[Ads-l] "cup of joe"

Stephen Goranson goranson at DUKE.EDU
Sun Aug 30 16:04:42 UTC 2015

If old black Joe was perculating since the days of Stephen Foster and made one 1911 appearance in a comic strip which may not have been reporting on actual usage, then disappeared for many more years, that's a pretty long perculation. Well-known Josephus could not perculate for fewer years? (I'm not familiar with that rule.) Is the Navy (and USMC) especially, remarkably, peculiarly thick with Stephen Foster fans? If we entertain possibilities like java + mocha--> jamocha-->jamoch-->joe, might we expect at least one transitional appearance of cup of black Joe? 
>From Fulton postcards:
Niagara Falls NY Gazette 1945 Jul-Sep Grayscale - 0620.pdf p. 20 col. 2
"...popular with his shipmates, to whom the navy's traditional "cup of Joe" is an important Item. The coffee-maker has a self ..."
Of course she could be quite mistaken, and I don't know where she got it, but Adelade Douglas Key, granddaughter of Josephus Daniels thought "cup of Joe"--the collocation that makes no appearance in the 1911 joke--came from Josephus.
Maybe; maybe not.

Stephen Goranson

From: American Dialect Society ...on behalf of Jonathan Lighter ...
Sent: Saturday, August 29, 2015 12:07 PM
To: ...
Subject: Re: [ADS-L] "cup of joe"

I doubt that many sailors or marines would even have known of Daniels'
official extra allowance of java (the usual WW1 synonym).  There'd either
be more coffee or there wouldn't.

And "Joe" was capitalized simply because "Joe" was a proper name.

There seems to be no evidence suggesting that the confluence of "Joe" and
Josephus Daniels' alcohol policy is any more than a coincidence - which is
what the weight of the evidence says to me it is.

Cf., perhaps, the former certainty that "O.K." stood for "Old Kinderhook."
At least we know that that pair was simultaneously current.


On Sat, Aug 29, 2015 at 11:28 AM, Stephen Goranson ...

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society ...
> Poster:       Stephen Goranson ...
> Subject:      "cup of joe"
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> 1) Maybe it's a... blend.
> 2) Joe is capitalized in Ben's 1928 cite.
> 3) Someone once characterized much of Navy life to me as often "hurry up
> an=
> d wait"--while drinking coffee.
> 4) Though many have commented on the order by Josephus Daniels limiting
> acc=
> ess in the Navy to alcohol, it may not usually have been observed, in this
> =
> context, that Josephus Daniels also specifically requested from Congress
> in=
>  May, 1917 that those on watch duty be provided with an extra allowance of
> =
> coffee.
> https://books.google.com/books?id=3DsLA3AQAAIAAJ&pg=3DPR111&dq=3Dcoffee+%22=
> josephus+daniels%22&hl=3Den&sa=3DX&ved=3D0CDkQ6AEwBWoVChMIx8qfuLnOxwIVAaoeC=
> h3aFwDy#v=3Donepage&q=3Dcoffee%20%22josephus%20daniels%22&f=3Dfalse
> or
> http://tinyurl.com/ntdebup
> Stephen Goranson
> http://people.duke.edu/~goranson/=

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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