short note: black strap molasses

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Fri May 27 14:41:26 UTC 2011

I wrote:
>The OED entry has quotations from 1785 to 1842.

The 1785 is from Grose's dictionary, and the next is 1821.

My usual suspect for the 18th century (EAN) has 1809:

Tavern Keepers.  [article title]
... but for a sparkling glass, which bears no traces of toddy or
black strap, two pence should be allowed him.

New-Hampshire Patriot [Concord], 1809 May 5, page 4.

There are three more instances before 1821.

Plus use of "Black Strap" as a landmark for ships:  "Saw near Black
Strap a two ox cutter, bottom up ..."

Portland [Maine} Gazette. 1813 Oct 25, page 3; republished several
times.  For those who have forgotten, these articles are satires of
shipping news during the embargo of the War of 1812 -- and have
fooled EAN, which classifies them as "Shipping News", not "News/Opinion".


The American Dialect Society -

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