Hi there, gang.
I am currently enrolled in a history class, and I will be writing a term paper about some element of the Lewis and Clark expeidtion. In reading Stephen Ambrose's "Undaunted Courage", (highly recommended, btw,) and of course being a whisky enthusiast, I cannot help but to notice how often whisky is mentioned in the narrative. I'm thinking of maybe focusing on the role of whisky in both the old west and on the expedition itself, because it was an important part of the daily ration of each of the rough-edged men, and the abuse of it was a frequent cause of trouble among the same. I could also take a look at its impact upon the Indians.
What would be my best source of information for finding out the whos whats wheres and whys of whisky in 1804? Lewis loaded up 120 gallons of the stuff from St. Louis right before they left, and I think there was already a supply aboard. What volumes should I read to get specifics? I will, of course, be scouring the History forum on this board for information.
I know that it was probably not very refined... but what exactly was it that these guys got 4 ounces of with dinner every day?
Any and all help would be much appreciated.