Drinking in the Eastern Woodlands

Wed, 8 Jun 1994 10:38:04 -0500

beverages was virtually unknown to indigenous peoples of the eastern
woodlands of the U.S. prior to their introduction by white settlers.
Given the abundant evidence for use of pulque, chicha, and other native
drinks in Mesoamerica and South America, I'm skeptical that there were
any native teetotalers--especially where maize was cultivated. I've
always suspected that moonshine (corn liquor) was a distilled version
of a Precolumbian maize beer, a synchretism of native and Scotch-Irish
Is there any archaeological or ethnohistoric evidence to confirm
or deny the assertion that Indians of the northeast didn't drink much
before demon rum came on the scene?

Thanks for your help!

John Hoopes