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Coffee & Tea in the 19th Century
November 14 @ 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Through this program, historic interpreters will explain the aspects of caffeination in the 19th century with yaupon tea and coffee, and how these drinks were sourced and prepared on Roanoke Island. This program is ongoing during open hours and is included with the price of admission.
The only endemic caffeinated plant in the United States that grows prolifically in the harsh Outer Banks environment? You guessed it – yaupon. Popularized by Native Americans, yaupon is a black tea that became popular during the Civil War when ports were blockaded and the transport of English tea was impossible. “One lot of yaupon tea” was listed in Adam Dough Etheridge’s estate sale in 1869, illustrating the continued value and use of the plant, even after the Civil War. This program is hands-on and will explore the steps required to make yaupon tea – starting with collecting and stripping the leaves from the plant itself.
In the Antebellum era, coffee’s popularity was on the rise. On small subsistence farms like the Etheridge farm, coffee was likely purchased as green, unroasted beans that could be roasted as needed and stored green for nearly two years! This program takes a hands-on approach and shows the entire coffee preparation process of the mid-19th century, from roasting and grinding to brewing and tasting!