Press Release Category: 
Recent Announcements
Publication Date: 
June 2007
Press Release Contact: 

COOPERSTOWN, NY, JUNE 15, 2007—The Farmers’ Museum is pleased to display first delivery truck from one of the largest producers and distributors of frozen foods and premium ice cream, Schwan’s Food Company, in the museum’s major new exhibition, Ice Cream: Our Cool Obsession. Hailing from Marshall, Minnesota, Schwan’s first delivery truck, circa 1953, will only be on view at the museum through next weekend.

Schwan’s home delivery and global food service began with a rural ice cream delivery in 1953. Marvin Schwan and his parents were operating a small dairy in Marshall, Minnesota, and struggling due to a government milk price freeze. On March 18, 1952, Marvin loaded 14 gallons of his family’s ice cream into a 1946 Dodge panel van, which he had purchased for $100, and sold the ice cream in the Montevideo, Minnesota, area. This was the beginning of the now famous Schwan’s route delivery system.

In 1953, the family purchased this refrigerated three-quarters of a ton Ford truck. Like the panel van, it was painted creamy yellow; a color that was later trademarked and called Inca GoldTM. The delivery trucks that you see today are the same color.

Today, The Schwan Food Company is one of the largest producers and distributors of frozen pizza, egg rolls, pies, desserts and premium ice cream. The company’s corporate office building is on the site of the original dairy in Marshall, Minnesota.

Ice Cream: Our Cool Obsession explores the rich history of ice cream, from its ancient origins through the present day. The exhibition comprises historical artifacts, including Ben and Jerry’s original freezer; contemporary and historical photography; a children’s interactive area; and a retro ice cream parlor, The Stone Barn Dairy Bar, where visitors can enjoy their favorite ice cream novelties. The exhibit will be on view through October 31.

ABOUT THE FARMERS’ MUSEUM:
As one of the oldest rural life museums in the country, The Farmers’ Museum in Cooperstown, New York, provides visitors with a unique opportunity to experience 19th-century rural and village life first-hand through authentic demonstrations and interpretative exhibits. The museum, founded in 1943, comprises a Colonial Revival stone barn listed on the National Register for Historic Places, a recreated historic village circa 1845, a late 19th-century Country Fair featuring The Empire State Carousel, and a working farmstead. Through its 19th-century village and farm, the museum preserves important examples of upstate New York architecture, early agricultural tools and equipment, and heritage livestock. The Farmers’ Museum’s outstanding collection of more than 23,000 items encompasses significant historic objects ranging from butter molds to carriages, hand planes to plows. The museum also presents a broad range of interactive educational programs for school groups, families, and adults that explore and preserve the rich agricultural history of the region.

The Farmers’ Museum is located on 5775 State Hwy. 80, Lake Road, in Cooperstown, NY. Museum admission is $11 for adults, $9.50 for visitors age 65 and over, and $5 for children age 7 to 12; children 6 and under and members are admitted free. From April 1 through May 14 and October 9 through October 31, admission prices are reduced to $9 for adults, $8 for seniors age 65 and over, and $4 for children age 7 to 12. Reduced price combination admission tickets that include the Fenimore Art Museum and The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum are also available. For museum hours or general information, please call 1-888-547-1450 or visit www.farmersmuseum.org.

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For more information or images, please contact:
Christine Liggio/Public Relations Office
New York State Historical Association
Fenimore Art Museum/The Farmers’ Museum
Phone: (607) 547-1472/E-mail: cliggio@nysha.org

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