Snow Cone History
Samuel Bert of Dallas sold snow cones at the State Fair of Texas in 1919, and he invented a snow cone-making machine in 1920. Bert was a fixture at the State Fair, selling his snow cones there (and selling his machines world-wide) until his death in 1984.
In 1934, inventor Ernest Hansen patented the first known “ice block shaver” in New Orleans, Louisiana. He was inspired to create a more refined and hygienic version of the popular Italian ice sold from push-carts in the city. His wife Mary created many flavors of fresh syrups to flavor his finely shaved artificial “snow”. “Sno balls” have been popular in New Orleans ever since. Hansen continued work at the original Hansen’s Sno-Bliz in Uptown New Orleans on Tchoupitoulas Street through 2005, although his granddaughter, Ashley Hansen, has taken over much of the workload. Mr. Hansen died in late 2005, shortly after Hurricane Katrina and Mrs. Hansen died in March 2006.
There are differences between a New Orleans “Sno Ball” and a “Snow Cone.” While a Snow Cone consists of hard, crunchy, shaved ice and limited amounts of syrup, Sno Balls are made from a very fine powdered ice about the same consistency of actual snow and are drowned in syrup. It is custom to eat with a straw and a spoon.
Usually, the snow cones are sold at stadiums and coliseums, and by ice cream vans or by car peddlers at parks. In New Orleans, there are “sno ball stands” located in neighborhoods throughout the city.
Our snow cones are huge, deep frozen (so you can enjoy the ice all the way to the end), and the best on a hot day. If you need a snow cone - contact Coneheads to see when we are going to be in your neighborhood. For parties and corporate events, you can book Coneheads to custom the event for you.