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The History of Dr Pepper
Charles Alderton

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By Mary Bellis

In 1885, in Waco, Texas, a young pharmacist called Charles Alderton invented the soft drink "Dr Pepper".

Alderton worked at a place called Morrison's Old Corner Drug Store and carbonated drinks were served at the soda fountain. Alderton invented his own recipes for soft drinks and found one of his drinks was becoming very popular. His customers originally asked for the drink by asking Alderton to shoot them a "Waco".

Morrison, owner of the drug store is credited with naming the drink "Dr Pepper" after a friend of his, Dr. Charles Pepper. Later in the 1950s the period was removed from the "Dr Pepper" name.

As demand grew Alderton and Morrison had trouble manufacturing enough "Dr Pepper" for their customers. Then in stepped, Robert S. Lazenby, Lazenby owned The Circle "A" Ginger Ale Company in Waco and was impressed with "Dr Pepper". Alderton did not want to pursue the business and manufacturing end of soft drinks and agreed that Morrison and Lazenby should take over and become partners.

In 1891, Morrison and Lazenby formed the Artesian Mfg. & Bottling Company, which later became the Dr Pepper Company.

In 1904, the company introduced Dr Pepper to 20 million people attending the 1904, World's Fair Exposition, in St. Louis. That same world's fair introduced hamburger and hot dog buns and  ice cream cones to the public.

The Dr Pepper Company is the oldest major manufacturer of soft drink concentrates and syrups in the United States.

Next page > History of Ginger Ale

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