|JUNE: Tea for Two 602|
encaustic mixed media on birch panel 8x10
1904 - It was at the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis that iced tea was popularized and commercialized (not invented). Due to the hot summer of 1904, people ignored any hot drinks and went in search of cold drinks, including iced tea. Because of this, it changed the way the rest of Americans thought of tea, thus popularizing iced tea.
Most historians mistakenly give credit to Richard Blechynden, India Tea Commissioner and Director of the East Indian Pavilion, as being the creator of ice tea at the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis. In the East Indian Pavilion at the Fair, Blechynden was offering free hot tea to everyone. Because of the intense heat, it was soon realized that the heat prevented the crowd from drinking his hot tea. Blechynden and his team took the brewed India tea, filled several large bottles, and placed them on stands upside down - thus allowing the tea to flow through iced lead pipes. This free iced tea was very much welcomed by the thirsty fair goers. After the fair, Blechynden took his lead pipe apparatus to New York City, offering free iced tea to shoppers at Bloomingdale Brothers Department Store, demonstrating iced tea is a desirable summertime drink.