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Memo of the Month.

NATIONAL BEER WHOLESALERS ASSOCIATION

Ronald A. Sarasin President

June

Dear Member of Congress:

Celebrate America's History With Beer

Do you know why the Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock in 1620? When the Pilgrims sailed for America, they had hoped to find land on which to settle that was fertile and ripe for planting with a pleasant climate. Instead they had to settle for stoney soil and harsh New England winters. Why did they have to cut their voyage short? Because they were running out of beer. An entry in the diary of a Mayflower passenger explains the unplanned landing at Plymouth Rock: "We could not now take time for further search ... our victuals being much spent, especially our bore ..." Each passenger aboard the Mayflower was rationed a gallon of beer per day. They drank beer instead of water because the beer was more pure than the water and they couldn't risk anyone getting ill on the long voyage across the Atlantic. The beer also provided much needed nutrients to help keep up their strength.

By 1770 the American brewing industry was well established, George Washington, Patrick Henry and other patriots argued for a boycott of English beer imports. As a matter of fact, the Boston Tea Party could just have easily been the Boston Beer Party. George Washington, Samuel Adams and Thomas Jefferson all brewed their own beer and promoted the brewing industry throughout the colonies. George Washington operated a small brewery at Mount Vernon and during the Revolutionary War he made sure his troops received a quart of beer each day!

George Washington wasn't the only one who promoted beer in America's early years. Patrick Henry, Samuel Adams and James Madison each had a passion for beer. It is said that Thomas Jefferson wrote the first draft of the Declaration of Independence while drinking a cold draft at the Indian Queen tavern in Philadelphia.

So as you celebrate Independence Day this year, remember America's beverage, beer.

If we can be of assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me or David Rehr, vice president of government affairs at (703) 683-4300.

Regards,

Ronald A. Sarasin President

1100 South Washington Street Alexandria, Virginia 22314-4494 (703) 683-4300 FAX (703) 683-8965
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Copyright 1999, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
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Author:Sarasin, Ronald A.
Publication:Washington Monthly
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 1, 1999
Words:368
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