August 6:August 6, 2012
August 6: National Root Beer Float Day
Story has it that in 1893, Frank Wisner, owner of the Cripple Creek Cow Mountain Gold Mining company in Colorado, had been producing a line of soda waters for the citizens of the then-booming Cripple Creek gold mining district. He wanted to create a special drink that would appeal to the children as well.
The idea came to him while starring out at his property on Cow Mountain on a moonlit night. The full moon’s glow on the snow-capped Cow Mountain reminded him of a dollop of vanilla ice cream floating on top of this blackened Cow Mountain.
The next day, he began adding a big scoop of vanilla ice cream to one of the soda waters that he produced that the children seemed to like best – Myers Avenue Red Root Beer. The drink was an instant hit!
Originally named “Black Cow Mountain”, the local children shortened this to “black cow”.
As soda was marketed as a miracle cure, it was often considered a substance that required oversight and control much like alcohol and could not be served or purchased on Sundays in many conservative areas. Soda fountains had to figure out a way to turn a profit on that day. The solution was to serve ice cream on these days, coining the term Ice Cream Sundaes.