Few things get me as excited as food history. (See: this recipe for a celebratory meat pie from the reign of Henry VI.) Last night Sage Boggs—a comedian and sketch writer for The Tonight Show—regaled the online masses with the amusing origin story of the name “Triscuit,” answering a question most of us never thought to ask, and which soon felt like the most important issue that’s ever been addressed on Twitter:
According to Boggs’ story, years ago he wondered what the Triscuit name actually meant. The latter half obviously invoked “biscuit,” but what about the “Tri” part? Could it have been part of the inventor’s name? Could it refer to the number three, indicating, perhaps, a trio of ingredients, or a triple layer of... something? After Google yielded no results, Boggs went straight to the source, appealing to the Nabisco Corporation for answers:
Boggs might have hit a wall, but he was not about to give up the hunt for his white whale. Once again, he turned to Google, in what I can only imagine was a long, sleepless night spent on his phone, his body unable to give in to a restful state of slumber until his questions were answered. (This is the preferred research style of many food history nerds, myself included.) And—hark!—Boggs believes he might have unlocked the mystery thanks to the discovery of some excellent vintage advertisements:
When Triscuits were invented in 1900, electricity was a relatively newfangled technology, and a very big deal. (For reference, it took til 1925 for only half of America to have electricity in their homes.) Triscuits weren’t just any crackers—they were the crackers of the future! It was right there in the name: ElecTRIcity BiSCUITS. Has the mystery, at long last, been solved? Though Nabisco had previously been vague about the name’s origin, this morning, the company tweeted the following:
We salute you, Sage Boggs, for at last solving one of the greatest mysteries in the crackerverse. May we all appreciate our Triscuits just a little bit more from this day forward.