Two Inventions Make a Big Splash!


Two Inventions Make a Big Splash!


Iced tea was born in the United States during the long, hot summer of 1904, at the international trade fair in St. Louis. The Association of Assam Tea Producers had a kiosk there, but no one stopped by. Then kiosk manager Richard Blechynden had the idea that he could pour tea over ice cubes. Success! Iced tea remains the type of tea Americans consume most. It is prepared from a ready-to-dissolve powder that includes sugar and lemon, as a bottled drink, or even freezed!.

As for the tea bag, it is attributed to Thomas Sullivan. Sullivan's idea, in 1940, was to distribute tea samples in small silk pouches. As the merchants continued to ask for more, he replaced the silk with more permeable gauze, thus creating the first tea bag, a format now popular with tea drinkers the world over.

The fashion today is for scented teas, and the choice is practically limitless. There are flower-scented teas (jasmine, rose, lotus, orchid), with essences such as bergamot and mint, or spruce or other wood smoke, for example. Citrus teas are popular (lemon, orange), as are fruit teas (strawberry, blackberry, peach, apple, mango, coconut, passion fruit) or vanilla, caramel, chocolate, rum ...

©1996: Centre d'histoire de Montréal
Picture source: La Revue Moderne, août 1956