How Cristmas Crackers Were Invented
It was the 'crackling' sound a log makes when throwing it onto a fire that gave Tom Smith the inspiration for the 'crackle' or 'pop' sound Crackers are known for. A ' crackle' would add the necessary excitement and spark to his novelty 'bon bon'. Now, it was simply a matter of experimentation to find a compound which gave a satisfactory bang without going too far. The size of the 'bon bon' would also need to increase significantly to accommodate the 'crackling' mechanism but the shape remained the same - and the motto was still included. Eventually, Tom perfected his chemical explosion to create a 'pop' caused by friction when the wrapping was broken. This became the snap and the Cracker as we know it was born.
The trade jumped at Tom Smith's latest novelty and he was snowed under with orders. Very quickly he began to refine his product - he dropped both the sweet and the 'bon bon' name, calling his new crackers 'Cosaques'. He kept the motto and added a small surprise gift. Delighted at his overnight success, Tom Smith decided to explore the export market and took his cracker abroad. At this time, only one design of cracker was being made and to his horror, an Eastern manufacturer seized his idea, copied it, and delivered a consignment of crackers in Britain before Christmas.