Sir Hans Sloane - a chocolate pioneer
Hans Sloane visited Jamaica in 1687 and he collected samples of the various flora and fauna on the island. It was during one of these visits he tasted the local drink made with cocoa and water and found it nauseating. He set about trying to make the drink more palatable and eventually come up with the idea of mixing the cocoa with milk and sugar. Soon places like Whites of Greek St, Soho and Nicolas Sanders were serving Sir Hans Sloane's Milk Drinking Chocolate. The drink became more popular when he became doctor to a Queen and 2 Kings and eventually William III built a chocolate kitchen at HAMPTON COURT PALACE. His chocolatier Thomas Tosier would make his cup of hot chocolate every morning. You can visit the kitchens at Hampton Court Palace and hear how they processed the chocolate from the beans into a delicious chocolate drink fit for a king.
Sir Hans Sloane - A Great British Collector
Sir Hans Sloane had always been interested in botany and was a great collector of samples. Many of these plant samples are stored in the Sloane Herbarium in the NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM in London. In fact, Sloane brought to Europe the first sample of Theobroma Cocoa which is still kept on the museum and to this day is used in DNA tests on cocoa
From his time in Jamaica he collected many different items and when he set up home in Bloomsbury, London, he began to buy up other interesting collections. Eventually he bought the houses either side of his to help store his items. He then decided to move to a bigger residence to better store his collections and bought Chelsea, with Chelsea Manor. His collection was so large that he made an agreement with the government that he would give the collection to the state on 3 conditions:Both his daughters would receive a dowry of £10,000 The collection would stay in London Entrance would be free to the public. From this agreement the BRITISH MUSEUM was founded soon after his death to house his collection. Eventually the BRITISH LIBRARY and the NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM were set up with part of the Sloane Collection.
Sir Hans Sloane - A Benefactor
Whist he was doctor to the king he would hold free clinics for the poor every morning in his Bloomsbury house. He also donated part of his Chelsea Estate to the Apothecaries of London on the basis they use medicinal plants form the garden to treat the poor, thus creating the CHELSEA PHYSIC GARDEN. He gave them the land in perpetuity for the annual rent of £5 per year. They still send a £5 cheque to the Cadogan Estate every year. Sloane's daughter married into the Cadogan family and the estate went with the marriage. They erected a statue to Sir Hans Sloane in Duke of York Square near to Sloane Square.