The Tom Collins cocktail is a classic American drink made with gin, lemon juice, sugar and carbonated water. It takes its name from the British politician Thomas W. Tomkins. There are a number of legends about how it received its name, but they all agree that it was originally made with Old Tom Gin from the Tomkins distilleries in London.
In 1874 Jerry Thomas mentions the drink in his book “How to Mix Drinks” as being “a particular favorite among our American friends”. In 1909 Robert Hoe published a recipe for the beverage which included applejack as an ingredient instead of gin.