Welsh 'Jack the lad' did not found Daniel's whisky dynasty - brand

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Welsh 'Jack the lad' did not found Daniel's whisky dynasty - brand
Jack Daniel's has rejected claims made by a Welshman that his distant relative may have founded the drinks dynasty when he emigrated to the States in the nineteenth century.

The Tennessee-based brand, owned by Brown-Forman, was reacting to a story widespread in the English press last week, where businessman Mark Evans announced he believed he had found the original recipe for the drink.

This was contained in a book of herbal remedies written in 1853 by his great-great-grandmother, with Evans stating that one of his relatives, John 'Jack the Lad' Daniels, emigrated to the US in around 1852.

He then travelled to Lynchburg, Tennessee, where the Jack Daniel Distillery later opened; it was registered with the US government in 1866, making it the nation's oldest registered distillery.

But Jack Daniel's master distiller, Jeff Arnett, said: "It's a good story, but one based on fancy rather than fact - as the dates don't match historical records."

Arnett said the relevant people and dates didn't match up, given that the real Jack Daniel's family was living in America for two generations before 1853 - the date of emigration for Evans' relative.

"His [Evans'] John 'Jack the Lad' Daniels is not our Jasper Newton 'Jack' Daniel. We also know that Jack Daniel learned to make whiskey from a local Lutheran minister here in Lynchburg and not a herbal remedies book," ​Arnett added.

As a brand, Jack Daniel's had always benefited from chatter surrounding it, especially since to this day it was still made in a dry county, Arnett said.

"And so, through the years, it's drawn all kinds of legend and lore to it. Mr Evans' story falls into the category of lore."

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