Some of the earliest stories about the first snow cone date back to the 1850s in Baltimore. In those days, wagons would deliver ice blocks to businesses for refrigeration uses. Some people say that children used to follow the ice wagons, asking for ice shavings to eat to cool off during the summer. Their parents then started making flavors to add to the ice. People were beginning to take note of the popularity of snow cones, and several inventors filed patents in the 1890s for electric ice shavers.
Egg Custard was one of the earliest, most popular flavors. For parents in the late 1800s and early 1900s, this flavor was easy to make. The ingredients were only eggs, vanilla, and sugar -- items that most people had readily available. Interested in trying this early snow cone flavor? You don’t have to worry about looking up a recipe for Egg Custard. Just pour on our delicious premium Egg Custard flavored shaved ice syrup, and you’ll instantly be able to enjoy the same snow cone taste as the children did in the streets of Baltimore.
Another early story about the origin of the snow cone is at the State Fair of Texas in 1919. A man named Samuel Bert (known to some as “King Sammie”) set up a stand to sell snow cones. In 1920, he filed a patent for his own ice crushing machine, and he continued to sell his tasty snow cones at the fair for many years afterward.
Another city that loves its snow cones is New Orleans, but there, the refreshing treat is usually called a “snoball.” In 1934, a New Orleans man named Ernest Hansen filed a patent for his electric block-style ice shaving machine. His shop, Hansen’s Sno-Bliz, opened in 1939 and his snoballs cost only two cents each! Ernest’s wife, Mary, created her own flavored syrups. If you’re ever in New Orleans, you can still visit Hansen’s Sno-Bliz on Tchoupitoulas Street.
Lucky for us, in modern society, you can enjoy snow cones, snoballs, shaved ice, and other similar frozen treats in a wide variety of flavors all across the country and the world! Whether you’re at a state fair, walking down a city street on a hot summer day, strolling on the boardwalk, or even in the comfort of your own home, snow cones remain a popular treat, shared across generations.
Ever had a snow cone in Baltimore or at the State Fair of Texas? What about a snoball in New Orleans? What’s your earliest memory of enjoying a snow cone? We’d love to hear about it on our Facebook page!