Coffee History: Headlines From the NYTimes’ Archives


Britain Supplies US Army Store- Americans in Britain, 1943. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

From health and nutrition to the consumption championship, here are some coffee-focused highlights from the (dangerously addicting) New York Times‘ digital archives, The Timesmachine:


Scientist Upholds Coffee Drinking

October 24, 1923

We’ve been on this coffee and health kick for a while.



Coffee Used in 92% of Homes

August 30, 1939

People really loved their coffee back then.

Clearly some things never change – especially when it comes to misinformation on coffee and health:

“Despite the fact that it contains no more caffeine than certain widely used soft drinks or chocolate, which enjoy popular favor as health drinks … Coffee is unjustly included in many sweeping dietary bans.”



Coffee Not Harmful, Cornell Tests Find

October 20, 1948

Rats which all their lives ha nothing to drink except coffee — not even water -lived as long and well as animals that never tasted the stimulant.

(In fact, a “goodly proportion” of female rats lived even longer than expected, which interested researchers.)

[Ed. note: We are in no way suggesting to stop drinking water. You are not a rat – or in a questionable medical experiment.]


15 Cups of Coffee: Dispute Over Coffee Championship Claims

February 22, 1925

Can’t endorse; not unimpressed.



Coffee Rationing On Cup-a-Day Basis Ordered On Nov. 29

October 26, 1942

The U.S. government announced that coffee would be rationed as part of the war effort, and civilians would be allowed only about one cup per day (and none for those under 16).

For more, check out The New York Times‘ interactive digital archive, The Timesmachine


Compiled by Kyra Auffermann, NCA

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