George Washington, Distiller

  • There is a fascinating What if ... article by Michael Bechloss about George Washington and his distillery at Mount Vernon (The New York Times, 12-Feb-2016). Following his presidency in 1797, Washington found himself in need of money, despite an 8,000 acre plantation and labor by hundreds of enslaved African-Americans. His plantation manager suggested starting a distillery, which in 1799 produced nearly 11,000 gallons and achieved a profit of about $7,500 (about $142,000 today). What might have become one of the great businesses of the early republic — it was already the largest distillery in America — was cut short when Washington died in December 1799.
JDN | 15-Jan-2017

The British red coat (which gave the British soldiers the soubriquet of lobsterback) had been instituted in 1660 and was not to leave the battlefield until 1882. It was the national corporate logo, and arrayed beneath it were subordinate brands — the regiments with their facing colors (the contrast color of the lapel and cuff), connected to the mother brand but differentiated.

Michael Stephenson
Patriot Battles: How the War of Independence Was Fought (2007)