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Fact: Chewing Gum was Invented on SI

statenislandgum.jpgStaten Island may have to take a lot of heat for being, well, Staten Island, but did you know that chewing gum was invented there? (The modern gum, not the Greek mastiche.) The Wrigley Building, built in 1917, is on the island and currently abandoned (aside from some squatters possibly residing there); it may soon become a 92-unit luxury condo. Nathan Kensinger notes on his blog that prior to Wrigley taking residence on the island, modern chewing gum was invented there "with the help of General Santa Ana, the former eleven-time President of Mexico. In 1869, while living in exile on the island, he sold a ton of Mexican chicle to local inventor Thomas Adams. Adams hoped to make rubber tires from the substance. Instead, he created chewing gum. By 1884, he had introduced the world's first flavored stick of gum - Black Jack." Yum?

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