Joel Owsley Cheek was born in Burkesville, Kentucky back in 1852. I have no other information about him, his early childhood, parents and where in Tennessee he was born. What I can tell you of course is the rest of the story. When he turned 21 he left Kentucky travelling by raft along the Cumberland River where he would up in Nashville, Tennessee.
He found work as grocery distributor. Around 1886, he gave 20 pounds of his product to a hotel in the area, two days later it was gone. The hotel tried substituting his product for another one however, the patrons would have none of it, they wanted his product. When the owner of the hotel made contact with him he quit his job as a grocery distributor and started his own business.
That business is still going strong to this day. While you may not have heard of Joel Owsley Cheek you surely have heard of his product because he named his company after the hotel where he first left the product. Now I’m sure your wondering what that product was, when I tell you the name you’ll know. Suffice it to say it’s “good to the last drop.” That’s right Joel Owsley Cheek was a coffee distributor. It took him two years to perfect his product, Maxwell House Coffee. Until tomorrow keep a smile on your face and a penny in your pocket