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Jerry Thomas

About The Author

Jeremiah (Jerry) Thomas was an American bartender considered to be the “father of American mixology” because of his pioneering work in popularizing cocktails in the United States. His showmanship established the image of the bartender as a creative professional. He learned his trade in the East, but worked as a bartender in California during the gold rush, St. Louis, Chicago, Charleston, New Orleans, and New York. Thomas even toured Europe, where he displayed his elaborate, flashy techniques of mixology, often juggling bottles, cups, and mixers. Eventually he returned to New York where he opened his most famous bar on Broadway between 21st and 22nd Streets. At one point, he was earning $100 a week, more than the vice president of the United States. When he died of apoplexy in 1885, his death was marked by substantial obituaries across the country. The New York Times noted Thomas was “at one time better known to club men and men about town than any other bartender in this city, and he was very popular among all classes.”

Books by Jerry Thomas