“Toy Surprise Inside” or hand me some of that….

Posted by on March 28, 2008

Cracker Jack!!!

I visited COSI yesterday and came across a stunning exhibit on the snack (candy?) that we’ve all known about, but perhaps have not tried in a long time. That is Cracker Jack!



First seen at the Chicago World’s Columbian Exposition in 1893, Cracker Jack is one of those treats that has stood the test of time!



Basically a mix of popcorn and peanuts, coated by a caramel mixture, it is unique in that it doesn’t stick as you munch it down. So how did they do that? Says Wikipedia:

“…As each batch was mixed in a cement-mixer-like drum, a small quantity of oil was added — a closely-guarded trade secret. Hitherto, the mixture had been difficult to handle as it stuck together in chunks…..” (Wikipedia: Cracker Jack)




Let’s face it, Cracker Jack is good, but what’s even better is what is inside besides the candy. If you will notice my picture above, that should give you a hint if you don’t already know?

Give up?

It’s the prize!!!


Buried inside each box of Cracker Jack is the prize. Down through the history of the product there have been many types of prizes, from metal trinkets to tattoos. From a history standpoint, the gizmos reflect the popular culture of the time.

Other things about Cracker Jack and its association with American culture include baseball and those folks on the outside of the box:

Sailor Jack and Bingo!



Now I’m getting hungry! In any event, take a look at some of the links below if you get a moment. The official site has flash on the first page, just to let you know.

Have a great day, see you tomorrow!


Official Cracker Jack home page

Wikipedia: Cracker Jack

NPR Story: Cracker Jack (media on page)

TIME Archives: Obit (reference to Cracker Jack slogan)


(1) Me, visit to COSI Columbus, March 2008

(2) DN-0000530, Chicago Daily News-Chicago Historical Society. (LOC)

(3) Me, visit to COSI Columbus, March 2008

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