Birthplace of the Tomato

The only argument more intense than whether the tomato is a fruit or vegetable, is its origin. Even though the “fruitable” was consumed back in the days of the Aztecs, Reynoldsburg, Ohio is known as the “Birthplace of the Tomato”. How could this be? Well, it all started with a self-taught horticulturist from Reynoldsburg named Alexander Livingston. Prior to Livingston, tomatoes were considered to be odious and even poisonous crops. Livingston performed experiments on tomatoes to try to perfect the taste and consistency of the fruit. Livingston worked for years on the tomato and in 1870 he produced a batch which met his expectations. He named the crop, the “Paragon Tomato”. It is widely believed to be the first tomato to be consistently produced and commercially viable. By the 1930′s half of the tomatoes were produced from the methods developed by Livingston (RoadMuseum). To celebrate their history, Reynoldsburg hosts an annual tomato festival. Today, Ohio ranks third in the nation in tomato production.

 

Birthplace of the Tomato

 

 

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