Today in Food History
• Mincemeat Pie Day
• National Pumpkin Day
• National Mule Appreciation Day (see 1785 below)
[There is also a 'Mule Day' in Columbia, Tennessee each year - a week long celebration that begins on the 1st Monday in April].
• UK: National Honey Week (Oct 24-31, 2016)
[British Beekeepers Association]
On this day in:
1734 Thomas Henry was born (died June 18, 1816). An apothecary in Manchester, England, he was the first to produce artifically carbonated water for sale.
1785 The first jack (male donkey) arrived in the U.S. from Spain. King Charles III of Spain sent George Washington a male donkey as a gift
1825 The 363 mile long Erie Canal was officially opened. Connecting the Great Lakes to the Hudson River at Albany, It provided a water route from the Great Lakes to New York City and the Atlantic Ocean, and began the great canal building era in the U.S. (1825-1840).
1854 C. W. Post (Charles William) was born. He founded the Postum Cereal Co. in 1895 (renamed General Foods Corp. in 1922) to manufacture Postum cereal beverage; 1897 Grape Nuts, 1904 Post Toasties (originally called Elijah's Mana).
1918 Cesar Ritz died in Kussnacht, Switzerland. World renowned hotelier who managed various resort hotels, including the Grand Hotel in Monte Carlo where he met chef Auguste Escoffier. Ritz then managed the Savoy Hotel in London, with Escoffier as his chef. Eventually he opened The Ritz Hotel in Paris in 1898, and was part owner in many other hotels and restaurants, including the Carlton in London. His name became a synonym for luxury.
1979 A record bluefin tuna weighed 1,496 pounds. It was caught in Nova Scotia.
2007 'Chef Tell' (Friedman Paul Erhardt) died of heart failure (born Nov 5, 1943). A European trained chef, he was one of the earliest celebrity TV chefs. He made appearances on Saturday Night Live, numerous talk shows, the PBS show 'In the Kitchen With Chef Tell' and was the inspiration for the Muppet's 'Swedish Chef.' He was also a restaurant owner, cookbook author and culinary educator.