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Barbecue History Part 2

Barbecue History Part 2

Making barbecue sandwiches in 1940 Ridgeway, Colorado Courtesy of the Library of Congress

Making barbecue sandwiches in 1940 Ridgeway, Colorado Courtesy of the Library of Congress

A 1940 edition of The Atlanta Constitution (called The Atlanta Journal-Constitution now) says that “originally” barbecuing “meant roasting or broiling a whole animal or a very large part of it all in one piece.” In Historian Eugene Genovese’s words, Africans in the antebellum south “contributed more to the diet of the poorer whites than the poorer whites ever had the chance to contribute to theirs.” In addition, the majority of white elites depended on African Americans to barbecue their meat.  Poor whites in the antebellum South Carolina seldom had access to meat “except they steal hogs which belong to the planters or their negroes,” writes traveler Frederick Law Olmsted who visited South Carolina in the 1850s. 

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