January 25: Nellie Bly’s World Tour

Nellie BlyNellie Bly (real name: Elizabeth Jane Cochrane) was a pioneering journalist, one of the first true investigative journalist and also a total badass. Famously, she went undercover at a mental institution as a patient and exposed the facility’s deplorable conditions.

However, we’re not here to talk about that. Today we’re celebrating another one of her legendary feats, for it was on this day in 1890 that Nellie Bly arrived in Hoboken, New Jersey after a 72 day journey around the world. As you might have guessed, this was an attempt to beat the then theoretical trip proposed in Jules Verne’s Around The World in Eighty Days.

Bly first proposed the idea to her editor at the New York World in 1888 and a year later at 9:40 a.m. on November 14, 1889 she boarded a steam ship from Hoboken and began her journey around the globe. Bly would send updates to the Globe detailing her adventures, including meeting Jules Verne in Amiens, France and visiting a leper colony in China. On day 68, Bly arrived in San Francisco on the White Star liner Oceanic and then took a private train chartered by Globe owner Joseph Pulitzer back to New York. She returned to Hoboken on January 25, 1890, at 3:51 p.m.; 72 days, six hours, 11 minutes and 14 seconds after her departure.

Since Bly had cut eight days off of the fictional record set by Verne’s Phileas Fogg, it’s only appropriate that we drink a Fog Cutter. Created by none other than Trader Vic, the Fog Cutter is a delicious mix of spirits and citrus juice.

Fog Cutter

  • 1 1/2 ounces Light Rum
  • 1/2 ounce Gin
  • 1/2 ounce Brandy
  • 1 ounce orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons orgeat syrup
  • 1 teaspoon Sherry

Shake all ingredients except the sherry with ice in a cocktail shaker and strain into an ice filled Tom Collins glass. Top off with the teaspoon of sherry.

Tomorrow: We rub the stump.

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