Saturday, February 2, 2013

Alfred L. Cralle ice cream scoop

Alfred L. Cralle  September 4, 1866–1920) - Is best remembered for inventing the ice cream scoop, a design still in use today. Born in Kenbridge, Lunenburg County, Virginia. He attended local schools and worked with his father in the carpentry trade as a young man, becoming interested in mechanics.

Moving to Washington, DC he took advanced courses at Wayland Seminary, one of a number of schools founded by the American Baptist Home Mission Society to educate African -Americans after the Civil War.

Later, he settled in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where he served as a porter at Markell Brothers' drug store and the St. Charles Hotel. While working Cralle noticed that ice cream, which had become a popular confection, was difficult to dispense. It tended to stick to spoons and ladles, usually requiring use of two hands and at least two implements to serve.

Alfred L. CralleTo overcome this, he invented a one handed mechanical device now known as the ice cream scoop and applied for a patent. On February 2, 1897, he was granted U.S. Patent #576395. Cralle’s invention originally called “Ice Cream Mold and Disher” was designed to be able to keep ice cream and other foods from sticking, and easy to operate with one hand. Strong and durable, effective, inexpensive, it could be constructed in almost any desired size and shape, with no delicate parts that could break or malfunction.

Alfred L. Cralle went on to become a successful businessman as well. He was named assistant manager when the Afro-American Financial, Accumulating, Merchandise and Business Association in Pittsburgh was organized.

Alfred L. Cralle ice cream scoop

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