American and European trading vessels in the Pearl River at Canton in southern China.

The First U.S.-China Trade Deal

The Treaty of Wanghia formalized the burgeoning ties between the two countries, opening the door to new commercial and cultural exchanges.
Two waitresses at Kate Cranston's Willow Tea Room

The Top-Secret Feminist History of Tea Rooms

Nearly all American tea rooms were owned by women. They often opened up rooms in their homes or set up tables in their gardens.
English tea time

The Extremely Un-British Origins of Tea

Tea is bound up in the nation's history of colonial expansion. British tea drinkers preferred Chinese tea at first, and had to be convinced on patriotic grounds to drink tea from India.
Punch bowl

Punch vs. Tea in the 18th Century

In the 18th century, whether a person drank punch or tea revealed a lot about gender, stereotypes, sociability, and domesticity.