August is the month dedicated to John Montagu’s (the 4th Earl of Sandwich) famed creation, the sandwich.
Lord Sandwich, known during his time as a frequent gambler, often spent hours on end at the gambling table. Legends suggests he wanted something he could eat without having to leave the table, so he was provided with beef slices and cheese in between two pieces of bread. When others copied this order and made it a trend, the sandwich was born.
According to Merriam-Webster, sandwich is defined as two pieces of bread with something (such as meat, peanut butter, etc.) between them, although that definition has been stretched over time as foodmakers have attempted to re-define what can be a sandwich.
For example, the hot dog has been a lightning rod of controversy in the sandwich world. It has been argued that a hot dog would fit the sandwich definition, although that notion has been highly debated.
While National Sandwich Day is celebrated in November for the 4th Earl of Sandwich’s birthday, National Sandwich Month takes place in August. It was an industry/trade proclaimed observance. August is a time when many cooks search for new sandwich ideas for summer festivities and back-to-school menus.
Society has come a long way since the 18th century when the sandwich was first invented, and sandwiches themselves have evolved greatly. Many around the country will celebrate, and some will do so unknowingly, as the average person eats more than three sandwiches per week.