Where did the term "cup of joe" come from?

It has recently come to my attention that the answer to this question is a bit up in the air so I will be reporting reasonable possibilities that I pick up. Some or all may be urban legend but until I have a sure way to know I will use this system.

1. The U.S. Navy used to serve alcoholic beverages on board ships. However, when Admiral Josephus "Joe" Daniels became Chief of Naval Operations, he outlawed alcohol onboard ships, except for very special occasions. Coffee then became the beverage of choice, hence the term "Cup of Joe."

2. "Joe" is 19th Cent. American slang for coffee.


Poor Chibi

Poor Chibi

Tomba 2

It came from a popular morning ritual called "Breakfast Tomba".

Simple Cappucino

A "Cappucino" is an Italian type of coffee with a good deal of milk foam on it. "Cup o' Joe" to me sounds just like a mispronounciation or word play on "cappucino", making "Cup o' Joe". Mystery solved.

In the mid 19th Century, this

In the mid 19th Century, this term appeared in Mark Twain's writing about his experiences mining in the Nevada Territory.
While working on the Virginia City Enterprise, Twain had met a ranch family who befriended him and he became very close to the men in the family. The father, a hard working rancher had three sons who often would want to cut loose after a hard week of chores.
The father, hoping to prevent his sons from getting into too much trouble when they went into town, decided his boys wouldn't listen to his words of warning. He made them rise at dawn on Saturday and work a full day doing the most difficult chores. The sons were usually too worn out to even consider going into town by sun down. His youngest son, decided to out wit his father. Little Joe Cartwright drank alot of coffee on the ranch, the Ponderosa all day Saturday to keep him awake when he went into town to romance the local girls. Twain reported this in The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County in a page that is often left out. He describes how "Little Joe" even fed the frogs coffee to help them jump higher.
This became the origin of "A CUP OF JOE".

The Ponderosa and Little Joe

The Ponderosa and Little Joe are a fictional location and character from the TV show Bonanza from the 1960 's so cannot be a valid 19th century origin for the term CUP OF JOE

Which do you think is more

Which do you think is more likely? A 19th-century story by Mark Twain referencing a TV show from 1960, or the very same show instead referencing a 19th-century story by Mark Twain?

term *cup of joe*

I don't know the name of the book that I read years ago but the term was explained by saying that the
plantation owner asked for a cup of coffee 'the same color as old black joe'. In which case, the resurgence of the term needs to be rethought.

cup of joe????

The name could have been a modification of java or jamoke, which were other names for coffee. It could also have been influenced by expressions at that time, such as "an ordinary Joe."

American slang most definitely : I agree.

Very interesting

It is always interesting to know where words or expressions come from, especially when it's about a cup of coffee! I've been using it for as long as i can remember without even thinking about where it might come from. I'll now have a nice though about that admiral when i the expression ;)

Leaning towards the Navy

I could be wrong, but as many of our expressions come from a nautical past, and as coffee was n imported commodity. The logic of the term originating on a ship seems the most likely, but not certainly, the best choice.

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