History of the Grilled Cheese Sandwich

H/T Trip Savvy.com.

I learned quite a bit about the grilled cheese sandwich.

The concept of the grilled cheese sandwich is not a recent one. Humans have been combining bread and cheese for centuries. Even the Ancient Romans put together recipes for cheese melted on top of bread. Across America, you’ll find creative takes on a grilled cheese sandwich formally created in the early 1900s.

American Grilled Cheese Sandwich History

The modern American grilled cheese sandwich is a more recent invention. In the early 1900s, a young man named James L. Kraft was pushed out of his partner’s business and stranded in Chicago with only $65 to his name. Kraft bought a mule, purchased cheese wholesale, and then sold it to local grocers. He soon realized that the major drawback for his cheese customers was spoilage; most restaurants and store owners did not have refrigerators so cheese wheels had to be used within a day of cutting.

In 1915, Kraft invented a way to manufacture a blended, pasteurized cheese that he called “processed cheese.” This pasteurized cheese could be transported across the country without spoiling. He patented his invention in 1916 and soon began selling Kraft cheese across the nation. He sold packaged bulk cheese and grated cheese.


Early grilled cheese sandwich recipes were made by mixing the grated cheese with a binder, such as salad dressing, white sauce or mustard, and toasting the sandwich between two slices of buttered bread. These were called “Toasted Cheese Sandwiches.”

During World War I, the United States Army purchased 6 million pounds of Kraft’s cheese. In World War II, Navy cooks prepared countless “American cheese filling sandwiches” for hungry seamen. 


Depression-era families found processed cheese to be a cheap and filling meal. Kraft sold nearly 8 million boxes of its macaroni and cheese during the Depression, under the marketing campaign that you could feed a family of four for 19 cents. School cafeterias purchased cans of tomato soup to go with toasted cheese sandwiches to satisfy the Vitamin C and protein requirements for school lunches, leading to the classic childhood combination.

Grilled Cheese Sandwiches Grow in Popularity

Soon, grilled cheese sandwiches were everywhere. A 1934 Washington Post article explained, “Sunday night is a grilling time… Grilled cheese sandwiches are no new thing. We get them in drug stores for lunch and at tea rooms for supper. But when the housewife begins to grill there is no limit to the combinations she may use and the delicious Sunday night suppers she may serve. Open-face sandwiches of cheese and tomato grilled, offer a combination of flavors sure to please the palate.”


In 1949, Kraft Foods introduced Kraft Singles, individually wrapped slices of processed cheese, and it became even easier for home cooks to make grilled cheese sandwiches. 

In Search of Creative Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Today, grilled cheese is making a resurgence with gourmet versions popping up in restaurants across the country and people exploring international varieties of grilled cheese sandwiches.

In the U.S. cheddar has become the most popular cheese to use in the sandwich. But in Oregon, visitors have discovered grilled cheese heaven. In southern Oregon, Rogue Creamery, famous for blue cheese, puts together such interesting combinations as their house-made mild white cheddar and a mild Rogue blue to create a noteworthy sandwich. They offer recipes for even more creative options, like a Crispy Rosemary TouVelle grilled cheese sandwich.


In Portland, Oregon head for the popular Grilled Cheese Grill food truck complex in the hip Alberta Street area. Inviting you to “come by for a taste of your childhood,” they have over the top creative versions, too. Very popular is the famous “Cheesus,” They replaced the bun with two grilled cheese sandwiches filled with Tillamook cheddar and classic American cheese. The inside of the sandwich contains more traditional condiments and a one-third-pound burger.

Food & Wine Magazine compiled a list of the Best Grilled Cheese in the U.S. and includes such cheesy delights as the Crabby Melt from Grilled Cheese & Co in Catonsville, Maryland. The local chain serves up the regional favorite made with local crab and jack cheese on top of homemade “crabby dip.”


You could easily put together a road trip across the U.S. to taste gourmet grilled cheese offerings, the sandwich born as a simple toasted white bread sandwich with American cheese.

History of the Colt Revolver

H/T Thought Co.

March 5, 1836: “God Created Men and Sam Colt Made Them Equal!” (Old West Adage)

History of the .45 ACP Cartridge

H/T AmmoLand.

A little history lesson on the .45 ACP cartridge.


Background, history, features and load data on the .45 ACP cartridge.

Team Never Quit 45 ACP 155gr Frangible Ammo
Team Never Quit 45 ACP 155gr Frangible Ammo @ Brownells ; http://goo.gl/9Lc6m1

USA -(AmmoLand.com)- In U.S. military circles for over one-hundred years; from the onset of the Civil War all the way to today, there has been a tendency to prefer a large diameter bore, subsonic pistol cartridge if we are required to use a non-expanding bullet in the round.


While the old cap-and-ball 1860 Colt Army and 1873 Single Action Army used a .44” round ball, and a 255gr .454” flat-tipped conical lead bullet, respectively, neither projectile was designed to expand, and what little expansion occurred was because of their soft cast lead construction rather than by design.

The Army Ordnance folks around the beginning of the 20th Century had seen the failures of round-nosed, full-metal jacketed bullets in the British .303 rifles, and our own .30 U.S. Government (aka “.30-40 Krag”) in stopping a determined armed assailant.

As a result of numerous instances of the new .38 service pistols being ineffective the US Army was forced to hastily re-issue mothballed Single Action Amy .45 Colts.
As a result of numerous instances of the new .38 service pistols being ineffective the US Army was forced to hastily re-issue mothballed Single Action Amy .45 Colts. IMG : historicalfirearms.info

They reasoned that since their .38 Long Colt Model 1892 revolvers had shown similarly poor results, and the re-issuance of the .45 SAA (Single Action Arm) into combat had added to the eventual defeat of the Philippine Moros, our military review board sought to adopt another large bore handgun. The British too paralleled this thought process, and as early as the mid-1880s they had already started issuing some of the first .455 Webley revolvers as a result.

The advent of smokeless powder, its clean burning, and the copper jacketed bullet meant that Colonel John Thompson and Major Louis La Garde’s study of the effect of handgun bullets in 1904 suggested, via an observation of momentum transfer (motion of hung sides of beef, human cadavers), as well as some shooting tests on live cattle, that “calibers no less than .45” were the way to go.

. 45 ACP Cartridge

Several cast . 45 ACP cartridge s
Several cast . 45 ACP cartridge
Vintage .45 Caliber Pistol Ball Ammo M1911
Vintage .45 Caliber Pistol Ball Ammo M1911

By the middle of the first decade of the 20th Century, Colt was developing, along with the genius designer of most of their handguns, John Browning, a .45 cal. semi-automatic pistol. While the original development utilized a 200gr bullet at approximately 900 feet per second in 1906, the Ordnance Department subsequently desired a cartridge that approximated the old .45 Colt revolver cartridge in power, while being shorter in length than the substitute standard .45 S&W Schofield round.

Thus, the 230gr RN FMJ bullet at 850 fps nominal speed was created, and it found a home in the concurrently developed Colt Model 1911 pistol, the longest serving pistol of any military force to the best of my knowledge, some 75 years of official issue.

The . 45 ACP cartridge has a very slight taper, some 0.003” from case head rim to case mouth, so it can be considered a straight case for feeding purposes. The cartridge has changed only in the adoption of non-corrosive primers and different powder formulations in the mid-1950s, and it was known as “Cartridge, Ball, M1911, Cal. 45” for its entire military service life.

In the civilian world however, it has remained as popular as ever. Due to the existence of new generation jacketed hollow point bullets, it still retains its terminal ballistic advantages of expansion and consistent penetration compared to smaller bore diameter offerings. A recent detailed study indeed illustrated that the Federal HST 230gr standard pressure rounds offer 16” of penetration and consistent 0.85” of controlled expansion with no bullet fragmentation in an unofficial “FBI heavy clothing test” into simulated ballistic gelatin.

Springfield Armory XDM Threaded Models in .45 ACP and 9mm shown here with a SilencerCo Osprey (top) and SilencerCo Octane (bottom)
The .45 ACP operates at a very low 21,000 copper units of pressure, it has no supersonic crack, and is therefore nearly ideal for use with a suppressor.

One other thing that is not mentioned much is that its stopping power is achieved without superior “sectional density,” high pressure, or high velocity. It operates at a very low 21,000 copper units of pressure, it has no supersonic crack, and is, therefore, nearly ideal for use with a suppressor. The recoil, while “there,” is more a push than a quick snap, while controlled-pairs shooting aimed rapid-fire are pretty easy to do out to ten yards and can usually be within an inch of each other. I’ve done it, and I’m just not that great a shot.

Moreover, the . 45 ACP cartridge has long borne the brunt of technical development as a precision target shooting round as well as being a supremely controllable defense round. In both the original 230gr RN,FMJ format for “hardball matches,” as well as reduced weight 185gr and 200g target matches, it remains one of the most accurate service pistol rounds extant. When a tuned 1911 style pistol is coupled with this ammo, it’s little surprise to me that retired USMC Gunnery Sergeant Brian Zins has triumphed at the National Matches at Camp Perry, Ohio as overall champion a record twelve times from 2002 through 2013. His accomplishment will likely never be equaled. (He’s also a really nice guy whom I met at SHOT show in 2013).

Brian Zins Wins 11th NRA National Pistol Championship
Brian Zins Wins 11th NRA National Pistol Championship

To this day, elite agencies such as LAPD, SWAT, FBI, HRT, and USMC SF still use the 1911 and its revered .45 ACP cartridge. It is an American Classic.

. 45 ACP Cartridge Ammuntion Loading Data

.45 ACP Ammunition Resources: