1893  According to legend, a unique popcorn, peanuts and molasses confection that was the forerunner to Cracker Jack caramel coated popcorn and peanuts is introduced by F.W. Rueckheim and Brother, at the World's Columbian Exposition, Chicago's first World's Fair.

1896  Louis Rueckheim, F.W.'s brother and partner, discovers the process for keeping the molasses-covered popcorn morsels from sticking together. Louis gives the treat to a salesman who exclaims, "That's crackerjack!" "So it is," says F.W. Rueckheim, who then has the words trademarked.


1908  The song "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" is written by Jack Norworth, who writes the lyrics during a 30-minute subway ride, and Albert Von Tilzer, who composes the music. Cracker Jack brand is immortalized with the third line, "Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jack."

1912  "A Prize in Every Box" is introduced when toys are inserted into every package.

1918  Sailor Jack and his dog, Bingo, first appear on packages.

1955  Cracker Jack begins advertising on television with the appearance of Cracker Jack on CBS-TV's "On Your Account" which is televised to 130 stations nationally.


1964  Columbus, Ohio-based Borden, Inc. purchases the Cracker Jack Company. It becomes the Cracker Jack division of Borden, Inc.

1975  Automated, high-speed, continuous cooking machinery replaces the metal tubs in which Cracker Jack was batch-coated.


1992  Butter Toffee flavor Cracker Jack Popcorn is introduced.

1993  Cracker Jack celebrates its 100th anniversary.

1995  Fat-free Cracker Jack brand is introduced.

1997  Frito Lay purchases Cracker Jack brand from Borden.

1999  A new Cracker Jack television ad runs during the championship pro football game on January 31st. It's the first television advertising for Cracker Jack brand in 15 years.

Frito Lay launches crackerjack.com to inform and entertain fans of Cracker Jack.

Cracker Jack releases Butter Toffee Clusters in November.


2000  In response to strong consumer demand, Cracker Jack launches Butter Toffee Peanuts.

2002  Frito Lay redesigns crackerjack.com to keep up with changing technologies on the Internet.