14 April 2010
It's fairly common knowledge that cola soft drinks are derived from the cola nut used for flavoring.
Coca-Cola is still the best known of all colas worldwide. The prototype Coca-Cola recipe was formulated at the Eagle Drug and Chemical Company, a drugstore in Columbus, Georgia by John Pemberton.
This original formulation was a "coca wine" and was marketed as Pemberton's French Wine Cocoa. In 1886, when Atlanta and Fulton County passed prohibition legislation, Pemberton responded by developing Coca-Cola, essentially a non-alcoholic version of French Wine Cola.
As with many modern day beverages, it was earlier sold as a patent medicine at soda fountains (The belief at the time was that carbonated water was good for the health.) with claims that it cured including morphine addiction, dyspepsia, neurasthenia, headache, and impotence.
Pepsi-Cola was another cola drink sold as a cure for dysPEPSia, which is a fancy name for indigestion. dys = poor, and PEPSIa = digestion in Latin. The drink was first made in the 1890s by pharmacist Caleb Bradham in New Bern, North Carolina.
The name most likely comes from the digestive enzyme pepsin and the kola nuts used in the recipe. In 1903, Bradham sold 7,968 gallons of syrup. The next year, Pepsi was sold in six-ounce bottles, and sales increased to 19,848 gallons.
DR PEPPER is a drink that was created in the 1880s by Charles Alderton of Waco, Texas and first served around 1885, and nationally marketed in the United States in 1904.
The inventor mixed together 23 soda fountain ingredients and named his creation after his first employer and promoted it as medicinal as well as good tasting.
There are several theories about the origins of the soft drink's name. One conjecture is that the "pep" refers to pepsin. In 2009, an old ledger book filled with formulas and recipes was discovered at antiques store in Texas and a recipe in the book was titled "D Peppers Pepsin Bitters."
Dr Pepper was marketed as a brain tonic and energizing pick-me-up, so another theory holds that it was named for the pep it supposedly gave to users.
Others believe the drink was named after some real Dr. Pepper.
The period after "Dr" was discarded for stylistic and legibility reasons in the 1950s. Dr Pepper's logo was redesigned and the text in this new logo was slanted. The period made "Dr." look like "Di:". After some debate, the period was removed for good as it might also help remove any medical connotation with the product.
For God, Country, and Coca-Cola: The Definitive History