An Ethiopian Legend
The story goes that that Kaldi discovered coffee after he noticed that after eating the berries from a certain tree, his goats became so energetic that they did not want to sleep at night.
The Arabian Peninsula
By the 15th century, coffee was being grown in the Yemeni district of Arabia and by the 16th century it was known in Persia, Egypt, Syria, and Turkey.
Coffee Comes to Europe
European travelers to the Near East brought back stories of an unusual dark black beverage. By the 17th century, coffee had made its way to Europe and was becoming popular across the continent.
The New World
In the mid-1600's, coffee was brought to New Amsterdam, later called New York by the British.Though coffee houses rapidly began to appear, tea continued to be the favored drink in the New World until 1773, when the colonists revolted against a heavy tax on tea imposed by King George III. The revolt, known as the Boston Tea Party, would forever change the American drinking preference to coffee.
Plantations Around the World
The Dutch finally got seedlings in the latter half of the 17th century. Their first attempts to plant them in India failed, but they were successful with their efforts in Batavia, on the island of Java in what is now Indonesia.
Coming to the Americas
In 1714, the Mayor of Amsterdam presented a gift of a young coffee plant to King Louis XIV of France. The King ordered it to be planted in the Royal Botanical Garden in Paris. In 1723, a young naval officer, Gabriel de Clieu obtained a seedling from the King's plant. Despite a challenging voyage — complete with horrendous weather, a saboteur who tried to destroy the seedling, and a pirate attack — he managed to transport it safely to Martinique.