Growing Gains, Growing Pains
Isleta Pueblo Crate
Line Drawing of Inglenook Vineyards
Prohibition Ribbon Repeal Ribbon Temperance Fan

U sing forced Indian labor, Spanish missions in the West cultivated grapes to provide wine for Catholic ritual consumption. Immigrant ethnic and religious communities (Italian, German, Swiss, French, Balkan, Jewish, and Catholic) throughout the United States formed the backbone of the burgeoning American wine industry in California and New York in the latter third of the 19th century.

Wood and molded iron hopper

But the American vine-root louse, phylloxera, nearly extinguished Jefferson’s dreams for American wine, by infesting all the imported European vinifera rootstock in the United States. The dreams were further eroded by Prohibition in the 1920's and the failure of American wine drinking to move from ethnic and upper class consumption to a beer and whiskey drinking or temperance practicing middle class. But, after the repeal of Prohibition, the American wine industry nevertheless rose from the ashes. And, after World War II, vineyards with European vinifera grapes grafted onto American phylloxera resistant rootstock--a strategy that had saved European vineyards in the nineteenth century-- sprang up again all across the country.

Doubtless As Good
Jefferson's Dream Growing Gains The Paris Tastings American Viniculture