I recently came across the term “locofoco” (or “loco-foco”), and curious as I tend to be, set out to discover if there was anything historically significant which might be shaped into a Monday-Musing sort of article. My first question was, “what the heck is a Locofoco?”. As it turns out I found myself relating the term to the current political fray.
In the nineteenth century the term was connected to the Democratic Party – a name the Whig Party pinned on their opposition. The term “loco-foco” first made an appearance as a novelty item when John Marck invented a self-lighting cigar. A patent for the “self-igniting”cigar was granted on April 16, 1834, although it was never referred to as “loco-foco” in Marck’s patent application or journal notices.
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