That's footnote 27 at page 134 of New Sweden in America which is exhibiting something between a quibble and a theme. It's actually in a chapter in that book, "Lenape Maize Sales to the Swedish Colonists: Cultural Stability during the Early Colonial Period" by Marshall Joseph Becker in which there is a lot of very interesting stuff. For example, in 1654, there was an effort to expand trade products with the Lenape, the local nation, from mainly corn to hops as well. Like the colony, it was a flop but who knew the colonial Swedes were gathering hops in the mid-17th century Delaware. There's more. In another document, the same Becker shows that New Sweden's outpost at Tinicum Island had a brewhouse: warning pgf and elsewhere we read that
Swedish women in Delaware made beer not only from pompions (pumpkins) and corn but persimmons and watermelons.
So, with all that evidence that there was plenty of beer and brewing in colonial New Sweden during its existence from 1638 to 1660 why is there a suspicion that the brew kettle was being used for something other than producing beer? I haven't cataloged it but, just like a Shakespeare play presented in Victorian accent, there seems to be a tension over time, in this case a presumption that beer was not as pervasive in northern western culture prior to a certain point in industrialization as we also seem to know it was. It may be that we don't want to know or that we can't take on just how much was drunk by how many. The more I read about these earlier points, however, the more I think I should be surprised to find a sober official, a dry town.