Former U.S. President Calvin Coolidge was born and raised a mere six miles from Bridgewater Corners, and the October Country Inn. A little known fact outside of northern New England is that “Moxie” was Calvin’s favorite soft drink. It was also Boston Red Sox legend Ted William’s favorite soda, as well as the official soft drink for the state of Maine.
Never heard of “Moxie.” This uniquely tasting soft drink was invented in 1876 by Maine native Dr. Augustin Thompson. “Moxie” originated as a patent medicine called “Moxie Nerve Food.”
Dr. Thompson named the drink after his friend, Lieutenant Moxie, who is reputed to have discovered that the properties of an extract from a rare South American plant were especially effective against “paralysis, softening of the brain, nervousness, and insomnia.” Gentian root extractive is a listed “Moxie” ingredient. This may contribute to the drink’s unique taste. After a few years, Dr. Thompson added soda water to the formula and changed the product’s name to “Beverage Moxie Nerve Food.”
You may not have known that “Moxie” was a soft drink, but the word moxie, describing the qualities of courage, daring, and energy–as in “This gal’s got moxie,”–is an offshoot of advertising jingles developed to market the drink.
You might not find “Moxie” in your local grocery, but you can often find it at the October Country Inn, or the nearby Bridgewater Corners Country Store.