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Unveiling a Legacy: The Story of Old Arthur’s BBQ with Eudell Watts IV

In a special episode of our podcast, we had the pleasure of hosting Eudell Watts IV, the descendant of a remarkable culinary heritage that spans over 160 years. Eudell, the great-great-grandson of Arthur Watts, delves into the rich history and enduring legacy of Old Arthur’s BBQ, a company founded on recipes crafted by Arthur, a former slave turned culinary pioneer.

The Origin of Old Arthur’s BBQ

Old Arthur’s BBQ is not just a company; it’s a repository of culinary history that began in the 19th century. Arthur Watts, born into slavery in 1837, started his journey in barbecuing at the tender age of six, managing the cooking fires on the estate where he was enslaved. Over the years, he perfected his sauce recipes, a craft that sustained him through his emancipation and beyond. Upon his freedom, these recipes were his most valued possession, carrying them to Illinois where they eventually laid the foundation for Old Arthur’s BBQ Sauce and Seasonings.

A Taste of Tradition

Our discussion with Eudell provided insights into the unique flavors and products offered by Old Arthur’s. From the classic and tangy original BBQ sauce to the popular Smokestack BBQ Dry Rub, each product is a testament to Arthur’s dedication to perfecting his recipes. These products not only promise a delicious barbecue experience but also a taste of history, as these recipes have been passed down through generations, each adding their own touch while preserving the original essence.

Legacy and Innovation

Eudell shared how Old Arthur’s has managed to maintain the authenticity of their heirloom recipes while embracing modern culinary trends. The company offers a range of sauces and rubs, including their Hot & Spicy BBQ Sauce and various dry rubs tailored for different meats, ensuring that all barbecue enthusiasts find something to suit their palate.

Celebrating a Culinary Heritage

Our conversation with Eudell Watts IV was not just about barbecue. It was a profound look into the ways food can connect us to our past. With every bottle of sauce and packet of rub sold, Old Arthur’s not only shares flavors but also stories of resilience, innovation, and passion.


This episode is a must-listen for anyone interested in the history of barbecue in America and those who appreciate the deep flavors and stories that come with each meal prepared with Old Arthur’s products. Join us as we explore the legacy of one of America’s earliest pitmasters through the words of his descendant and the current steward of his culinary legacy, Eudell Watts IV.


Listen to the full podcast episode here to get a more in-depth understanding of Old Arthur’s BBQ’s enduring impact on American cuisine and culture. To try the amazing Old Arthur’s BBQ products head to https://oldarthurs.com.

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