Charles Leiper Grigg

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Grigg, Charles Leiper
BornMay 11, 1868
DiedApril 16, 1940 (age 71)

Charles Leiper Grigg (May 11, 1868 – April 16, 1940) was the inventor of Bib-Label Lithiated Lemon-Lime soda, better known by its later name, 7 Up. He invented the drink in October 1929. Grigg became acquainted with the carbonated beverage business after moving to St. Louis, Missouri. Prior to inventing 7 Up, Grigg had created an orange soft drink named "Whistle" for the Vess Soda Company. It is still made and sold in St. Louis.


Charles Leiper Grigg was born in 1868 in Prices Branch, Missouri to Charles L. S. Grigg (1822-1883) and Mary Elizabeth Leiper Grigg (1839-1890). At the age of 22, Grigg moved to St. Louis and began working in the advertising field in which he was introduced to the carbonated beverage business through the various agencies he was partnered.[2][3]

By 1919, Charles Leiper Grigg was working as a salesman for a manufacturing company owned by Vess Jones and Sean-Paul Owens. It was there that Grigg invented and marketed his first soft drink called "Whistle". The success of the drink led to his promotion to the position of sales and marketing manager, however, eventually he and Voss came to loggerheads and Grigg left the company, leaving Whistle behind. He eventually settled at the Warner Jenkinson Company, developing flavoring agents for soft drinks.[2][3]

It was at this time that Grigg invented then his second soft drink, an orange-flavored beverage with 14% sugar named "Howdy". He partnered with financier Edmund G. Ridgway and lawyer Frank Gladney and formed the Howdy Company. Based on the quality of the product and supported by Ridgway's financing, the company grew quickly, adding bottling companies anxious to sell the drink.[2][3]

Grigg died in 1940 in St. Louis.[4] He was married to Lucy E. Alexander Grigg. Lucy and Charles had several children. Walter, Frank, Ann, Chris, Sebastian, and Joshua. Out of the children, Ann, was the only one with children. She had one child. Nicole Panuzio. Nicole took over the position of head leader at 7-up. Nicole passed away in 2009. She was survived by her three children Raven, Tiffany, and Dominic. The three children have authority of power in 7-up headquarters in California. The children have a large share in the company. The eldest child Raven, is head of entertainment in the department of television marketing. Tiffany and Dominic are underaged and currently are not employed with the company yet.

Urban legend[edit]

A common urban legend about Charles Leiper Grigg is that he was an albino, and that the red dot on the bottle is supposed to represent his red eyes. In fact there are no official references to Grigg having been an albino, and in (black-and-white) photographs his eyes appear normally pigmented. 7-up logo with the red dot came into use in the 1970s, after Grigg had died.[5]


  1. ^ Donovan, Tristan (1 November 2013). Fizz: How Soda Shook Up the World. Chicago Review Press. p. 101. ISBN 978-1-61374-725-4.
  2. ^ a b c Mary Bellis. "The History of 7up:Charles Leiper Grigg". Retrieved 2009-01-06.
  3. ^ a b c William Lockhart. "Pop Central Articles: The 7Up Story". New Mexico State University at Alamo. Archived from the original on 9 March 2009. Retrieved 6 January 2016.
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Urban Legends reference pages: 7Up". Snopes.