Honey History: A Buzz Through Time

Honey Bees

Humans have relied on the honey and wax bees provide for tens of thousands of years, whether to make food, candles or aid in medicinal and cosmetic applications. Here are a few key moments (and fun facts) throughout honey's history—and its importance to mankind.

Adee Honey Icon with Bee

13,000 – 8000 BCE

The earliest record of "honey hunting."

6000 BCE

First recorded rock painting of someone gathering honey.

3100 BCE – 300 BCE

First use of honey for food, medicine and religious rites in Egypt.

1400 AD

Romans utilize honey for medicinal properties as well as water refreshments and honey cakes.


The Spanish import the first European honeybees to South America.


George Wheler, an English travel writer, discovers and publishes the design of Greek hives (one of the first with a moveable frame).


170,000 beehives set up in America, challenging the price of hogs and sheep.

Honey Bee Hive


“The Father of American Beekeeping,” L.L. Langstrom, invents the Collateral Hive— officially commercializing the honey industry.


Winnie the Pooh enjoys his first jar of honey.


Vernon Adee begins beekeeping full-time in Haddam, KS.

Family Owned and Operated Since 1957


Adee Honey Farms opens in Bruce, SD.


Richard Adee works as a founding member of the American Honey Producers’ Association.


Richard Adee becomes the third president of the American Honey Producers’ Association.


Adee Honey Farms first sends their bees to California for the annual almond pollination season.


Kelvin Adee becomes president of the American Honey Producers’ Association.