Few brands can claim to have 140 years of staying power. Southern Comfort has been a favorite (or hated favorite) of American drinkers since 1874. But how much do you really know about SoCo? What is it? Bourbon, malt, NyQuil? Whether your liquor cabinet is never complete without a bottle of it or whether you think it tastes like Red Bull mixed with Lysol, there’s no getting around the fact that Southern Comfort is an American original with some deep roots.

We dug through 140 years of SoCo history to find out some of the secrets to the liqueur’s longevity.