Reviving the Historical Coffee House - 1919

Old Time Coffee House at Cincinnati Centennial Celebration

Old Time Coffee House at Cincinnati Centennial Celebration

Out at the heart of the big American Mid-West, not so long since, lovers of the quaint, the unique, the picturesque and, above all, the historically unusual, were treated to the remarkable opportunities of patronizing a road-side city coffee-house of the long, long ago.

Cincinnati, that. is to say, celebrated the hundredth anniversary of its founding by a great masque and outdoor revel at the municipal zoo.

The sports, as might be expected, took the form of those in vogue with the city folk, a century ago, and, enacted by society dames of the city's best families, the players were costumed largely in garments which their own ancestors had actually worn for high state, three or more generations before.

Even such grandly garbed dames and gentlemen will grow thirsty; and, so, what more appropriate than a reproduction of the coffee-house most frequented a hundred years before by the city's swells? In a quiet nook, among the trees and beside a leading highway through the zoo,

therefore, there was erected an exact reproduction of the Menessier Coffee-House of the olden days. There was, basically, the log-cabin of familiar build, with the roof extended to overhang the front; and in the shadows cast by this and a bit away, among the trees, too, the tables and chairs at which coffee was served.

Young women, attired as were the coffee-housemaids of 1820, took the orders and served the coffee and old-time cakes that went with it; and no place did a better business, nor was better advertised by every patron, than this unique revival of the old-style coffee-house among the byways of the zoo.

Felix J. Koch, "Reviving the Coffee House of Long, Long, Ago." in Simmons’ Spice Mill, August 1919, p. 1143.

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