Get the Scoop on Reading!


We All Scream for Ice Cream!
The Scoop on America's
Favorite Dessert
By Lee Wardlaw
Illustrated by Sandra Forrest

ice cream bar

Non-fiction/Ages 8 and up
A Troll Book Club Selection

Now available as an e-book from Amazon!

July is National Ice Cream Month! 
 How will YOU celebrate?

     Four thousand years ago, Chinese noblemen made it from milk and spiced rice. 

     In 17th century England, Charles I decreed that it be served only at the royal table – and threatened his chef with a beheading if the secret recipe were revealed. 

     Dolley Madison, wife of America’s fourth president, James, “set astir an Air of Expectancy among her Guests” when she served “a large, shining [pink] dome” of it at her husband’s second inaugural ball.

     What is it?  (As if you don’t know!)

     Ice cream!


     For centuries, ice cream was known as the “food of the gods” and a “treat for the elite.”  Kids and common folk finally got their licks in during the late 1800’s.  That’s when a number of amazing scientific and technical revolutions took place in America, making ice cream inexpensive and plentiful for all.  “Shoes the child must do without,” read a 1901 Bowery newspaper article, “but here is five cents to buy hokey-pokey [ice cream].  That much [parents] can afford.” 

     Since then, ice cream’s popularity has continued to grow by the triple scoopful…much like the World Record ice cream sundae that weighed in at 54,915 pounds!


     In 1995 the International Ice Cream Association reported that retail sales in the ice cream industry had reached an all-time high of $10.7 billion. 

     The United States alone produced over 1.55 billion gallons of ice cream in 2007 – enough for every man, woman and child in America to gobble about 24 quarts! 

     90% of U.S. households buy ice cream and ice cream related products every year, with kids ages 2-17 gobbling the most:  they sip it in sodas, slurp it in shakes, plop it on cones, nibble it on sticks, drown it in chocolate syrup Monday through Sundae, and would even eat pizza-a-la-mode, if they could.

boy and dog girl and cone boy and spoon

     And now, kids can read about their favorite dessert too!

     We All Scream for Ice Cream! is an everything-you-always-wanted-to-know-about-ice cream book, suitable for serious creamologists who need frosty facts for school research reports, or the occasional banana-splitter looking for some chilly fun on a hot summer afternoon.  So whether you’re 8 or 80 or somewhere in between, let’s hear a scream for We All Scream for Ice Cream! 


Delicious Comments from Reviewers:

School Library Journal:  In this comprehensive book, Wardlaw details the history of this frozen dessert…with lively quotes and anecdotes. The format makes for easy reading, with humorous sidebars and fun poems or quotes introducing each short chapter.  [The book] could easily be used for school reports.”  

sundae in bowl

Family Life Magazine:  “This is 216 pages of pure joy and a fun read for everyone, from kids to curmudgeons…incredible research….”

sundae in bowl

The Ice Screamer:  “Delightful illustrations…a very well researched book [filled with] tantalizing factoids and anecdotes…so fun to read, every page turns with a smile or a chuckle.  You cannot resist picking up this book, [and] like with a good bowl of ice cream, [you’ll] devour it too fast.  We All Scream for Ice Cream is for anyone who loves ice cream.”


To Research We All Scream for Ice Cream . . .

lee and cone

Lee Wardlaw read dozens of books, magazines, journals and manuscripts . . .  toured two ice cream factories and a dairy farm . . . interviewed industry taste testers, a cone manufacturer and a collector of antique ice cream machines . . . took scoop lessons from a 1930’s soda jerk . . . made ice cream, cones, and chocolate sauces in my kitchen . . . and tasted every brand of ice cream she could get a spoon into – gaining six pounds in the process!

As a child, Lee and her best friend, Kristi, used to ride their bikes three miles to the nearest Baskin-Robbins. Lee’s favorite flavor was Pink Bubblegum.  She used to pick out all the gum chunks (storing them in the pocket of her jeans!), gobble the ice cream, then snap, crackle and pop the gum on the long bike ride home.

Today, Lee’s favorite flavors are her own home made French vanilla and McConnell's Chocolate Raspberry Truffle. 


Frosty Facts & Ice Cream Trivia

The United States makes over 1.5 billion
gallons of ice cream a year.
That's enough for every man, woman, and child
in America to eat 184 single scoop cones:
one a day for each of us for almost six months!

6 cones

Kids between the ages of 2 and 12
are the biggest ice-screamers,
eating more than half of the ice cream sandwiches, bars
and prepackaged cones made each year.

girl and neopolitin cone

Iced dairy products made from the milk
of the horse, buffalo, yak, camel, cow and goat
first appeared during the T'ang Dynasty in China (618-907 A.D.).
King T'ang himself relished an iced-milk dish called kumiss.
 The frosty concoction included rice, flour, and "dragon's eyeball
powder", better known today as camphor, a chemical
taken from the wood of an evergreen tree.

girl and cow

Café Procope became the world's first restaurant to serve ice cream
when it opened its doors in 1686. The Paris café dished up chocolate,
vanilla and strawberry - - considered exotic flavors back then. Today,
you can still buy your old favorites there, more than three hundred years
after the first scoop was served!

cafe procope

Le Café de Procope, 1743


American presidents
George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison
all loved ice cream.
During the summer of 1790,
Washington ordered $200 worth of the delicious dessert:
the equivalent of $96,400 today!

jeffersons recipe

Jefferson’s handwritten recipe for vanilla ice cream.


In 1843, Nancy M. Johnson
received a patent for the first
hand-cranked ice cream freezer.
She later sold the patent for a mere $1500.

sketch churn

Jacob Fussell, the Father of the Ice Cream Industry,
opened the first commercial ice cream plant
 in the U.S. in 1851.
At that time, the average American ate
less than one teaspoon of ice cream a year.

jacob fussell

Jacob Fussell


Some sources say the ice cream soda was created by two newsboys in
1872 at a candy shop in New York City, when they asked the fountain
dispenser to plop a scoop of ice cream and a slice of pineapple into a
glass of soda water.

ice cream parlor

A teenager named George Hallauer
 of Two Rivers, Wisconsin,
accidentally invented the ice cream sundae in 1881
 when he asked a soda jerk to pour chocolate syrup –
used in making ice cream sodas –
into his bowl of vanilla ice cream.


The ice cream cone was invented in 1896
by an Italian immigrant named Italo Marchiony,
who sold ice cream from a cart on the streets of New York.
He received a patent in 1903 for the machine
that made these delicious, edible holders.

italo marchlony

Patent drawing for Marchiony’s ice cream cone machine.


In 1904, at the St. Louis World's Fair,
the ice cream cone was popularized
by Ernest Hamwi, a waffle vendor.
When the ice cream salesman in the booth
 next to Hamwi's ran out of serving dishes,
Hamwi rolled a hot waffle into the shape of a cone,
and offered it in place of a dish.
The World's Fair "cornucopias" were an instant hit.

worlds fair

Enjoying ice cream at the World’s Fair


The Eskimo Pie,
invented by Chris Nelson in 1920,
was originally called the I-Scream Bar.

eskimo pie

In 1921, the Commissioner of Ellis Island issued a delicious
decree: all immigrants arriving in this country would receive a free
scoop of ice cream with their first American meal.


During World War II,
cone manufacturers had trouble getting wheat flour
since it was needed to make bread
and other food products for American soldiers overseas.
Several companies in Philadelphia
solved this problem by making ice cream cones
out of crushed, sweetened popcorn!


An ice cream shop in Venezuela, Helados Coromoto,
 is listed in the Guinness book of World Records
 as serving the most flavors: 550!
 The specialty of the house is pabellon criollo,
 which is similar to the national dish of shredded beef,
black beans, rice and plantains (a type of banana).


12 pounds of milk are needed
to make one gallon of ice cream.

glass of milk

It takes about 50 licks to eat a single scoop ice cream cone.

eaten cones

You would need a tower of 1,209 Eskimo Pies, stacked end-to-end,
to stand as high as the Washington Monument. It would take a chain
of 3 billion Eskimo Pies to reach the moon.

full moon

According to the International Ice Cream Association,
 more ice cream is sold on Sunday than any other day of the week.

ice cream truck

A 19th century law is still on the books today
 in Newark, New Jersey,
which forbids eating ice cream after 6 p.m.
 without a doctor's approval.

ice cream doc


Ten Weirdest Ice Cream Flavors

1. Mashed potato and bacon
2. Tuna fish
3. Fried Pork Rind
4. Chili con Carne
5. Garlic
6. Sauerkraut
7. Horseradish and Beer
8. Mustard
9. Dill Pickle
10. Ketchup

tuna fish

The Five Most Popular Ice Cream Flavors in America

1. Vanilla
2. Chocolate
3. Butter Pecan
4. Strawberry
5. Neapolitan




Recipe for E-Z Ice Cream
(Ice Cream in a Bag)

Kids ages 2 to 102 can make this ice cream with little muss or fuss - - and it's delicious! You don't need an ice cream machine, and you don't need a freezer for hardening or storage, so you can make this recipe on camping trips, at parties, school, the beach - - just about anywhere!

You will need:

1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups ice cubes (about two large handsful)
6 tablespoons rock salt
1 Ziploc brand sandwich bag, or other sandwich-size plastic sealable bag
1 Ziploc brand freezer bag (quart-sized), or other large, plastic sealable freezer bag
1 pair of oven mitts
1 dishtowel
1 spoon


cone Pour the cream into the sandwich-sized bag.
cone Add sugar and vanilla extract to the same bag.
cone Seal the bag. (Make sure it's tightly closed, otherwise your ingredients will leak.)
cone Place the closed sandwich bag inside the freezer bag.
cone Pour the ice into the freezer bag.
cone Pour the rock salt into the freezer bag.
cone Seal the freezer bag. Tightly, please!
cone Put on your oven mitts; or wrap the dishtowel loosely around the freezer bag.
cone Shake, rock, roll, and squeeze the bag for a full 5 minutes. (Note: the bag is going to get very cold, between 18-20 degrees F. The mitts or dishtowel will keep your hands from freezing.)

cone Open the freezer bag and remove the sandwich bag. Using the dish towel, quickly wipe away any rock salt and water from the outside of the sandwich bag. (The ice will have almost completely melted, so the outside of your sandwich bag will be wet.) This will keep the salt and water out of your sandwich bag - - and your ice cream! -- when you open it.
cone Open the sandwich bag and . . . enjoy! You may eat the ice cream right out of the bag, or spoon it into a bowl. To remove every last delicious bit of the ice cream, turn the bag inside out and scrape the sides with your spoon.

Makes 1 serving.


Cool Links


Ice Screamers
Founded in 1982, The Ice Screamers is a collectors club whose members specialize in collecting ice cream parlor and soda fountain memorabilia.

Create and send an ice cream cone or sundae
card to your friends and family.


Official Ice Cream Taster
In this video, you’ll meet John Harrison, the official ice cream taster for Dreyer’s and Edy’s brand ice cream!  Site includes recipes, an ice cream quiz and a chance to Ask John any question you may have about you-know-what!

doc wilson

Doc Wilson’s Favorite Ice Cream Flavors
(with recipes!)
In 1998, Doc Wilson was recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as owning the largest collection of working antique ice cream freezers.  Doc passed away in 2006, but his favorite recipes live on!

ben jerry

From Cow to Cone
A moooovelous mooovie about how ice cream is made.


Reading is Cool Bookmarks
Download a template for making four bookmarks.

Coming soon . . . lesson plans for
We All Scream for Ice Cream!

ice cream cones