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Corn Liquor

Corn liquor is the most maligned stimulant in America.  It is the purest whisky in the world.  The only difference between bourbon and corn is that Corn Liquorbourbon is the parlor name for corn!

There is a story of a local boy who once made some good corn and buried it in barrels under his barn.  Lightning destroyed the barn.  May years later he decided to rebuild and in digging his foundation he discovered the barrels.  The lightning by some crazy twist has charred the kegs but hadn’t damaged them.  The owner tasted the amber liquor and whooped.  The neighbors tasted it and they all set to whooping!

At its most romantic, the praise of native corn liquor always belonged to the school of the fox who lost his tail pointing to taillessness as perfection.  At its best, aged in home sized kegs, which could be purchased at most of the chain stores, corn liquor was a potable drink full of the mule’s heels.  Gentlemen exchanged private systems for reducing the shock to the palate, which extended all the way from the introduction of dried fruits into the liquor to advanced chemical procedures.  Sometimes they succeeded.  But at their worst, corn liquor and monkey rum (which in North Carolina was the distilled syrup of sorghum cane) were concoctions taken stoically, with retching and running eyes, for the effect beyond the first fusel oil belch.

There was certainly a democracy in drinking then.  Rich and poor drank with the same gasping.  Indeed, when a death by gunshot wound resulted in the relation of the details of a party in one of the area’s richest houses, it came out that, before the gun went off, they had been drinking corn whisky and chasing it down with beer.