History Moment By William “Doc” Halliday

First Ice Cream Factory
Ice creamI scream…you scream…we all scream for Ice Cream! Doesn’t everyone love ice cream? Today the average American eats about 23 quarts of ice cream a year―the world’s highest per capita consumption. When I was a child my father would take our family for a Sunday afternoon drive. The highlight of our drive was a stop at Green Pine Dairy for ice cream. My choice was always pistachio even though vanilla is the top-selling flavor with over 33 percent of the market, and chocolate has an additional 19 percent. Sundays have always recorded more sales of ice cream than any other day.

The beginnings of ice cream can be traced back to the 5th century BC. Ancient Greeks ate snow mixed with honey and fruit in the markets of Athens that long ago. The father of modern medicine, Hippocrates, encouraged his Ancient Greek patients to eat ice “as it livens the life juices and increases the well-being.” The Roman Emperor Nero Claudius Caesar (54-68 A.D.) had ice and snow brought to him from the mountains, which he stored in special rooms under his palace so that he could top it with fruit to enjoy.


France was introduced to frozen desserts in 1553 by the Italian Catherine de Medici when she became the wife of Henry II of France. It wasn’t until 1660 that ice cream was made available to the general public. The Sicilian Procopio introduced a recipe blending milk, cream, butter and eggs at Café Procope which was the first café in Paris. Until 1800, ice cream remained a rare and exotic dessert enjoyed mostly by the elite. Around 1800, insulated ice houses were invented. In the United States, First Lady Dolley Madison served ice cream…

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