Wednesday, December 2, 2020

History of the Candy Cane By: Julie Lence

eat this, not that 

Today’s red & white stripped candy dates back to 17th century Europe when pulled sugar was popular. Most historians agree the treat came about when a German choirmaster gave his singers sugar sticks to keep them quiet during the Living Creche ceremony. Some suggest he was the one who crooked the top of the stick to resemble the shepherd’s cane. Others believe the crook was added (also in Germany) to hang the sticks on trees alongside fruits and other treats.
The original sugar stick was white and debuted in the United States in 1847 in Wooster, Ohio. German-Swedish immigrant, August Imgard decorated a blue spruce with paper ornaments and the crooked sugar sticks. From there, the candy cane appeared on Christmas cards in the early 1900’s, with the red stripes and peppermint flavor added around the same time.
Bob's Candies, 
Atlanta’s Bob McCormick is credited in the 1920’s as being the first to give candy canes as special treats to his family and friends. The treats were made by hand and labor intensive until the when Gregory Keller (Bob’s brother-in-law) built a machine to mass produce candy canes. Greg’s company, Bob’s Candies, has been producing and distributing candy canes worldwide for over 80 years. 

Gregory Keller;
Religious legend suggests the red and white striped candy cane has a religious meaning. The red stripes represent the blood of Jesus and the white stripes represents the purity of Jesus. It is believed the 3 fine stripes are the Holy Trinity, while the J shape of the cane represents the name Jesus. The hardness of the candy represents the foundation of the church and peppermint flavor is believed to stem from the herb hyssop, which symbolizes the purity of Jesus in the Old Testament.  
Today, over 1 billion candy canes are produced int he United States. They come in different sizes and flavors, but red & white remains the most popular. Personally, I’m not one for the taste of peppermint, but I think they’re pretty and hang them on my tree.      


Patty Fontenot Duplechin said...

Thank you. Everyone should learn the history of candy canes

kathleen Lawless said...

I love learning the history of something we all take for granted this time of year.

Julie Lence said...

Hi Patty and Kathleen: Glad you each enjoyed the Candy Cane! It is always fun to learn something new for me, too. Hugs!

Ria Gomes said...

Loved reading the history of Candy Canes. May I add that the candy cane also can mean to represent the Shepherds rook...with Jesus as the good Shepherd. I never did much care for them but right now I feel like having one. Frez bought a box from the mall here to put in the Christmas hampers she plans to make this Christmas.

Julie Lence said...

Hi Ria: I'm not much of a candy cane person either. Sometimes, I may have a small one. I do have a bunch that I in past years I've on the Christmas tree for decorations. They're still wrapped in plastic wrap and so old they're probably toxic, lol. Have a great day and Thank You for visiting me here.

Patti Sherry-Crews said...

Hi, Julie. Who knew there was so much history and tales to tell in the common candy cane! I don't care much for their flavor either but I do think they're pretty--and pretty old in our house because we also have the same ones from 3 years ago!

Julie Lence said...

Hi Patti. 3 years isn't that long. Mine have to be at least 10 years old. I just keep tossing them in the box for next year. Glad t know I'm not the only one.