A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from August 04, 2012
“Good to the last drop”

"Good to the last drop” means that a drink is so very good that no drop should be wasted. Maxwell House Coffee has trademarked the slogan, with 1910 as a date of first use.

President Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919) is said to have coined the famous slogan on an October 21, 1907 visit to Andrew Jackson’s estate, The Hermitage, near Nashville, Tennessee. Roosevelt was served Maxwell House coffee and declared, “That’s good to the last drop!” A contemporary newspaper citation is lacking, but the Theodore Roosevelt Association claims that a future president of the Tennessee state historical society witnessed the event.

The similar slogan, “The Last Drop Is As Good As The First,” was used by Renne’s magic oil (1870), Hires root beer (1892) and Baker’s hot cocoa (1910).

The “Good To The Last Drop” slogan had been used prior to 1907 by mineral spring waters (1865), root beer (1900), Challenge Blend coffee (1903), beer (1904) and Woman’s Club coffee (1905).

A jocular use of the saying is “Skydiving—Good to the last drop.”


Wikipedia: Maxwell House
Maxwell House is a brand of coffee manufactured by a like-named division of Kraft Foods. Introduced in 1892, it is named in honor of the Maxwell House Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. For many years until the late 1980s it was the largest-selling coffee in the U.S. and is currently (ca. 2007) second behind Folgers, which is manufactured by The J.M. Smucker Co. The company recently unveiled a new slogan, “Good Just Got Great,” visible on their website. However, it is best known for its longtime slogan, “Good to the last drop,” and is still running ads featuring the line.

“Good to the last drop”
In 1917, Cheek-Neal began using a “Good to the Last Drop” slogan to advertise their Maxwell House Coffee. For several years, the ads made no mention of Theodore Roosevelt as the phrase’s originator. By the 1930s, however, the company was running advertisements that claimed that the former President had taken a sip of Maxwell House Coffee on a visit to Andrew Jackson’s estate, The Hermitage, near Nashville on October 21, 1907 and that when served coffee he had proclaimed it to be “Good to the Last Drop.” During this time, Coca-Cola also used the slogan “Good to the last drop”. In modern times, Maxwell House has distanced itself from its own original claim stating that the slogan was actually written by Clifford Spiller, former president of General Foods Corporation, and did not come from a Roosevelt remark overheard by Cheek-Neal. The phrase remains a registered trademark for the product and appears on its logo. While the veracity of the Roosevelt relation to the phrase has never been historically established in the press of local papers that covered Roosevelt’s October 21 visit and one of his coffee drinking episodes, without doubt, the Maxwell House Company, itself, for many years, claimed in its own advertising that the Roosevelt story was true. In 2009, Maxwell House ran a commercial with Roosevelt repriser, Joe Wiegand telling the “Last Drop” story. The Theodore Roosevelt Association, an organization dedicated to preserving Roosevelt’s history and heritage, has paper evidence backing up the story.

Theodore Roosevelt Association
Maxwell House Coffee - “Good to the last drop!”
TR drank coffee at the Hermitage, the home of Andrew Jackson in Nashville, Tennessee, and said it “was good to the last drop.” The coffee served to him was from the Maxwell House (hotel) in Nashville - a regional brand of coffee, marketed by the Cheek family.

The Cheek family sold the brand to General Foods in New York, which in the 1920s made wide use of the slogan. Maxwell House became a national brand name and product in the 1920s. The Hermitage origin was attested to by a college student who witnessed it, and who went on to become president of the Tennessee state historical society.

Google Books
Schultz and Warker’s Mineral Spring Waters:
Their chemical composition, physiological action and therapeutical use

By Carl H. Schultz
New York, NY: Baker & Godwin, Printers
1865
Pg. 30:
They flow in sparkling purity at a gentle touch, and they need not be emptied for fear that the remaining portion may get stale, as the waters preserve their effervescence for months, and remain good to the last drop.

23 June 1870, Pittsfield (MA) Sun, pg. 3, col. 1 ad:
RENNE’S MAGIC OIL does not lose its virtues by age, or exposure, as most other articles do. The last drop is as good as the first. It is a real “stand by,” and every family needs it in the house. Call for it where you usually trade.
Respectfully,
WM. RENNE.

Google News Archive
15 April 1892, Baltimore (MD) American, pg. 6, col. 5 ad:
The Last Drop
Is as good as the first. No dregs. All pure and wholesome. The most popular drink ofthe day.
Hires’ Root Beer.
A perfect thirst quencher.

21 June 1900, Boston (MA) Herald, pg. 9, col. 1 ad:
Good
To the Last
Drop.

It tastes good all the way down, and soothes and satisfies the thirsty spot. Delicious because pure. It is made from the choicest roots and herbs. Buy our extract and make up at hom
WILLIAMS’ ROOT BEER.
WILLIAMS & CARLETON CO. Hartford, Ct.

11 May 1903, Illinois State Journal (Springfield, IL), pg. 5, col. 5:
Good To the Last Drop.
A delicious cup of coffee is rare enough (of course there are people who don’t know how to make a good cup of coffee) but if made right you’ll find Challenge Blend coffee good to the last drop. Monday this coffee will be sold at five lbs. for $1.00. Connelly & Co.

7 July 1904, The Patriot (Harrisburg, PA), pg. 5, col. 5 ad:
It’s good to the last drop.
(Elfenweiss Beer—ed.)

10 October 1905, Riverside (CA) Daily Press, pg. 5, col. 5 ad:
Woman’s Club Coffee
The Steel Cut Coffee is good to the last drop.

23 August 1908, San Antonio (TX) Daily Record, pg. 11, col. 4 ad:
ALAMO
BOTTLED BEER
A product that has few equals and no superior. To drink it is to enjoy it. Good to the last drop.
Brewed and Bottled by
Lone Star Brewing Co.
San Antonio, Texas

Confectionery Trade-Marks
compiled by Mida’s Trade-Mark Bureau, Chicago
Chicago, IL: The Criterion Publishing Co.
1910
Pg. 55:
*Last Drop Is as Good as the First, The...Broma cocoa prep....Walter Baker & Co., Ltd....Boston, Mass.

20 February 1914, Illinois State Journal (Springfield, IL), pg. 6, col. 5 ad:
The last drop is as good as the first, and the first has a flavor that satisfied every expectation. Order a case today.
Reisch Brewing Company
Springfield, Illinois

12 March 1915, Fort Worth (TX) Star-Telegram, pg. 16, col. 2 ad:
MAXWELL HOUSE COFFEE
GOOD TO THE LAST DROP

Google News Archive
25 September 1918, The Evening Herald (Rock Hill, SC), pg. 3, col. 1 ad:
GOOD TO THE LAST DROP
MAXWELL HOUSE COFFEE
ASK YOUR GROCER

21 November 1923, The Morning Oregonian (Portland, OR), pg. 14, col. 4 ad:
“The last drop is as good as the first.”
The delicious fragrance of
Baker’s Breakfast Cocoa

11 January 1936, The Register (Sandusky, OH), pg. 7, col. 6 ad:
Faith in Good Advertising—
Faith in Good Coffee—
Built the fortune of Joel O. Cheek, beloved summer resident of Sandusky who died Dec. 14th at the ripe age of 83.
(...)
“Editor and Publisher” in its Dec. 21 issue, tells the story:
(...)
Eight years later when President Theodore Roosevelt was entertained at the Hermitage home of Andrew Jackson, he was served Maxwell House coffee and gave Mr. Cheek his famous slogan—“Good to the Last Drop.” President Roosevelt is quoted as saying after draining a cup of the fragrant brew, “That’s good to the last drop.”

(Trademark)
Word Mark GOOD TO THE LAST,DROP
Goods and Services IC 030. US 046. G & S: COFFEE AND TEA. FIRST USE: 19100000. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19100000
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Serial Number 72037730
Filing Date September 24, 1957
Current Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Registration Number 0676419
Registration Date March 31, 1959
Owner (REGISTRANT) GENERAL FOODS CORPORATION CORPORATION DELAWARE 250 NORTH ST. WHITE PLAINS NEW YORK
(LAST LISTED OWNER) KRAFT FOODS GLOBAL BRANDS LLC LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY DELAWARE THREE LAKES DRIVE NF 584 NORTHFIELD ILLINOIS 60093
Assignment Recorded ASSIGNMENT RECORDED
Attorney of Record Mary A. Carragher
Prior Registrations 0212831
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Register PRINCIPAL-2(F)
Affidavit Text SECT 15. SECTION 8(10-YR) 20090411.
Renewal 3RD RENEWAL 20090411
Live/Dead Indicator LIVE

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityFood/Drink • Saturday, August 04, 2012 • Permalink