The lollipop was created when cavemen collected honey from beehives and ate it off a stick. The ancient Chinese, Arab, and Egyptian peoples ate honey mixed with fruit and nuts off sticks. In the Middle Ages, nobles ate boiled sugar with a stick. Then in 17th century England, an early version of the modern lollipop emerged as a popular London street food. However, since the machine used to insert sticks into candies hadn’t been invented yet, lollipops in 17th century London were made of soft candy rather than the hard candy we are familiar with today.

The modern lollipop as we know it was developed in the 20th century. There is a lot of debate over who exactly created the treat, but what we do know for sure is that several different people (and factories) in the United States helped shape the modern lollipop, including George Smith of New Haven, Connecticut, in 1908 who named his treats Lolly Pops after a local racehorse; ‘Lolly Pop’ and the name was trademarked in 1931. Also making these treats were the McAviney Candy Company in Connecticut who created a product similar to George Smith’s; the Racine Confectionery Machine Company in Wisconsin, where the machine to automatically place hard candies on the ends of sticks was created; and Samuel Born, who invented the Born Sucker Machine to automatically insert sticks into hard candy. All of these innovations helped to create the lollipop we know and love today.

Over the years other terms apply such as lolly, sucker, and sticky-pop.

A popular song by the Chordettes in 1958 was titled ‘Lollipop’.

Photo: Candy on a stick.

Related Blogs:

Candy Canes

Candy Corn

Childhood Candies of the 1950s

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