Dr Pepper is a caramel-colored carbonated soft drink. The drink was first sold in Waco, Texas in 1885 and was introduced nationally in the United States at the 1904 World's Fair. The exact date of Dr Pepper's conception is unknown, but the US Patent Office recognizes December 1, 1885 as first time Dr Pepper was served. The drink is named after a former employer of drugstore owner Wade Morrison, who formulated it. Unlike Coca-Cola and Pepsi, Dr Pepper is not a "cola" drink. Supposedly, Dr Pepper's flavor is derived from a mixture of soda fountain flavors popular when the drink was first devised. Also, contrary to a popular urban legend, Dr Pepper does not and has never contained prune juice.
In the United States, Dr Pepper/Seven Up does not have a network of bottlers and distributors, so it is frequently bottled under contract by independent Coca-Cola or Pepsi bottlers, though in some areas independent distributors exist. In other countries, Cadbury-Schweppes has licensed distribution rights to the Coca-Cola company.
The oldest Dr Pepper bottling plant is in Dublin, Texas. In the 1960s, plant owner Bill Kloster (1918-1999) refused to convert the plant from cane sugar to less expensive corn syrup. Today, the plant is still in operation, and is the only US source for Dr Pepper made with real cane sugar (from Texas-based Imperial Sugar). Dr Pepper of this nature is called Dublin Dr Pepper. Contractual requirements limit the plant's distribution range to a 40-mile radius of Dublin, an area encompassing Stephenville, Tolar, Comanche and Hico.
The period after "Dr" was discarded for stylistic reasons in the 1950s.