Gumballs are a type of candy that consists of a small, round ball of chewing gum that is coated in a hard candy shell. The candy has been popular in the United States for over a century and has a rich history.
The exact origin of gumballs is not clear, but it is believed that they were first created in the late 19th century by a man named Thomas Adams. Adams was a businessman who had previously worked as a photographer and inventor. He had been trying to find a way to make a type of chewing gum that was more palatable and less sticky than the gum that was currently available.
In 1871, Adams discovered a way to make a type of chewing gum that was made from chicle, a natural latex that comes from the sapodilla tree. He began selling his new gum, which he called "Chiclets," in small, rectangular pieces.
In the early 20th century, gum manufacturers began producing gum in a variety of shapes and sizes, including small balls. These balls were often sold in vending machines and became known as "gumballs."
Over the years, gumballs have undergone various changes and have been produced in a wide range of flavors and colors. Some popular flavors include fruit, mint, and cinnamon. The candy has also been used in various games and as a decorative accent for cakes and other desserts.
Today, gumballs remain a popular candy and are sold by many different manufacturers. They are often sold in vending machines, in bulk, or in small packages and are enjoyed by people of all ages.
My grandfather has always loved gumballs, and one year for Christmas he was given an old-fashioned gumball machine that took pennies. Every time I visited them the gumball machine was full, and there was a dish of pennies next to it. Grandpa would ask me to get him a few, and I’d rush to the machine and put a penny in, to get a few gumballs for the both of us.
His favorite was always the white ones, which are mint, and mine was yellow, which I’m almost sure are banana. We’d chew them together, and he even taught me how to blow bubbles with them. Grandma and Grandpa live in an RV now, and the gumball machine has long been packed up and stored away. But I can’t go to a grocery store or candy store without seeing these familiar globes and thinking about afternoons with my grandfather, learning how to blow bubbles, and splitting up the flavors between us. ~ Jessie from Michigan
When we were little, we didn't have very much money to spend on candy. It was a special treat to be able to go to the downtown drugstore and an even bigger treat to get a coke or a coke float! But the thing I remember most and will never forget is the huge red metal gumball machine at the entrance to the drugstore. Many times it would "malfunction" and you could get 10 or more pieces of gum to come out with just a penny! It was like hitting the jackpot for us kids! All of the neighborhood kids would see me coming with my pennies I'd saved up and would sit on the wooden floor waiting for those bubblegum balls to come flying out. I seemed to have that special knack! Such fun! Nowadays, I still enjoy putting in a quarter just for memory's sake. It's worth it! Who knows? Someday I may hit the jackpot again! ~Sandi from Virginia