On Apr 14, 2009, at 2:22 PM, AUDITORY automatic digest system wrote:
"A second type of reader is served by the introductory and bibliographical material accompanying each paper. It occurred to me that there are those who would welcome the putting into perspective the occasion which drew forth each paper etc. etc. "
And for those, such as myself, who wonder what on earth 'switchel' is:
Switchel, also switzel, swizzle, ginger-water haymaker's punch or switchy, is a drink made of water mixed with vinegar, and often seasoned with ginger. Honey, sugar, brown sugar,molasses, or maple syrup were sometimes used to sweeten the drink instead of molasses. In the U.S. state of Vermont, oatmeal and lemon juice were sometimes added to the beverage.
Switchel made with water, vinegar, ginger and sugar found great popularity in the hayfields of New York in the 1930s.
Switchel originated in the Caribbean, and had become a popular summer drink in the American Colonies in the late 1600s. By the 1800s, it had become a traditional drink to serve to thirsty farmers at hay harvest time, hence the nicknamehaymaker's punch. Herman Melville wrote in I and My Chimney, "I will give a traveler a cup of switchel, if he want it; but am I bound to supply him with a sweet taste?" In The Long Winter Laura Ingalls Wilder describes a switchel-like beverage that her mother had sent for Laura and her father to drink while haying: "Ma had sent them ginger-water. She had sweetened the cool well-water with sugar, flavored it with vinegar, and put in plenty of ginger to warm their stomachs so they could drink till they were not thirsty. Ginger-water would not make them sick, as plain cold water would when they were so hot."