University of Texas San Antonio

A Guide to the Mexican Spirits Collection, undated.

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Christal, Tom
Title: Mexican Spirits Collection
Creator Abstract: Created in memory of Charles "Cho" Seifert, who once said "I have never met a tequila I didn't like," this collection gives insight into the origins, development, commercialization, use, and historical significance of alcoholic spirits in Mexico.
Content Abstract: Contains photographs and printed ephemera related to the production of Mexican spirits.
Identification: MS 486
Extent: 0.5 linear feet
Language Materials are in Spanish
Repository University of Texas at San Antonio Libraries Special Collections

Historical Note

With Mesoamerican origins and an existence dating at least 2000 years, pulque is one of the most culturally significant spirits in Mexico. Considered by many to be the Aztec "drink of the Gods," pulque was a sacred drink used by many civilizaions of central Mexico as an intoxicant for priests, sedative for victims of ritualistic sacrifice, medicine, and as a celebration for brave and wise individuals after a noteworthy accomplishment. Viewed as a national beverage of Mexico, pulque is seeing a recent resurgence in popularity. Pulque is fresh sap (aquamiel) from species of the agave (maguey) plant that has been fermented. It has a milky and frothy consistency and slightly acidic scent.


Escalante A, López Soto DR, Velázquez Gutiérrez JE, Giles-Gómez M, Bolívar F, López-Munguía A. "Pulque, a Traditional Mexican Alcoholic Fermented Beverage: Historical, Microbiological, and Technical Aspects." Frontiers in Microbiology. (2016)7:1026, accessed May 10, 2017, doi:10.3389/fmicb.2016.01026.

"What is Pulque?" Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal, accessed May 10, 2017,

"What's pulque and why is it important?" Agave Cocina & Tequilas, accessed May 10, 2017,

Scope and Content Note

Contains two photographs and three photo postcards illustrating the production of pulque in Mexico, and one printed color brochure for the refinery Casa Colorado.

Organization of Collection



Access Restrictions

This collection is housed at UTSA's Main Campus and must be accessed via the John Peace Library Special Collections reading room. To request access, please use the Collections Request Form.

Use Restrictions

The researcher assumes full responsibility for observing all copyright, property, and libel laws as they apply.

Index Terms

Pulque industry.
Black-and-white photographs.
Photographic postcards.
Local Subjects
Mexico/Mexican History

Related Material

University of Texas at San Antonio Libraries Special Collections holds the Mexican Cookbook Collection, comprised of more than 1,500 cookbooks from 1789 to present, covering several areas of Mexican food culture and recipes, including spirits and alcoholic drinks.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Mexican Spirits Collection, MS 486, University of Texas at San Antonio Libraries Special Collections.

Acquisition Information

Collection was donated by Tom Christal, in memory of his friend Charles "Cho" Seifert, in March 2017.

Processing Information

Processed by Amber Harmon, Library Assistant II, April 2017.

Detailed Description of the Collection


Box Folder
1 1 Hacienda pulquera photograph, taken by Martinez, undated
2 "Pulquero" photograph, taken by Leo Matiz, undated
3 Photo postcards of pulque workers, undated


Box Folder
1 4 Casa Colorado refineria de alcoholes color brochure, undated