To learn more about the history of fries, click here. http://www.belgianfries.com
The French cannot take responsibility for inventing the fry. That honor goes to the Belgians. In Belgium, fries are cherished even more than they are in America. In Belgium, fries are everywhere. The thick slabs of potatoes are freshly fried and served in paper cones and they are offered with a variety of toppings, the most popular being mayonnaisebut the Belgians have also developed a wide variety of specialized fries shops called "frietkots" or "fritures". These range from small stands to sheds, buses and caravans to shacks or quaint chalets.
It is only in the United States that the nomenclature of fried potatoes insinuates a French connection. In England they are called "chips", in France "pommes frites" (which means, literally, "fried apples"), and in Belgium and Holland "patat" (not the word for potato, which is "aardappel"). The French fry has little to do with France other than the fact that its popularity spread to that country as quickly as it did to others. In fact, the French, like most of Europe, eyed the potato with suspicion until the last century or two.†
† Reprinted from an informative site about potatos and french fries. http://www.stim.com/Stim-x/9.2/fries/fries-09.2.html