Tasteful Inventions: Christian K. Nelson: Eskimo Pie

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Christian K. Nelson: Eskimo Pie

On January 24, 1922, the United States Patent Office granted the patent for the frozen novelty, Eskimo Pie. Patent number 1,404,539 was granted to Christian K. Nelson, the inventor of the "I-Scream Bar," (later to be renamed Eskimo Pie:) The patent is available for viewing at google patents. Below you will find a small portion of that patent.

The present invention relates to confectionery and has for its object the production of a commercially practical coated brick or block of ice cream or the like...It is the primary object of this invention to provide a frozen dainty comprising a form retaining block or brick of ice cream or the like, also to provide encasement therefor which facilitates its ready handling...

You can also view the Eskimo Pie Corporation Records at the archives section of the National Museum of American History which contains oodles of information pertaining to the chocolate-covered ice cream treat, and its inventor C. K. Nelson. Here's a taste:

The inspiration for the invention of Eskimo Pie was a boy's indecision in Nelson's confectionery store in 1920. A boy started to buy ice cream, then changed his mind and bought a chocolate bar. Nelson inquired as to why he did not buy both. The boy replied, "Sure I know-I want 'em both, but I only got a nickel." For weeks after the incident, Nelson worked around the clock experimenting with different methods of sticking melted chocolate to frozen ice cream until he found cocoa butter to be the perfect adherent.

Also available for "tasting" are a few Eskimo and Inuit recipes at my other blog where I celebrated Eskimo Pie Day in March.


  • 1. Nebraska Food & Beverage manufacturing history


Wanderdarkling said...

Dear Christian,

Thanks for your mention of the National Museum of American History! I thought that perhaps you might be interested in helping us spread the word about a really cool event that NMAH is launching-- a national Star-Spangled Banner YouTube Singing Contest!

Contestants can submit a video performance of the national anthem to the Star-Spangled Banner group on YouTube. The deadline for submissions is April 13, 2009.

It would be great if you could alert your readers to this exciting contest. Here's a link to the Call for Entries if you'd like to help spread the word:




Night Kitchen Interactive on behalf of the National Museum of American History