Back to all articles

The History of Bagels

The bagel was introduced to the United States by Jewish immigrants from Poland in the late 19th century. It was first sold as a street food in New York’s Lower East Side and was usually stacked on poles or hung from strings – that’s why bagels have a hole! By 1915, there were so many bagel makers in New York City that a bagel makers trade union was formed. Cream cheese was invented in the 1930s by Lender’s Bagels, and in the 1950s, housewives began marrying the bagel with cream cheese and lox on the suggestion of Family Circle Magazine. Over time, bagels paired with lox and cream cheese became a quintessential food in America that’s forever linked with the city of New York and its Jewish roots.

Share this article

card showing the history of rocking chairs

Your go-to guide for weird history facts

Subscribe to the FREE daily email that makes learning about history fun.