Trivia Tuesday: The Inventor

Gum illustration JPG.jpgWe often think of Henry Flagler as the first millionaire to recognize Palm Beach as paradise. One of the wealthy industrialists who beat him here, however, made what product?

  1. The stop sign
  2. Tutti-Frutti chewing gum
  3. Shredded Wheat breakfast cereal
  4. The zipper

Answer: It was the gum. While all these innovations dated to the late 1800s (the stop sign was conceived in 1890, but not put into use for 25 more years… yikes!), it was Thomas Adams who discovered that Mexican chicle produced a smooth, snappy chewing gum. His company produced the first flavored gums – licorice and fruit – inventions that were almost literally eaten up by the American public. He made a fortune, and spent some of it on Palm Beach real estate.

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