Do You Know George Crum? | 2nd Annual Digital Black History Month Education Campaign (Day IX)

We are pleased to share day IX of 540’s 2nd Annual Digital Black History Month Education Campaign

George Crum | Chef & Inventor

Who: George (Speck) Crum
Date of Birth: July 15, 1824- July 22, 1914
Place of Birth: Saratoga Springs, NY

  • Renowned chef
  • Inventor of the Potato Chip
  • Started Saratoga Chip Company

The son of an African-American father and a Native American mother, Crum was a renowned chef who worked at Moon’s Lake House in Saratoga Springs, New York during the mid-1800s. According to culinary legend Crum was working as the chef in the summer of 1853 when he incidentally invented the chip. It all began when a patron who ordered a plate of French-fried potatoes sent them back to Crum’s kitchen because he felt they were too thick and soft.To teach the picky patron a lesson, Crum sliced a new batch of potatoes as thin as he possibly could, and then fried them until they were hard and crunchy. Finally, to top them off, he added a generous heaping of salt. To Crum’s surprise, the dish ended up being a hit with the patron and a new snack was born! Years later, Crum opened his own restaurant in Malta, NY  that had a basket of potato chips on every table. A white salesman and entrepreneur named Herman Lay began traveling throughout the south and introducing potato chips to different communities throughout the country essentially erasing Crum’s legacy from the history books

“George Crum a renowned chef, invented the potato chip”

About the Campaign

Every day throughout the month of February 540Blog will devote space to sharing Little Known Facts About Black Americans Throughout History. For us every month is Black History Month but we recognize and support the continuous need to take time and space to put a special spotlight on the accomplishments of Black and brown Americans from all ethnicities that have literally changed the course of history and yet have legacies that are not know by the masses.


  1. Thoughtco
  2. Fenomlife
  3. Black-Inventor

Published by Calvin Eaton

(he/his/him) Calvin Eaton is a disabled community educator, content creator, and social entrepreneur, whose area of expertise includes antiracism, equity, justice, instructional design, and program development. In 2016 Mr. Eaton founded 540WMain, Inc. a non-profit online and community-based organization for accessible education and events that promote justice for all.

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