Thursday, April 10, 2008

April Tea: A Historic Chat

Introduction: I pledged to do a tea party each month this year and blog about it. To see the entire list, go to the label in the right column called "Tea Parties."

Lithograph depicting the Boston Tea Party

April's Tea Party theme is tea and history. I had the delightful opportunity recently to participate in a tea party with a young woman who is studying American history. She's been researching the American revolution in detail including, of course, tea! (She was so sweet to invite her younger brother to join us for this tea! He was quite the tea fan!)

There were 6 of us total. The dishes we used have special significance. The mother of our hostess collected this set for her and the creamer/sugar was a recent gift from her mother-in-law.

I was delighted to share in a lively chat about the Boston Tea Party and other important moments in tea's history, such as the development of afternoon tea. We also discussed the role of tea in the Opium Wars. Truly, one can trace the history of trade and international relations through the history of tea. It never ceases to fascinate me.

I recommend using a tea party as a means to get students involved "hands-on" in their learning experiences. It was a wonderful afternoon for me and I learned as much as I shared. Thank you!


OperationTeaTime said...

Enjoyed reading your article. My comment is actually a request for new or used china donations for a May 16th tea I'm organizing for the wounded soldiers at Brooke Army Medicl Center in San Antonio, TX.
It's an all volunteer event, much enjoyed by the soldiers and their families. Everything is donated.
If you or any of your readers can donate a tea cup and saucer, teapot, creamer or sugar bowl it would be so greatly appreciated.
Mail donations to:
Operation Tea Time
P.O. Box 1355
Bronx, NY 10471
Deadline is May 5th.

Deborah Bonelli
Operation Tea Time

Anonymous said...

Hello Stephanie,

What a fun and educational idea for a tea party! I think students always learn better when they can have an experience that includes all five senses. The tradition of tea is a perfect vehicle for this history lesson and the teatime treats are an added bonus. Yum!

Massillon, Ohio (where I grew up and am opening the Amherst Rose) has an historic connection to tea. The founding family of Massillon were the owners of two of the tea clippers involved in the Boston Tea Party, The Beaver and The Dartmouth. The Rotch family, in particular Francis Rotch, tried to negotiate the release of his ships but of course was not successful. One of my theme teas next year will be a Boston Tea Party. I am planning on having one of our local museum historians put together a program about the Rotch Family history and association with the Boston Tea Party events.
Thanks for reporting on all of your parties. I do enjoy it!

Mary Jane

Steph said...

Hi, Deborah - Thanks for making us aware of this opportunity.

Hi, Mary Jane - What a fascinating connection! Wow! I think that will be a wonderful history lesson, full of tea significance!