Your Favorite Ice Cream Treat Is 131 Years Old & From Upstate NY
Did you know that one of your ice cream favorites was originally created here in Upstate New York? But where exactly?
Go back 131 years ago, and the first ice cream sundae was born. It was on April 5th, 1892 over in Ithaca, New York. Platt & Colt's Pharmacy on State Street put out an ad in the Ithaca Daily Journal asking for locals to come try their new "Cherry Sunday". Back then it only cost 10 cents.
How Did It Come About?
Legend has it... Chester Pratt, owner of the Pharmacy, would always be paid a visit by Reverend John M. Scott from the Unitarian Church after services. When they would meet, Pratt would always make Reverend Scott a dish of vanilla ice cream, with syrup and a cherry on top.
The priest said it was so good and should be shared with more people than just himself. Since it was made on a Sunday, for church services, Reverend Scott suggested naming it after the day. The spelling was later changed to "sundae" to avoid offending anyone at the time.
Is The Pharmacy Still There?
The simple answer to this, is no. Platt & Colt's Pharmacy was originally located down on State Street in Ithaca. What's now in it's place is known as the Ithaca Commons, which is the center for food, arts, and other goods in the city.
What's left in the Pharmacy's place is a small engraving on the sidewalk. It is there to commemorate the origin of the ice cream sundae, and serve as a piece of history for the City of Ithaca.
Ithaca isn't the only place to claim themselves as the inventor of the ice cream sundae though. Other cities and towns claiming to be the birthplace include Cleveland; New Orleans; New York City; Plainfield, Illinois; and Two Rivers, Wisconsin. Though Two Rivers also has their own historical marker in place, Ithaca has the earliest printed proof from the 1982 newspaper.
You think that's cool? Check out these other fun facts about Upstate New York you may not have known before.