the berries by drying them in a cool
[warm, I suppose he means,] oven, and then rubbing them on a sieve.'
'There is in Berlin, Prussia, a large establishment for the manufacture of coffee from acorns and Chicory, the articles being made separately. The Chicory is mixed with an equal weight of turnips, to render it sweeter. The Acorn Coffee, which is made from roasted and ground Acorns, is sold in large quantities, and frequently with rather a medicinal than an economical view, as it is thought to have a wholesome effect upon the blood. Acorn Coffee is, however, made and used in many parts of Germany for sole purpose of adulterating genuine Coffee.
DAILY CHRONICLE & SENTINEL [AUGUSTA, GA], September 27, 1861, p. 2, c.
Coffee.--This luxury--esteemed the greater from its present scarcity--is retailing from 38 to 40 cents per pound for Rio in this city; (Java has about "gin out.") rye and barely [sic] are being adopted as substitutes in many families; and sweet potatoes, beets and ground peas are also brought into requisition. All these, people say, make a very palatable drink; and we have no doubt, if we try, we can bring ourselves to believe they each and all make a beverage equal to the best Java or Mocha.
RALEIGH REGISTER, September 28, 1861, p. 3, c. 2
An Excellent Substitute for Coffee.For a family of seven or eight persons, take a pint of well toasted corn meal, and add to it as much water as an ordinary sized coffee pot will hold, and then boil it well.—We have tried this toasted meal coffee, and prefer it to Java or Rio, inasmuch as genuine coffee does not suit our digestive organs, and we have not used it for years. Many persons cannot drink coffee with impunity, and we advise all such to try our receipt.—They will find it more nutritious than coffee and quite as palatable.
[SC], October 5, 1861, p. 1, c. 6
An Excellent Substitute for Coffee.--For a family of seven or eight persons, take a pint of well toasted corn meal, and add to it as much water as an ordinary sized coffee pot will hold, and then boil it well. We have tried this toasted meal coffee, and prefer it to Java or Rio, in as much as genuine coffee does not suit our digestive organs, and we have not used it for years. Many persons cannot drink coffee with impunity, and we advise all such to try our receipt. They will find it more nutritious than coffee and quite as palatable.--Raleigh Register.
[BELLVILLE] TEXAS COUNTRYMAN, October 9, 1861, p. 1, c. 5
Substitute for Coffee.—Scrape clean three or four good parsnips, cut them into thin slices, bake till well brown, grind or crush, and use in the same manner as coffee, from which it is scarcely distinguishable. This is not only a beverage equally as good as coffee, but it is likewise a cure for asthma.
MOBILE REGISTER AND
ADVERTISER [AL], October 9, 1861, p. 2, c. 3
An Excellent Substitute for Coffee.--For a family of seven or eight persons, take a pint of well toasted corn meal, and add to it as much water as an ordinary sized coffee-pot will hold, and then boil it well. We have tried this toasted meal coffee, and prefer it to Java or Rio, inasmuch as genuine coffee does not suit our digestive organs, and we have not used it for years. Many persons cannot drink coffee with impunity, and we advise all such to try our receipt. They will find it more nutritious than coffee and quite as palatable.--[Raleigh Register.
RALEIGH REGISTER, October 9, 1861, p. 2, c. 1
Wheat as a Substitute for Coffee.Editors Dispatch:--Being on a visit to the county of Mecklenburg a short time since, I was told by one of my female acquaintances, near Clarksville, that she had found an excellent substitute for that very popular and indispensable article called "coffee." It consists in wheat parched, ground, and prepared in the same manner you do coffee. Experienced and devoted lovers of coffee have tried the wheat and report it equally as good as the genuine article. The grains being of different sizes, they should be parched separately, and afterwards ground together, when the coffee imparts to the wheat its genuine aromatic properties. Two-thirds wheat and the remainder coffee make a most excellent drink.
ROCK] ARKANSAS TRUE DEMOCRAT, October 17, 1861, p. 1, c. 6
Recipes for the Times.—To Make Coffee.—Take tan bark, three parts; three old cigar stumps and a quart of water, mix well, and boil fifteen minutes in a dirty coffee pot, and the best judges cannot tell it from the finest Mocha.
NATCHEZ DAILY COURIER
[MS], October 18, 1861, p. 1, c. 5
A Light Matter. The days get shorter, daylight is becoming scarcer, and candles dearer. Coal oil is said to be where coffee is--out of sight. The substitute for coffee is rye, the substitute for coal oil is a black cat, which when rubbed strongly on a frosty night will shine.
NATCHEZ DAILY COURIER
[MS], October 30, 1861, p. 1, c. 5
Substitute for Coffee. We are requested to recommend Field Peas, dried, parched, and ground, as an excellent substitute for Coffee, said to be better than wheat or rye.--Fayetteville Observer.
DAILY CHRONICLE & SENTINEL [AUGUSTA, GA], November 3, 1861, p. 1, c. 1
New Substitute for Coffee.--Dr. Poiterin, in the Mobile Tribune, recommends the acorn of our native oak, (Quercus Alba) as a substitute for coffee. It is pronounced an excellent remedial agent, as well as a source of economy.
NATCHEZ DAILY COURIER
[MS], November 5, 1861, p. 1, c. 2
From the Mobile Daily
In times of famine, occasioned by the total loss of a crop, by scarcity, the protracted operation of a siege, or by a blockade such as now prevails, while food is diminished and dear, efforts are usually made to substitute for articles of prime necessity others that approximate most nearly to them in their taste and general sanitary effects. Under circumstances it pertains to all enlightened and practical hygienic systems to select for the purpose of such experiments, those substances which are most wholesome. At the South, several substitutes for coffee have been resorted to. Neither of them is unwholesome; but, at the same time, neither is designed to produce salutary results. By roasting corn, wheat, oats, or potatoes a considerable consumption of genuine coffee is certainly economised, the latter being used by in such quantity as is necessary to flavor. Now, if in adhering to the small quantity employed for imparting taste to the decoction, the roasted acorn shall be adopted, the problem is solved.
The acorn of our native oak (Quercus Alba) is found in great abundance from Canada to Florida. This species approaches nearest to the fruit bearing oak (Quercus Hispanica) which is palatable, raw or cooked and which constitutes an important element of traffic in Old Castile. If the reader will carefully note the analysis given of it by Lorvig, the chemist, he will be convinced that it contains such substances as are, at once, most nutricious [sic] and medicinal; Greasy oil, rosin, gum, tannin, or bitter extract, starch and the remainder potash and calcium salts.
Acorns supplied the food of man before wheat was discovered. In France, during the scarcity of 1709, the indigent were compelled to have recourse to this resource for them, the only one. Pulverised into flour, they made use of it for bread; and, under the first consulate, upon the establishment of the continental system, some industrial economists conceived the idea of substituting the roasted acorn for coffee, and styled it "indigenous coffee."
In 1840, while I was stationed in the Grecian Archipelago, I visited from time to time the principal islands--Samos, Scio, Imbros, etc. The Greeks who inhabit those countries have recourse to acorn coffee in the slightest affections of the stomach or intestines; and I have seen subjects suffering from chronic dyspepsis, or diarrhoea, cured in less than four or five days.
The reader may assure himself of the correctness of my statement by opening any standard work on materia medica; and he will learn that acorn coffee is a tonic proscribed in scrofula, debility of the digestive organs, and recommended as a substitute for coffee to nervous persons. If, therefore, the blockade should continue, and the importation of coffee is rendered impracticable, it would be very natural that the use of acorn coffee, mixed with the genuine should become universal. The poor would find it equally a source of economy and a valuable remedy; and soldiers in camp would be less exposed to diarrhoea, one of the most terrible evils that can exist in an army.
In order to prepare this coffee, the acorns must be first roasted in an oven. The hard outer shell is removed, and the kernal is preserved, which, after being roasted, is ground with ordinary coffee. A. Poiteven, M. D.
[ATLANTA, GA], November 7, 1861, p. 3, c. 1
How to Get the Very Best Coffee at About Ten Cents a Pound.--In these war times it is quite an object to make economical investments in this article, but aside from this, the coffee that you can make from this recipe will be found far superior to the very best you can get anywhere, either North or South, and those who give it a fair trial will be unwilling to go back even to the best Java.
Take sweet potatoes and after peeling them, cut them up into small pieces about the size of the joint of your little finger, dry them either in the sun or by the fire, (sun dried probably the best,) and then parch and grind the same as coffee. Take two thirds of this to one third of coffee to a making.
Try it, not particularly for its economy but for its superiority over any coffee you ever tasted.
[LITTLE ROCK] DAILY STATE JOURNAL, November 8, 1861, p.
2, c. 1
Substitute for Coffee—Dr. Polterin, in the Mobile Tribune, recommends the acorn of our native oak as a substitute for coffee. It is pronounced an excellent remedial agent, as well as a source of economy.
AUSTIN STATE GAZETTE
[TEX.], November 9, 1861, p. 4, c. 2
Save your okra seeds. Okra is the best substitute for coffee that is known. Besides this, the okra plant will kill out noxious weeds, even coco, better than any other known means. The okra plant makes a shade so dense, that nothing will grow in it. Gardens that have been allowed to go to the weeds have in this way been cleared of them. Fields may be in the same way. An acre of okra will produce seen enough to furnish a plantation of fifty negroes with coffee in every way equal to that imported from Rio. The green pods taken from an acre of okra and dried, would furnish the best thickening for soup in the winter, that could be made. Okra is the most valuable plant that is raised. Save your okra seeds.--Telegraph.
DAILY CHRONICLE & SENTINEL [AUGUSTA, GA], November 13, 1861, p. 3, c.
Mr. Editor: In reference to
a paragraph in your paper on Acorn Coffee, allow me to remark that it has long
been a substitute for coffee in foreign countries, and especially for children,
it is considered more healthy and desirable.
We are happy to state that an enterprising citizen, Mr. F. C. Ludekens, has given some attention to the manufacture of this article, and has employed many poor children during the fall in gathering the soundest and best acorns.
We have not been initiated in the different processes of his manufacture, for which we hear Mr. L. has erected costly machinery, but can only speak of the coffee itself as a most excellent beverage.
SEMI-WEEKLY RALEIGH REGISTER, December 4, 1861, p. 2,
Coffee.—A friend gives us the result of experiments in coffee-making, which, at this time, may prove serviceable to housekeepers. The "Old Dominion" coffee-pot is highly recommended, inasmuch as it makes the beverage clearer and better than any other, besides being economical. wheat is now much used with coffee, and the following is the way to prepare it: Get some red wheat, (for there is as much difference between white and red wheat as between Rio and Laguayra coffee,) soak it in warm water until the bran or outside becomes a little soft, (a few minutes will suffice,) take it from the water, and parch it as you would coffee; have one fifth as much coffee ready parched, and just as they get done, mix them in a pan over the fire, stirring in at the same time some butter, or, if you prefer clearing at first, some white of an egg; then prepare your mixture in an "Old Dominion," and you will thank us for a good cup of coffee.
ALBANY [GA.] PATRIOT,
December 12, 1861, p. 2, c. 3
A Good Substitute for Coffee--At the present time, when coffee is selling at a dollar a pound the following suggestion from a correspondent of a Southern paper, is worth trying:
Many worthless substitutes for coffee have been named. The acorn need only be tried once to be discarded. Corn meal and grits can be easily detected by the taste. Rye is only tolerable. Oakra [sic] seed is excellent, but costs about a dollar a pound, which puts it entirely out of the question. What, then, can we use? We want something that tastes like coffee, smells like it, and looks like it. We have just the thing in the sweet potato. When properly prepared, I defy any one to detect the difference between it and a cup of pure Rio.
Preparation--Peel your potatoes and slice them rather thin; dry them in the air or on a stove; then cut into pieces small enough to go into the coffee mil, then grind it. Two tablespoons full of ground coffee and three or four of ground potatoes will make eight or nine cups of coffee, clear, pure and well tasted.
The above is worthy of a trial. We have thoroughly tested its qualities, and can perceive no difference in taste from the genuine coffee. One table spoonful of ground coffee to two of the ground potatoe [sic] makes five cups full of a cheap, pleasant and healthy beverage. It is preferable to parch the potatoe [sic] in thin slices by the sun, as the parching or drying will be more regular, and not so apt to burn as when parched on a stove. We regard it as every way equal to Rio, Java, or the Mocha coffee.
TENNESSEE BAPTIST, December 21, 1861, p. 4, c. 2
We Have Tried It.—We have been somewhat skeptical about the various substitutes that have been proposed for coffee.—We have doubted whether any thing would have the flavor of the genuine article. But, "the proof of the pudding is in the eating." We have tried the okra coffee, and had we not known it to be okra, we should have supposed it the best of Laguyra or Java. It has all the rich spicy aroma of the genuine article, and we have no doubt, is equally nutricious [sic] and probably less injurious.
We would advise all our friends to reserve a large space in their gardens or farms, for planting okra. It will do, and no mistake, blockade or no blockade.—Mississippi Baptist.
[LITTLE ROCK] ARKANSAS TRUE DEMOCRAT, December 26,
1861, p. 3, c. 3
Rio coffee is selling in Baltimore at 16½ cents wholesale. Rye(o) coffee, a superior quality, is selling in Little Rock at from 3 to 4 cents per pound. Who cares for the blockade!
[LITTLE ROCK] ARKANSAS TRUE DEMOCRAT, January 9, 1862,
p. 3, c. 6
We have received a letter from a friend stating that he had tried acorns as a substitute for coffee. He complains of an unripe taste which will be got rid of by cutting the acorns and letting them dry. In other respects he thinks the substitute is admirable, and says that if coffee could be had for ten cents a pound and acorns for fifteen cents, he would prefer to buy the acorns. He adds that he has been an habitual coffee drinker for fifteen years, and unless he drank two cups of coffee in the morning, had a headache all day. But one cup of good acorn coffee has the happy effect of freeing him from headache and he thinks the acorn equal to that of Mocha.—Let our readers gather a few acorns, cut them up, dry them, parch like coffee and try them. White oak mast is preferred by some. The different oaks yield acorns that make coffee different in its astringent properties and flavors.
[SC], January 16, 1862, p. 1, c. 1
Richmond, January 13.
. . . Rye is the coffee now in general use at the boarding houses, and the substitute for tea is believed, by the best judges, to be hay. Hermes.
[LITTLE ROCK] ARKANSAS TRUE DEMOCRAT, January 16, 1862, p.
2, c. 4
Several weeks ago we stated that acorns were a good substitute for coffee, and since gave the substance of letters from a friend who had tried it. The Gazette republishes this and commenting upon it, says:
["]If the writer be not mistaken, and we hope he is not, the oak mast will be of additional importance. We have heard of persons having sheet iron stomachs, which we always doubted, but it does seem to us that the continued use of acorn coffee would have the effect of tanning the stomach, and making it as tough as leather. Let some one try the experiment and see what is in it.["]
The tannic or tanning properties of the oak is strongly exhibited in the bark, but it by no means follows that the acorns contain it in any considerable quantity. The bark of the chinquapin tree is fully as astringent and contains as much tannin, but the chinquapin nut does not have the effect of tanning the stomach. Let the Captain taste the bark of an apple tree or of a peach tree, and see how widely they differ in taste and other properties from the apple or peach which grew on them.
Some fifteen years ago we were acquainted with a wealthy man who drank acorn coffee in preference to any other kind. Several of the planters in the "up country" of Carolina used it altogether. It was often a subject of conversation, and a scientific man who married in the family of one of Carolina's most distinguished sons, made an analysis of the acorn and coffee berry. His capabilities for the task will be admitted, when it is known that he was regarded in the schools of Paris as one of the best analytical chemists there, and upon his return to this country was engaged in several scientific enterprises of great importance. We have not the formula now of his analysis, and it would be, perhaps, too technical for the general reader. We remember that the acorn and the coffee berry had certain constituents in common, and upon these depended the effects produced by coffee, such as wakefulness, gentle stimulation, and others. This also gave a similarity in flavor. In fact, the acorn from the white oak, afforded a softer beverage than the coffee and those who used it greatly preferred it. The black oak, red oak and other different varieties of the quercus have acorns that make a stronger or more astringent coffee, but not so strong as the common kinds of coffee often sold.
We find the following in a late number of the Memphis Avalanche, and reproduce it to show that we are not alone in our estimate of acorn coffee.
["] A correspondent, writing to the Picayune, gives the following interesting account of a substitute for coffee, which is so different from any we have yet heard of, that we give it for the benefit of those who wish to experiment in supplying what has been an article of necessity with us in the South, and which is now placed beyond our reach for a time. He says:
At a Medico-Botanical society of London, in 1837, the President introduced to the notice of the members a new beverage which very much resembled the real coffee. It was made from acorns, peeled, chopped and roasted. The acorn, which gives out this fragrant drink, is well known to be the fruit of the oak of our forests, of which there are a great variety and abundance in almost all of the States. Whether the white, the black, or the red species of quercus acorn is used for this purpose, is not stated. The experiment, however, is simple and easy, and ought to be tried. There are reasons why it should prove to be a better substitute than any yet offered for the real berry. The chincapin tree, I think, belongs to the same genus, though of much smaller growth, produces a similar, but smaller acorn, and from its peculiar flavor, I am much inclined to think the chincapin, properly prepared, will make a first rate cup of coffee.["]
We suppose it is too late to try it this season but let any of our readers make the experiment. We have seen old coffee drinkers, who professed to be connoissieurs [sic] and gourmands, tried with a cup of it without knowing it was made from acorns, who smacked their lips over it and pronounced it excellent.
[ATLANTA, GA], January 18, 1862, p. 2, c. 3
--A soldier's food should be well cooked; (no tainted meat) his meals at regular hours; no violent exercise after eating; a hearty breakfast, and at least one meal of animal food a day, with plenty of vegetables, as carrots, onions, rice, etc., ripe fruit, and after exposure or fatigue, good hot soup, cleanliness observed, and the feet kept dry if possible. He should have coffee once or twice a day, but if not to be got, the substitutes are, acorns stripped and roasted, ground sassafras nuts [sic?], grated crust of bread, rye or wheat, parched with butter, beech root, horse beans, etc. The substitutes for tea are--the yopon [sic], rosemary, strawberry leaves. But the best home tea is made of good, well made meadow hay (infusion). While on the subject, I'll say that starch can be made of frosted potatoes, and the tops make good potash when burnt; and the myrtle, glycerine, etc., will furnish the other component of soap.
MEMPHIS DAILY APPEAL
[JACKSON, MS], January 20, 1863, p. 1, c. 2
One of our exchanges publishes a new recipe for making coffee, which we recommend to the steward of our boarding house. Take coffee grains and pop corn of each an equal quantity. Roast the same together. The corn will hop out, and what remains will be unadulterated coffee.
[SC], January 24, 1862, p. 1, c. 4
We make the following extracts from a letter addressed by a planter of Chapel Hill, Texas, to a gentleman of Mobile, which breathes a spirit of patriotism even more ardent in the portions which we neglect than in those which we make room for, because of the general character of the information contained:
. . . "You say give us coffee and salt and a continuation of warm weather, &c. Now we do not care a fig for coffee, as we have the best substitute in the world, viz: sweet milk and butter milk; it is better adapted to the constitution, with more nutriment. We substitute a mixture of okra and coffee, say one fourth coffee. The difference is not noticed by visitors, not even when told. We can use, if we choose, sage tea, green tea, or the old woman's yopon, that "kept her out of heaven twenty years, bless God," or grubheisen, better known as sassafras. .
[LITTLE ROCK] ARKANSAS TRUE DEMOCRAT, January 30, 1862,
p. 3, c. 5
In 1860, the importation of coffee in the then United States was the enormous amount of two hundred millions of pounds, at a cost of fifteen millions of dollars. The people of the South use doubly as much coffee as the people of the North. Nearly one-half of this vast sum was expended by the people of the Confederacy. If a substitute could be found, it would save us seven millions of dollars a year.
[LITTLE ROCK] ARKANSAS TRUE DEMOCRAT, February 6, 1862,
p. 4, c. 3
A soldier's food should be well cooked; (no tainted meat,) his meals at regular hours; no violent exercise after eating; a hearty breakfast and at least one meal of animal food a day, with plenty of vegetables, as carrots, onions, rice, etc., ripe fruit, and, after exposure or fatigue, good hot soup, cleanliness observed, and the feet kept dry if possible. He should have coffee once or twice a day, but if not to be got, the substitutes are—acorns, stripped and roasted, ground sassafras nuts, grated crust of bread, rye or wheat, parched with butter, beech root, horse beans, etc. The substitutes for tea are—the yopon, rosemary, strawberry leaves. But the best home made tea is made of good well made meadow hay (infusion). While on the subject I'll say that starch can be made of frosted potatoes, and the tops make good potash when burnt; and the myrtle, glycerine, etc., will furnish the other components of soap.
NATCHEZ DAILY COURIER
[MS], February 7, 1862, p. 1, c. 5
Cotton Seed Coffee. We have been favored by a friend, with a sample of Cotton Seed Coffee prepared by Dr. H. Ravenel, of Poosilee, St. John's Berkley, which we had served up at breakfast yesterday morning, and found very palatable. The Cotton Seed is parched, and ground or powdered, as if it were the Coffee bean, and prepared for use accordingly. The aroma is very like that of Coffee, but rather more like that of Brom [?]. We have little doubt that a mixture of one-third or one-half Coffee, and the rest of ground or powdered Cotton Seed, would easily pass for good, if not pure, Coffee.
We have also tried Rye alone, and in mixture with one-third Coffee, and found both preparations good substitutes for the aromatic bean.--Charleston Courier.
[SC], February 8, 1862, p. 2, c. 1
Rye Coffee vs. Rio--How to make the former.--To the Editor of the Charleston Mercury: Take Rye, boil it, but not so much as to burst the grain; then dry it, either in the sun, on a stove or a kiln, after which it is ready for parching, to be used like the real Coffee Bean. Prepared in this manner it can hardly be distinguished from the genuine Coffee. The Rye, when boiled and dried, will keep for any length of time, so as to have it ready whenever wanted for parching. F. W. Clauussen.
DAILY CHRONICLE & SENTINEL [AUGUSTA, GA], March 11, 1862, p. 2, c. 2
Rye Coffee.--We find the following in the LaGrange Reporter:
Many of our people are daily in the habit of using rye as a substitute for coffee, without being aware of the fact, that the grain when burnt contains upwards of fifty per cent of phosphoric acid, which acts injuriously upon the whole stony structure. In the young it effectually prevents the full development of the osseous tissues, and in the old, it lays the foundation for dry gangrene. It possesses the power of dissolving the phosphate of lime, which constitutes upwards of fifty per cent of the bone in man. The same power it exerts over utero gestation, and thereby brings about all the concomitant evils of abortion. Cases of this kind have come under my professional observation during a few months past, and I think the facts ought to be spread before the people. L. J. Robert, M. D.
DAILY CHRONICLE & SENTINEL [AUGUSTA, GA], March 15, 1862, p. 2, c. 2
To the editors of the Chronicle & Sentinel:
An extract in your daily of Tuesday, signed L. J. Roberts, M. D., taken from the LaGrange Reporter, contains two such grave errors, that we cannot refrain from correcting them, particularly as many persons who use rye as a substitute for coffee, might be frightened out of an innocent beverage.
The extract says: "The grain when burnt, contains fifty per cen. of phosphoric acid." Now, unscientific people would suppose this to mean when parched. We suppose the Doctor intended the ash of the grain. What is the true analysis of rye according to the best authorities? 1,000 pounds produces only 10 1/2 pounds of ash; and of this 10 1/2 pounds only 0.46 of a pound of phosphoric acid; not quite half a pound to 1,000 pounds of the grain, and not quite 5 per cent of the ash instead of upwards of 50 per cent; being not quite the one fifth of one per cent of the solid grain. Besides, the Doctor forgets that not one particle of the earthy salts is probably held in solution by a common weak decoction of the rye; and if the whole grain was swallowed there would only be the medium amount of phosphoric acid contained in wheat and other cereals, just about enough to make bone instead of destroying it.
The effects of rye, or the phosphoric acid in it, on utero-gestation, is equally fallacious, and quite as grave an error. It is the ergot of rye that produces abortion, not the common, healthy grain used for coffee. It is a long, black, stinking grain, easily distinguished from the other, and only occurring under certain unfavorable circumstances. The common rye is quite as innocent as wheat or coffee in this respect.
Will the papers (we have seen it in several,) which published the extract, give this an insertion? E. M. Pendleton, M. D.
Sparta, Ga., March 12th, 1862.
DAILY CHRONICLE & SENTINEL [AUGUSTA, GA], March 27, 1862, p. 3, c. 2
"Who shall decide when doctors disagree."
Mr. Editor:--My short article on rye coffee, which appeared in your paper
two weeks since, seems to have excited a considerable interest, not only on the
part of editors, but also among some of our medical fraternity.
In the Augusta Chronicle & Sentinel of the 15th inst., Dr. E. M.
Pendleton, of Sparta, Ga., has denounced the said article as containing
"two grave errors." The
first in my quantitative analysis, and the second in "the effect of the
rye, or the phosphoric acid in it, or the utero-gestation."
Now, I having asserted, and the Doctor denying, throws the onus probandi upon him, and not upon myself. However, as I am not desirous of controversy, being pressed by professional duties, I will simply refer the Doctor to "Booth's Encyclopaedia of Chemistry," page 861, (the best authority extant, and as this book is not accessible to all, I copy thefrom [sic] verbatim et literatim Fresentus' and Will's analysis of the grain of the rye when burnt or reduced to ashes, viz:
Lime...................................... 7.65 [?]
The above, then, proves conclusively the correctness of my quantitative
analysis. Now as regards the
effects as of phosphoric acid, which I have described, not only upon utero-gestation
but also upon the whole osseous structure, I presume Dr. Pendleton himself, will
Although the editor of the Chronicle & Sentinel may "stick to his beverage," the so called "startling revelation of the LaGrange physician" is literally true.
With reference to "Ergot," I will only add that I never once mentioned this article. I have no time to write further. With this I dismiss the subject. L. J. Robert, M. D.
RYE COFFEE NOT A POISON--AN EMINENT CHEMIST'S OPINION.
To the Editors of the Delta:
I notice in the morning a paragraph extracted from the LaGrange Reporter, which, allowed to go uncontradicted, may produce much mischief. In it a Dr. Robert states that "the habit of using rye as a substitute for coffee, acts injuriously upon the bony structures, from the amount of phosphoric acid it contains." In the young he says "it effectually prevents the full development of the osseous tissues, and in the old, it lays the foundation for dry gangrene." It also possesses the power of dissolving the phosphate of lime in the bones, and produces abortions, &c. Now the whole of this is one tissue of absurdity and error. Rye in common with all the cereal grains, contains a large proportion of phosphoric acid, this however never being in the free state, but always combined with lime, and its proportion is somewhat less than that of wheat, which the sapient Dr. Robert does not seem to condemn.
The great value of the cereals as food, consists in this very amount of phosphate of lime, which is absolutely necessary for human nutrition, the body containing upwards of eight pounds of this compound. None contain free phosphoric acid, which, however, contrary to the dictum of Dr. Robert, (unless in a very concentrated form,) does not dissolve phosphate of lime, never produces dry gangrene, and cannot cause abortion. It is true that rye, under certain conditions, is subject to a disease resembling the smut in wheat, and if made into bread and eaten in this condition, might produce serious effects; but even if the spurred rye were used for coffee, the process of roasting would effectually destroy this noxious tendency. The public may rest assured the rye coffee is perfectly innocent, and may be used with as much safety as the finest Mocha. Dr. Robert must have drawn largely upon his imagination for his facts, and is only another illustration that a little learning is a dangerous thing.
I. L. Crawcour, M. D.
Prof. of Chemistry, N. O. School of Medicine.
[LITTLE ROCK] ARKANSAS TRUE DEMOCRAT, March 27, 1862,
p. 3, c. 3
Rye Coffee.—Important Information.—Many of our people are daily in the habit of using rye as a substitute for coffee without being aware of the fact, that the grain when burnt contains upwards of fifty per cent of phosphoric acid, which acts injuriously upon the whole bony structure. In the young it effectually prevents the full development of the osseous tissues, and in the old, it lays the foundation for dry gangrene. It possesses the power of dissolving the phosphate of lime, which constitutes upwards of fifty per cent of the bone in man. The same power it exerts over utero gestation, and thereby bring about all the concomitant evil of abortion. Cases of this kind have come under my professional observation during a few months past, and I think the facts ought to be spread before the people.
L. J. Roberts, M. D.
LaGrange, Ga. LaGrange Reporter.
[SC], March 31, 1862, p. 1, c. 1
Seed as a Substitute for Coffee.
To the Editor of the Charleston Mercury:--Seeing a notice, some time ago,
that cotton seed was a good substitute for coffee, I was induced to try a
mixture of two-thirds cotton seed and one-third coffee, and found it answered
extremely well. The seed merely
requires to be washed and parched before grinding, the same as coffee.
We have been using it for six or seven weeks constantly in our family,
and many of our friends who drank it without knowing what the mixture was,
pronounced it equal to the best coffee. A
friend suggests that parched cotton seed in future may be known as
"Carolina Mocha." As
these are times in which all are called upon to practice economy, I send you the
result of my experiment, requesting an insertion as early as convenient, in your
An Old Housekeeper.
REPUBLICAN, April 2, 1862, p. 1, c. 3
Seed as a Substitute for Coffee.
To the Editor of
the Charleston Mercury:
Seeing a notice, some time ago, that cotton seed was a good substitute for coffee, I was induced to try a mixture of two-thirds cotton seen and one-third coffee, and found it answered extremely well. The seed merely requires to be washed and parched before grinding, the same as coffee. We have been using it for six or seven weeks constantly in our family, and many of our friends who drank it without knowing what the mixture was, pronounced it equal to the best coffee.—A friend suggests that parched cotton seed in future may be known as "Carolina Mocha." As there are times in which all are called upon to practice economy, I send you the result of my experiment, requesting an insertion as early as convenient, in your paper.
An Old Housekeeper.
[LITTLE ROCK] ARKANSAS TRUE DEMOCRAT, April 10, 1862, p. 2,
An unfortunate medico of Lee Grange [sic], Georgia, named Robert, promulgated the theory that rye coffee was injurious. Medical and scientific men all over the Confederacy are pitching into his theory and exposing its absurdity.
DAILY CHRONICLE & SENTINEL [AUGUSTA, GA], April 12, 1862, p. 3, c. 2
the Chronicle & Sentinel.
Review of Prof. Crawcour's Article.
"I notice in the morning papers," says Prof. Crawcour," a
paragraph extracted from the LaGrange Reporter, which if allowed to go
uncontradicted may produce mischief."
Were the Prof. has evidently conceived the wind, and brought forth the whirlwind, is the shape of a monstrous nullity! What mischief can possibly result from spreading before the people, a well authenticated fact with reference to Rye as a substitute for Coffee? When I give the analysis of the grain of Rye, reduced to ashes, to be upwards of fifty per cent. of Phosphoric acid, I do it upon the very best authority, and to which every man is at liberty to refer. See Booth's Encyclopaedia of Chemistry (Large London Edition) page 861 and Liebig's Agricultural Chemistry (from the fourth London Edition) page 249. Is there any mischief in this? When I say that Phosphoric acid is a solvent of the phosphate of Lime (one of the essential elements of bone, and constituting upwards of fifty per cent. of the bone in man) and refer to the "United States Dispensatory," page 817 in proof of this fact; can there be any mischief in this? When I assert that Phosphorus (which by uniting with Oxygen, forms Phosphoric Acid) is a violent and irritant poison, so much so that the manufacturers of Lucifer matches are liable to [?]osis of the jaw-bone, and refer as proof on this point to the same book (U.S.D.) pages 554 and 556, can there be any mischief in this? Or when I say that from my own personal observation I am inducted to believe that Rye Coffee is injurious in consequence of the large amount of Phosphoric acid it contains; can there be any mischief in this?
O tempora! O mores! The immortal Professor has denounced all this, as "One tissue of absurdity and error," and seems to predicate the whole of his denunciation, upon the simple fact that I said nothing about the analysis of Wheat!!
Now the self styled Professor of Chemistry must remember that my article was written under the caption "Rye Coffee;" not "Wheat," potatoes, okra, burnt syrup, or any other substitute for coffee; and hence I was no more responsible for the analysis of "Wheat," than for the analysis of any of these other substitutes. Rye was the only subject under consideration, and as far as I could learn, the only substitute for coffee, within the precincts of the circulation of the LaGrange Reporter. Again, my second article which appeared in the Chronicle & Sentinel of the 27th ultimo, immediately over the Professor's reply, contained the full analysis of Rye (grain) and from this, no many of ordinary intelligence would for one moment presume that I ever intended to be understood as saying, that the Phosphoric acid in the ashes of the grain of Rye, was not in a state of combination.
Even in my original article I left not the slightest room for such an absurd conjecture! I simply stated that "the ashes of the grain of Rye, contained upwards of fifty per cent of Phosphoric acid." The remaining fifty per cent. evidently was in combination with it. Surely, Professor, "much learning doth make thee mad." Lastly (though not least,) the Professor asserts that the process of roasting effectually destroys this noxious tendency of Spurred Rye," and therefore argues that "Rye Coffee may be used with as much safety as the finest Mocha." This is most superlatively absurd! The chemical analysis of the grain when burnt even to ashes, discovers, as I have already stated, the existence of the poisonous compound. How, then, can "roasting destroy its noxious tendency." Well may the immortal Professor exclaim that, which by sad experience he has learned. "A little learning is a dangerous thing."
In conclusion, with all sincerity of soul the "sapient Dr. Robert" exhorts the immortal Professor to drink deep of books not the Pierian spring. L. J. Robert, M. D.
P.S.--All papers that have published Prof. Crawcour's article, will please copy the above.
LaGrange, Ga., April 8, 1862.
REPUBLICAN, July 19, 1862, p. 2, c. 7
By W. B. Griffin.
Coffee and Chickory.
Tuesday, the 22d
instant in front of store, commencing at 10 o'clock, will be sold,
Prime Green Rio Coffee
A very superior substitute for Coffee, generally used
as such in Europe.
THE SOUTHERN BANNER
[ATHENS, GA], August 20, 1862, p. 3, c. 4
Substitute for Coffee.
Chickory, at R. M. Smith's Drug Store, No. 10 Broad St. Aug.20.
[SC], October 15, 1862, p. 2, c. 1
A Few Words About Chicory.--Chicory, Succory (Cichorium Intybus), a perennial herbaceous plant, indigenous to Europe, but naturalized in this country. It has been found that the root, cut into thin slices, roasted and ground, is an admirable substitute for coffee; and, when combined with the latter in the proportion of two to one, improves the flavor of coffee very much. In these blockade times, when none but the wealthy can indulge in pure coffee, the chicory will be found to answer all its purposes. Chicory is used to a great extent in Europe, and throughout Germany coffee is scarcely ever prepared without the addition of a portion of it. Several of our own citizens are now using chicory, and speak of it in the highest terms.
[LITTLE ROCK] ARKANSAS TRUE DEMOCRAT, October 22, 1862,
p. 1, c. 3
Acorn Coffee.—A friend who has tried acorns as a substitute for coffee, says that he is satisfied it is the best substitute yet found. H took the white oak mast, cut it up and dried the pieces by heating them. He is of the opinion that by drying in the sun and air, it would be better. Others are trying the experiment. The acorns should be hulled, cut up in the size of grains of coffee, well dried, and then parched. Experiments with the different kind of mast, the white oak, the black, etc., will give coffee differing more or less, in astringent qualities and in their power to refresh the system. A number of families have gathered acorns enough to last them a year, and we would not be surprised if acorn coffee should come into general use and favor.
REPUBLICAN, October 31, 1862, p. 2, c. 3
Nobility of Europe
Improve the Flavor
REPUBLICAN, October 31, 1862, p. 2, c. 4
One Who Use
Say it is
The Best Substitute
[SC], November 19, 1862, p. 1, c. 1-2
Vernonsville, November 14.
. . . You cannot buy wheat here under six dollars per bushel, and very inferior at that. Rye cannot be obtained either for sowing or as a substitute for coffee....
MONTGOMERY WEEKLY ADVERTISER, November 19, 1862, p. 1,
A friend informs the Little Rock True Democrat that white oak mast is the best substitute for coffee yet found. The acorns should be hulled, cut into the size of grains of coffee and then parched.
[BELLVILLE] TEXAS COUNTRYMAN, November 22, 1862, p. 1, c. 4
The following is well known in your city, but may be new to you country readers; I knew it is to a good many in this section:
To make Coffee:--Take a teacupful of green coffee; parch and grind in the usual way; take a quart of molasses and burn it (or candy it) till every particle of molasses taste is burnt out of it; then set it off the fire and let it cool a few seconds until the fiery heat is gone; then stir your ground coffee into it well, and pour out into greased plates to cool. To make coffee, a piece of this substance about the size of a thimble will make a strong cup of good coffee by pouring hot water on it and letting it stand a few minutes; or take a piece of it about the size of your thumb and make in the usual way and it will do a small family one time.—Telegraph.
REPUBLICAN, November 27, 1862, p. 1, c. 3
the Savannah Republican.]
Practical Hints for Hard Times.
"What man has done, man may do."
13. SUBSTITUTES FOR COFFEE.—Except in its stimulating
qualities, and its peculiar and delicate aroma, coffee can be so perfectly
counterfeited as to defy detection, by mixing together [illegible] the following
substitutes in such [illegible] that the coffee taste of all of them shall
predominate, and the peculiar flavor of no one of them shall be perceived:
viz: Rye, wheat, barley
(scalded and then parched,) okra seed, rice (parched black, but not ground,)
sweet potatoes (cut into ribbons, or into dice, dried in the sun and then
parched,) corn grits (parched to a dark brown,) sweet acorns, chiccory (parched
brown, then broken and ground.) These
should be parched separately, and then combined in about equal proportions, or
in such proportion as experiment shall decide to be necessary.
If possible, a little coffee should be combined, simply for
truth's sake. The best critic can
scarcely distinguish between the spurious compound and the real coffee.
[SC], February 4, 1863, p. 1, c. 4
One of our exchanges publishes a new recipe for making coffee, which we recommend to the steward at our boarding house. Take coffee grains and pop corn of each an equal quantity. Roast the same together. The corn will pop out, and what remains will be unadulterated coffee.
THE SOUTHERN BANNER
[ATHENS, GA], February 11, 1863, p. 3, c. 4
Substitute for Coffee.
Mr. Archer Griffeth, of Ala., gives us the following directions for
preparing okra seed as a substitute for coffee.
He expresses himself as highly pleased with the beverage:
Parch over a good fire and stir well until it is dark brown; then take off the fire and before the seed get cool put the white of one egg to two tea-cups full of okra, and mix well. Put the same quantity of seed in the coffee pot as you would coffee, boil well and settle as coffee.
Directions for Planting and Cultivating.--Prepare a rich spot as for cotton, by bedding 3 1/2 feet. About the 10th of April open the ridges and sow the seed, and when up, chop out to 12 inches in the drill and cultivate the same as cotton. it will grow 6 to 8 feet high and will yield abundantly--one acre of good land producing ten bushels of seed. The seed will be dry in July.
Since writing the above, we have tried some of the okra coffee prepared by the above directions, and find it better than pure Rio and almost equal to old Java.--Try it.
THE SOUTHERN BANNER
[ATHENS, GA], February 11, 1863, p. 3, c. 6
A Small lot of Okra
Seed--the best substitute for coffee--for sale at James I. Colt's.
[MARSHALL] TEXAS REPUBLICAN, February 12, 1863, p. 1, c. 4
A new substitute for coffee, viz.: take equal portions of popcorn and coffee, and parch it together till all the popcorn pops out.
MONTGOMERY WEEKLY ADVERTISER, February 25, 1863, p. 2,
The New York papers publish reports of an investigation held in the case of a family in Brooklyn who were supposed to have been poisoned by the use of rye coffee. The entire family were suffering; one of them described as being very sick, face bloated and disfigured like the dropsy, eyelids distended, eyeballs bloodshot and dilated, headache and great dizziness. A lot of the rye coffee they had been using was taken and a strong dose tried upon a dog, which made him exhibit great restlessness and weakness, and increased his pulse from 100 to 172. The Health Officer reported that the coffee contained noxious ingredients of a poisonous character, and ordered the destruction of the whole stock at the place where it was obtained. He adds that nobody should be surprised at these effects of rye coffee, "for with the rye itself, raw ergot and other poisonous plants, and unless their seed be carefully separated from the rye, poisoning is inevitable."
SAN ANTONIO HERALD, March 7, 1863, p. 2, c. 5
How to Make a Good Article of Coffee.--Take coffee grains and pop-corn, of each an equal quantity. Roast the same together. The corn will hop out, and what remains will be unadulterated coffee.--[Mobile Register.
[ATLANTA, GA], April 10, 1863, p. 1, c.3-4
...Columbus is considered the Lowell of the South. It contains 8,000 inhabitants, and it is situated on the banks of the Chattahoochee, at the head of navigation.... . . Here chickory is used as a substitute for coffee. Rice is mixed up with flour and corn meal. It is put into biscuits, batter cakes, hominy, &c. Sweet potatoes are in great abundance, therefore they are eaten at all meals. . . . And the signs over the grog shops of this city are in good taste, viz: The Smile, The Pleasant House, &c. . .
[MARSHALL] TEXAS REPUBLICAN, June 13, 1863, p. 1, c. 3
The Barley crop has assumed an importance that entitles it to mention. It is a fine substitute for corn, being excellent feed. It is a good substitute for coffee. Our Texan friends will see its fine crops can be raised and harvested by June, and if the corn crop fails, they can fall back on the barley.
WEEKLY ADVERTISER, September 23, 1863, p. 2, c. 1
Okra Coffee.To those who, like ourselves, are too poor to drink coffee at seven or ten dollars per pound, we can recommend a substitute which is as good to our taste as the original. We received from Col. James B. Merriwether, of this county, a specimen of okra seed, ground and parched, which had so much of the appearance and odor of the genuine coffee that, notwithstanding our prejudice against substitutes, we had prepared in the usual way, and found it as good as the best. We do not believe anybody could discover the difference. There is no reason why okra coffee should not be a most wholesome drink, as it certainly is a most pleasant one to our palate. It was certainly used in this country as early as 1821, and it may even at an earlier period.
THE SOUTHERN BANNER
[ATHENS, GA], October 28, 1863, p. 2, c. 5
...--But another important item is, to save the seeds of the persimmons after they have boiled, and you let out the slop, for they are excellent for coffee, rather stronger or rougher than the genuine Rio; hence, I mix two parts of dried sweet potatoes to one of persimmon seed. Dr. Buck says this coffee is equal to Java coffee! By the boiling the seeds are rid of all musilaginous substances, and just right for coffee or buttons. If you use them for buttons, the washer woman will hardly break them with her battling stick. For coffee they should be parched twice as long as any other substitute, so as to make them tender to the centre.
THE DAILY INTELLIGENCER
[ATLANTA, GA], November 8, 1863, p. 4, c. 2
But another important item is, to save the seeds of the persimmons after they have boiled, and you let out the slop, for they are excellent for coffee, rather stronger or rougher than the genuine Rio; hence I mix two parts of dried sweet potatoes to one of persimmon seed. Dr. Buck says this coffee is equal to Java coffee. By the boiling the seeds are rid of all mucilaginous substances, and are just right for coffee or button. If you use them for buttons the washer woman will hardly break them with her battling stick. For coffee they should be parched twice as long as any other substitute; so as to make them tender to the center.
MONTGOMERY WEEKLY ADVERTISER, November 18, 1863, p. 3,
Persimmon Coffee.—The Petersburg Express states that the seeds of the persimmon when roasted and ground produces a beverage, which cannot, even by old and experienced coffee drinkers, be distinguished from genuine coffee. We wish some of our lady readers would try the experiment and inform us as to the result.
CHARLESTON MERCURY, January 9, 1864, p. 1, c. 3
Richmond, Monday, January 4
. . . Reports of a want of food in Lee's army circulated yesterday. Some officers say there is an insufficiency of food, and of shoes and blankets. Others say there is a plenty, at least to eat. Many officers are here in town and they look blooming. Really some of them are splendid looking young fellows--healthy, handsomely dressed and game looking. The privates may not fare so well, but I hear of no complaints. They make excellent coffee out of toasted "hard tack," use fodder blades for yeast, and by hook or by crook get along finely. Talking about substitutes for coffee, let me advise you to try persimmon seed parched and ground. It is the exact thing, so far as taste is concerned.
January 20, 1864, p. 1, c. 4
Coffee and Its Substitutes.--The use of coffee as a beverage seems to have originated among the Turks in Arabia, from whence it was carried to Europe in 1669. It has gradually become a national beverage to Europeans and Americans, as well as the Moslems, and it has been called one of the chief necessaries of life among the people. The coffee bean is the seed of the Coffee Arabica, a shrub which grows to about the height of 30 feet, but it is usually cut down to about six feet, to increase the yield of the bean. Its cultivation was confined until within the past century to Egypt and Arabia, but it is now cultivated in the West Indies and East India Islands; also in Brazil upon a most extensive scale. A single tree sometimes yields about 20 pounds of beans, and about 1100 pounds are obtained as the crop of an acre of land. There are a number of varieties of coffee, but Mocha or Arabian is still the most famous. Its beans are small and of a dark yellow color; Java is a larger bean, and the color is a paler yellow; West India and Brazilian coffee is of a bluish grey color.
Physiologists have endeavored to account for the extended use of coffee by ascribing to it a peculiar quality for preventing the waste of animal tissue in the living being. This principle is called caffeine, and is composed of carbon 8, nitrogen hydrogen 10, and oxygen 3 parts. Roasted coffee contains about 1240 parts of caffeine. In roasting coffee great care should be exercised not to overheat it, because the caffeine in it is so liable to volatilize. The best temperature to roast coffee is 362 degrees Fah., and the operation should be performed in a close revolving vessel. When the beans have assumed a bright brown color, they should be cooled, if possible, in the vessel in which they have been roasted, so as to retain all the aroma that has been developed by the roasting operation. Burnt coffee beans are just as suitable for making an infusion as charred wood. Upon no account, therefore, should coffee beans be so heated in roasting as to char them. Coffee should never be boiled, because the boiling action volatilizes the aromatic resin in it, and this constitutes nearly three per cen. of the beans. It should be ground as finely as possible, and scalded with water heated to the boiling point. It can be clarified with the white of eggs or isinglass. This information relates to pure coffee. In Germany and England the poorer classes, who cannot afford to buy coffee, use mixtures of it, and in many cases, other substances as entire substitutes. In Germany dried yellow turnips and chicory root mixed together are employed as a substitute; chicory is also very generally mixed with common coffee in England. Lately several mixtures and substitutes for coffee have become more common among our own laboring people on account of the great rise in the price of coffee. In some of our country villages German families roast acorns, and use these as substitutes for coffee. Roasted rye is an old and well-known substitute, and so is "Cobbett's coffee," which consists of roasted corn. Many persons roast white beans and peas, and mix them with coffee; others roast carrots and beets, and make a mixture of them with coffee. In some parts of France a mixture of equal parts of roasted chestnuts and coffee is used.
It makes a very superior beverage to chicory, turnips, and all the other articles mentioned. The substitutes for coffee are innumerable, and so far as taste is concerned, this is a mere matter of cultivation. If any of these substitutes for coffee contained caffeine or a similar principle, they would answer the same purpose, and their use should be inculcated; but in all the analysis that we have examined of chicory, turnips, carrots, beets, peas, beans, corn and rye, no such substance as caffeine is mentioned, therefore they are not true substitutes for it in a chemical and physiological sense. We have been unable to obtain a satisfactory analysis of chestnuts and acorns, but it is well known that these contain tannic acid, and it is certain the caffeic acid is very nearly allied to it: hence they may have a close resemblance to coffee, in taste, and perhaps in effect also.--Scientific American.
MONTGOMERY WEEKLY ADVERTISER, January 27, 1864, p. 3,
A friend, who has tried persimmon seeds in coffee, says he will defy any man to detect the difference in the taste between a decoction of roasted persimmon seeds and the genuine Java—not Rio—which can be imitated successfully, as we are informed, with parched ground peas and now and then a cockroach thrown in, says the Macon (Ga.) Telegraph.
THE SOUTHERN BANNER
[ATHENS, GA], February 4, 1864, p. 3, c. 5
Barley, Barley.--An excellent substitute for coffee, for sale by
Feb. 3 I.M. Kenney.
APPEAL [ATLANTA, GA], June 11, 1864, p. 1, c. 2
The English garden pea, picked from the vine when dry and roasted to a dark cinnamon brown, is said to produce a decoction resembling pure Java coffee in color and flavor.
ALBANY [GA.] PATRIOT,
June 30, 1864, p. 1, c. 4
A Substitute for Coffee.--A friend sent us some days ago an article which had every appearance of the well roasted ground Java coffee, with the request that we would try it and give our opinion of its merits as a substitute. We did so, and found it incomparably superior to anything that we have seen in use, not excepting the more common varieties of coffee. The taste is slightly pungent and most palatable, and we would not turn on our heel to exchange it for the genuine article. The preparation consists simply of the common English garden pea, picked from the vine when dry and roasted to a dark cinnamon brown. Try it.--Savannah Republican.
THE SOUTHERN BANNER
[ATHENS, GA], March 15, 1865, p. 1, c. 4
Editor Southern Cultivator:--Nobody has had more occasion to mourn over the blockade than that numerous and highly respectable class, the coffee topers. Many an one would cheerfully munch his dry crusts at breakfast, if he could wash them down with the cheering beverage which used, in former times, to atone for the short-comings of cooks and fortify him against a day of vexations. For the stimulating property to which both tea and coffee owe their chief value, there is unfortunately no substitute; the best we can do is to dilute the little stocks which still remain, and cheat the palate, if we cannot deceive the nerves. The best substitute which we have yet found for either tea or coffee, is plenty of good, rich milk, which is at least nutritive, if not stimulating. But alas! the price of butter plainly tells that milk is almost as scarce as coffee, and many persons want something hot to drive off the fogs of the morning. After many unsatisfactory trials of rye, wheat, corn, potatoes, okra, acorns, and almost everything else that can be purchased, we have found in molasses, we will not say a substitute for, but an adulteration of coffee, which leaves but little to be desired, but the stimulus. Don't be alarmed, Mr. Editor, we are not about to propose "long sweetening." Molasses when boiled down until it scorches, is converted into an intensely bitter substance, called by chemists caramel. Our method is to put a quart or more of sorghum syrup into any convenient vessel, and stew it down over a slow fire, as if making candy, stirring constantly until the syrup is burnt black; then pour it out into a greased plate to cool. The blackish porous mass thus obtained is pounded, when quite cold, in an iron mortar. We mix it with twice its bulk of ground coffee, and use a teaspoonful of this mixture for each person; thus one teaspoonful of caramel and two of coffee will make six cups of a beverage which, as far as taste is concerned, is far preferable to pure Rio coffee. The burnt molasses or caramel, attracts moisture when exposed to the air, and must, therefore, be kept in a close vessel. It would be well, for the same reason, to prepare it in small quantities. If the molasses is burnt too much, it is reduced to charcoal and loses all taste. By the way, though a very simple matter, many housekeepers do not know that it is perfectly easy to clear coffee by adding a small quantity of cold water, just as it "comes to a boil." CHEMICUS.
SMITH NEW ERA, October 22, 1864, p. 1, c. 1-3
Statement of a Former Resident.
the Rochester Democrat.]
Frank G. Radway left New York State in 1856, and went West to "try his fortune" in those new fields which enterprise was then marvelously developing, and where the artificial and unreal theft [?] had sprung up, which only the dreadful collapse of 1857 completely exposed. When the revival came, Radway drifted to Texas, to try again. There the rebellion caught him, and he has this summer, for the first time, found himself able to escape. . . . He represents the condition of the inhabitants as wretched in the extreme. . . . His meals, at hotel, and cabins where he stopped while travelling through Texas, cost him just $10 each, and they consisted of cornbread and dried beef, with corn coffee. . . .