Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The First Ice Cream Wagon

Bill Dwyre of the Los Angeles Times provides this story on Kelly Pavlik.
If Youngstown is a "cruddy" place, it is also a place of pride for Pavlik.
"The first ice cream wagon was in Youngstown, Ohio," he says. "You can Google it."

That's exactly right Kelly, the first ice cream wagon was developed by Harry Burt; here is the story!

The Significance of Harry Burt and "Good Humor" Bars

“Good Humor Suckers” grew to be one of the great icons of American summers of the urban and suburban mid-twentieth century. From the mid-1920s to the mid-1970s, the white refrigerator truck announced by a ringing bell, the white uniformed driver, the pleading with parents for money to buy an ice cream bar, and the gathering of neighborhood children became important, nostalgic memories for several generations of residents of a large area of the United States. Harry Burt, the Youngstown confectionery who strived to make the most delicious candy and ice cream, created the treat, patented the process of production and the machinery for its making, and created the unusual system for its distribution.

History of the Burt Confectionery & Creation of the "Good Humor" Bar

In downtown Youngstown between 1893 and 1922, Harry B. Burt (1875-1926) worked as a confectioner who produced candy, then added ice cream, soda fountain and grill to his store, expanding his business to include a bakery and restaurant, finally adding twelve refrigerator trucks to distribute Good Humor bars to Mahoning Valley and Youngstown city neighborhoods. All these successes he accomplished during the decades of Youngstown’s greatest social, commercial and industrial expansion.

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