Happy Red, White, and Blue Day from bepress!

It’s that magical time of year again when the temperatures are hot and patriotism is even hotter. The USA may be out of the World Cup, but that won’t stop us from celebrating the ol’ red, white, and blue with all the bang of Julian Green’s goal-scoring kick. The 4th of July is officially upon us, and while we could wax poetic about how this day is all about honoring our history and the founding fathers, let’s not kid ourselves. The best part about Independence Day, as with any holiday, is the food: beer, brats, and—since we’re in Berkeley—bok-choy and black bean burgers. Naturally, the Digital Commons community is bursting with great foodie facts.

Think hot dogs should be a regular rotation in the royal treatment? Apparently Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt did. According to this document from the “Ask Gleaves” series in Grand Valley State University’s repository, when Queen Elizabeth and King George VI visited the White House in 1939—the first time a reigning British monarch had visited the US—they were served a royal picnic that included “Virginia ham, smoked turkey, cranberry jelly, green salad, and—yes—hot dogs.” This 1927 essay from Lehigh University’s Lehigh Review, simply titled “Beer,” expounds on the symbiotic relationship between beer and college life—a relationship that extends, surely, to many Americans on the 4th of July. For the uninitiated, author R. Max Goepp, Jr. writes:

“First of all, what is this beverage? As found in Bethlehem it is a liquid, varying from dark brown to pale yellow, and with a taste that depends on the drinker and the nearness of local elections. It is a fair quencher of thirst and a reliable, although time consuming, means of attaining that state politely known as inebriation…Beer becomes in turn for the student a personage whose acquaintance must be made, then a casual friend, an intimate associate, and finally, a bosom companion.”

Finally, what’s more American than apple pie? This charming 1940 pamphlet from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Agriculture Department, “Apples: Uses and Values,” is a wealth of helpful facts and handy recipes. “For many centuries apples have been used as food—and deservedly so. They are delightful in flavor and appearance and rich in many of the essential food elements,” the pamphlet tells us, and we couldn’t agree more! Did you know, for example, that apples contain “a high content of Vitamin C, which prevents scurvy, bleeding gums, loss of appetite, and fatigue”? All the more reason to dish up that second (or third) slice of pie tomorrow.

From all of us here at bepress, have a happy and healthy holiday weekend!


“Five Hot Dogs” by Wayne Thiebaud in Kenyon College’s repository.