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History of 28th June- Tomato in your plate

History of 28th June- Tomato in your plate

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28th June

This article delves into the history of 28th June and highlights the significant event of Colonel Robert Gibbon Johnson challenging the belief that tomatoes were poisonous in the year 1820. It explores the prevailing misconceptions about tomatoes, Johnson’s bold public display, and the subsequent impact on the acceptance of tomatoes.

As I read the pages from the history of 28th June, I see that it was this day when three companies merged to form the Mercedes-Benz group in the year 1926. I also see that this was the day when fighters of the First Crusade defeated the Kerbogha of Mosul. Furthermore, today is also the day when Ottomans defeated the Serbian army in the bloody Battle of Kosovo, opening the way for the Ottoman conquest of Southeastern Europe in the year 1389. Many such events occurred on this day, however, I have chosen the event which I felt the most interesting from the history of 28th June.

The tomato proved to be a non-poisonous vegetable.

The cook in our house is extremely fond of tomatoes. She uses tomatoes in almost everything she cooks. I will not be surprised to find a piece of the red vegetable in steamed rice one day. But tomato was once considered to be a poisonous vegetable until this day in the year 1820 when Colonel Robert Gibbon Johnson proved it otherwise. Let me share the story with you.

During the 18th and early 19th centuries, many Europeans regarded tomatoes with suspicion. These fruits, belonging to the nightshade family, bore a resemblance to other poisonous plants within the same botanical group. The misconception that tomatoes were poisonous took root and persisted for quite some time. As a result, tomatoes were avoided as a food source.

However, in 1820, Colonel Robert Gibbon Johnson, a respected horticulturist from Salem, New Jersey, sought to challenge the prevailing belief about tomatoes. He aimed to demonstrate that tomatoes were not only safe to eat but also enjoyable. To achieve this, he planned a bold and dramatic public display.

On June 28, Colonel Johnson gathered a crowd in front of the Salem County Courthouse. He held a basket filled with bright, ripe tomatoes and proceeded to consume them, undeterred by the apprehension of onlookers. As people watched in awe, he proved that the tomato was, indeed, a non-poisonous vegetable.

This courageous act had a profound impact on the public perception of tomatoes. It helped dispel the myths surrounding their toxicity, and gradually, tomatoes began to gain acceptance as a legitimate food source. Over time, they found their way into various culinary traditions around the world, becoming a staple ingredient in numerous dishes.

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With this, I come to the end of today’s story.


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