Foods Under $5 Image Gallery
Foods Under $5 Image Gallery

Foods Under $5 Image Gallery Native Americans believed that a spirit lived in each kernel of popcorn. See more pictures of foods under $5.

High in fiber, low in fat, and a tiny spirit in every kernel -- here are 20 things you didn't know about popcorn.

1. Popcorn's scientific name is zea mays everta, and it is the only type of corn that will pop.

2. People have been enjoying popcorn for thousands of years. In 1948, popped kernels around 5,000 years old were discovered in caves in New Mexico.

3. It is believed that the Wampanoag Native American tribe brought popcorn to the colonists for the first Thanksgiving in Plymouth, Massachusetts.

4. Traditionally, Native American tribes flavored popcorn with dried herbs and spices, possibly even chili. They also made popcorn into soup and beer and made popcorn headdresses and corsages.

5. Some Native American tribes believed that a spirit lived inside each kernel of popcorn. The spirits wouldn't usually bother humans, but if their home was heated, they would jump around, getting angrier and angrier, until eventually they would burst out with a pop.

6. Christopher Columbus allegedly introduced popcorn to the Europeans in the late 15th century.

7. The first commercial popcorn machine was invented by Charles Cretors in Chicago in 1885. The business he founded still manufactures popcorn machines and other specialty equipment.

8. American vendors began selling popcorn at carnivals in the late 19th century. When they began to sell outside movie theaters, theater owners were initially annoyed, fearing that popcorn would distract their patrons from the movies. It took a few years for them to realize that popcorn could be a way to increase revenues, and popcorn has been served in movie theaters since 1912.

On the next page, you'll find the rest of our list of things you didn't know about popcorn.