Watch a Man Eat a Cracker From 1863, Live to Tell About It

Wash it down with 35-year old coffee. Still live.

June 30, 2016 9:00 am

One man took it upon himself to let the world know what it’s like to take a bite out of history — literally.

The man: Steve1989 from the MREinfo Youtube channel.

The cracker: a piece of hardtack — a mix of flour, water and occasionally salt — from the summer of 1863. Even back in its prime, this snack wasn’t exactly a delicacy: hardtack was a convenience-engineered ration for soldiers, pioneers and explorers.

At first bite Steve, says the cracker tastes just like it smells — of mothballs and old library books. Yum.

Trying to get the authentic experience, he dunks the cracker in water just like the troops used to do with their coffee and tea. Soaking the hardtack barely softens the brick-like texture. And the mothball/old-book flavor gives way to an even less appealing, rubbery one. “I literally feel like I’m biting down on an eraser,” Steve continues.

Then comes the 30-year-old instant coffee: “I think this is the most enjoyable cup of coffee I’ve ever had,” he jokes.

Steve’s leftovers will now head off the Military Ration Museum — yes, real thing.


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