Whoever came up with the idea of beer battering hunks of fish, freezing them in bags, then selling them in bulk must have been a freaking genius.

In fact, he was. Slade Gorton began commercializing savory fish cakes in the early 20th century, staged aggressive takeovers of prominent Massachusetts fishery rivals, and became fish stick king of the world with the introduction of Gorton’s Fish Sticks in 1959. To this day Gorton’s supplies savory battered patties to leading fast food chains around the world.

Many British people will tell you that Gorton’s should be spelled with a D. Also that the Gorton Fisherman, the emblematic figure displayed in the Gorton’s Fish Sticks logo, is only fish stick king of the world because in other more sensible places the treat is called fish fingers.

As though fish could work a doorknob. Thanks again, British people.

Image by Superbass – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,