Thursday, February 21, 2008

You Can Help!

One of the more frequent requests in the MVHS Archives is for images of national politicians that have made campaign stops in the Valley.

Here's how you can help:
If you attended any of the events hosted by Senators Clinton or Obama, or any other event related to their campaign, and have pictures, please consider donating a set of prints to the archives.
One request:
Prints produced at a photo lab (drug stores, photo shops, and online services) are best for long term preservation. Prints produced on ink-jet or home photo printers are not as stable, and could flake and fade over time.

For more information on donating items to MVHS please don't hesitate to contact the staff!

Please help the Mahoning Valley Historical Society fufill its mission of collecting and preserving your histoy - remember, these are your stories, your experiences, your history!
Image is of Franklin D. Roosevelt making a stop in downtown Youngstown.

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.