Victorian American Summers
Nineteenth century Americans (middle- and upper-class) loved the summer season. They frolicked at the seaside, bathed in the sea, sipped frosty Coca-Cola, picnicked on fried chicken, and enjoyed cold desserts. Just like today, folks back then loved ice cream.
When they weren't making ice cream at home, they enjoyed it in cafes, restaurants, bakeries, and ordered it delivered for grand occasions.
Saloons for Ladies (and polite company)
Saloon, you say?
Nineteenth century saloons included drinking establishments, of course. But the term was used widely to include public rooms or building used for a specific purpose. Like an ice cream saloon.
Note that this 1867 ad aims to gain female patrons: "...take pleasure in informing the public, especially the Ladies, that their Spacious and Magnificent Saloon... is now open."
Memphis wasn't alone in marketing ice cream saloons to females. Little Rock also catered to a lady's preferences for peace, quiet, and orderliness.
Raleigh, North Carolina had its own female-friendly Ladies' Ice Cream Saloon.
Ice Cream Saloons by Other Names
Ice Cream Parlor
Plenty of ice cream establishments called themselves parlors. Several other names cropped up in nineteenth-century newspapers.
Ice Cream Rooms
A bakery in Ohio, selling pastries and other delicacies, advertised its Ice Cream Rooms.
A fellow named Charles Hoffman "has completed his Ice Cream Saloon," at Hoffman's Rooms. Apparently Hoffman was already in the restaurant business.
Ice Cream Salons
This first example comes from a German-language newspaper of St. Louis in 1858. Flora Garten, a "Bier- und Ice Cream-Salon."
Apparently the term "salon" was used for ice cream saloons beyond the German-speaking. D. Lopez advertised his bakery like this: "Confectioner, Chocolate Manufactory, Pastry, Cake and Ice Cream Salon."
Have you identified other names for ice cream saloons used in Victorian-era America?
Please scroll down and comment.
Copyright Ⓒ 2021 Kristin Holt LC