A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from August 31, 2006
Corn Dog (or Corndog or Corny Dog)

The “corn dog” (or “corndog” or “corny dog") is a “hot dog” coated in corn meal, served on a stick. It was long thought that the corndog was invented at the Texas State Fair in 1942, but there are many citations before that time. Several 1940s citations state that the corndog was first served in the 1930s at the Louisiana State Fair. “Corn-dog-on-a-stick” is claimed to have been invented in 1946, but is probably earlier.

An annual Corndog Festival has been held in Dallas since 1995.

The evidence of a 1929 “Krusty Korn Dog” is interesting.


Wikipedia; Corn dog
A corn dog is a hot dog coated in cornbread batter and deep fried in hot oil, although there are baked variations. Originally made without sticks, almost all corn dogs are now on sticks. Canadians call these pogos (see below). They are known in Australia as “battered savs”, Dagwood dogs”, “Pluto pups” or “dippy dogs”. In South Korea, they are known as hotdogs and actual hotdogs are scarce. Elsewhere, they may be known as American Hot Dogs.

The corn dog was popularized in 1942 at the Texas State Fair when it was introduced by Neil Fletcher, although the Pronto Pup vendors at the Minnesota State Fair claim to have invented the corn dog in 1941.

There is an article from the Port Arthur (Texas) News on newspaperarchive.com from 1940. The story is about the first corn dog (not on a stick) stand opening in Port Arthur. The article states that the “Debut of the corn dog came some time ago at the Louisiana state fair”. Unfortunately, newspaperarchive.com is a pay site. Here is the search link that yields this article.

The first corn dog on a stick was the “cozy dog,” and it is still served in the “Cozy Dog Drive In” restaurant in Springfield, Illinois. In 1946, Ed Waldmire Jr. used a batter supplied by his friend Don Strand and used cocktail forks as sticks. He called his new hot dog a “crusty cur”. However, Ed’s wife Virginia is credited with naming them “cozy dogs” because she felt naming a food product “crusty” didn’t sound very appealing. 

Corndog Festival
The Corndog Festival
Eleventh Annual 2005

300 Years of Kitchen Collectibles
new and greatly expanded third edition
by Linda Campbell Franklin
Florence, Alabama: Books Americana
1991
Pg. 235, col. 2:
IV-180.  (ILLUSTRATION—ed.)
Corn dog baker.
“‘Krusty Korn Dog’ baker, also sandwich roaster (grill) or steak fryer.  A big money maker!  For use on gas, gasoline, oil or coal stoves.  ‘Krusty Korn Dogs’ are novel and delicious.  The hot dog is baked inside the corn batter, which as it bakes, moulds itself to resemble an ear of corn 6 3/8"L and 1 1/2” diameter.  Easy to make: Red hots are first fried in butter, then placed in ‘korn dog’ sections together with required amount of batter, they are then quickly and thoroughly baked together.  Baker is made of cast iron, smooth japanned finish, with heavy, sturdy wire coil pan handles.  Heavy lifting handles at each end.” Frame is 2 1/2” x 10 1/4” x 21 1/4”; fryer pan is 3/4” deep x 8 1/2"H x 8 3/8”.  You bought the frame and a fry pan (griddle), and a pair of the “Krusty Korn Sausage Dog Pans,” each of which made two, separately to suite your business.  In Pick-Barth wholesale catalog of many makers’ hotel and restaurant supplies, 1929.
$40.00-$150.00

eBay
Albert Pick-Barth Co.-1929-Everything in Equipment Furnishings and Supplies for Hotels, Restaurants, Clubs and Institutions. Very good condition.

29 July 1939, Washington Post, “A Woman’s New York” by Alice Hughes, pg. 9, col. 8:
THE OTHER night we were telling Stanley and Billie Marcus, of Dallas, about our Hollywood adventures with the “nutberger.” They came right back with one of their home-town delicacies, the “corn dog,” which is a frankfurter baked in cornbread.  So now I shall have another excuse to pay them a visit to Texas.

23 April 1940, Ada (OK) Evening News, pg. 5, col. 6 ad:
CORN DOG
The Sandwich Sensation
New—Different
At Curb or Counter
10c
SILVER DOLLAR

14 June 1940, Long Beach (CA) Independent, pg. 6 ad:
“Corn Dog Is Coming”?

21 June 1940, Galveston (TX) Daily News, pg. 17, col. 1:
JIMMY KITTS held open house at the Jack Tar Courts the other night to talk corn dogs and football. The dogs, in case you haven’t heard, are a Kitts confection which will be introduced on the Island Saturday at Deppen’s on the beach. Its architecture is as simple as its taste is pleasing. Take one fat dog of the hot variety, clothe it in corn bread batter, cook, serve, dunk in sauce and masticate.

1 July 1940, Greeley (CO) Daily Tribune, pg. 11, col. 2:
He is promoting a new type of sandwich in Houston—the “corn dog”—a weiner wrapped in corn bread.

19 July 1940, New Orleans (LA) States, pg. 11, col. 1:
CORN DOG MAKE DEBUT IN NEW ORLEANS
New Sandwich Holds Skinless Frankfurter in Cornbread Roll
The “corn dog,” New Orleans’ newest sandwich, will make its bow to the public tomorrow under an exclusive city franchise granted to A and G sandwich shops, it was announced today by Clifton L. Ganus, president of Finest Foods, Inc., operators of A and G system.
(...)
Debut of “corn dogs” came some time ago at the Louisiana State Fair and the idea then spread to nearby Texas. In the first two weeks at a single stand in Dallas 14,000 were sold. Last month the new-type sandwich spread to Galveston.

19 July 1940, New Orleans (LA) States, “Sports from the Crow’s Nest” by Harry Martinez, pg. 8, col. 8:
KITTS FEEDS ‘WOLVES’ WITH CORN DOG
(...)
Figures reveal since June 7 a total of 52,000 were sold in Houston and in two weeks Galveston disposed 35,000. Corn dog was first introduced at the Louisiana State Fair at Shreveport. It was thought of by Gene Goss, a Dallas man, when he paid a visit to Kansas City and tasted cornbread shaped like an ear of corn. Jimmie Kitts and his associates decided that Mr. Goss’ idea of forming a “huddle” around the frankfurter should work as well as the “hidden-ball” in football and a simple little idea has now been turned into a profitable business.

23 August 1940, Austin (TX) Statesman, pg. 5 ad:
Yum, Yum...It’s Here
CORN DOG
Austin’s Newest Sandwich!
Have You Tried A CORN DOG?
Made with GERMINATED CORN MEAL and PURE MEAT, SKINLESS WIENERS
They’re Only 10c
STARTING TODAY

“Treasure Pots”
Recipes Compiled by Members of
The Austin (TX) Woman’s Club
First edition
September 1940
Pg. 129:
Puppy Stick Wieners
1/2 cup flour.
3 teaspoons baking powder.
1/2 teaspoon salt.
2 tablespoons sugar.
1 cup yellow corn meal.
1 egg, beaten.
1 cup milk.
2 tablespoons melted butter.

Sift together dry ingredients. Add corn meal, egg and milk. Add butter. Bake in buttered, hot iron corn stick pans in moderate oven at 400 degrees F. about 30 to 40 minutes. Makes nine large or 12 small sticks. Put cooked wieners in the middle of the stick before cooking.

4 October 1940, San Antonio (TX) Light, pg. 1C, col. 1:
A hungried-but-hurried world had something new to nibble on Saturday.

Introduced to San Antonians was the corndog, a hot dog with a piece of cornbread baked to look like an ear of corn. The concoction is six inches long, and was first introduced at a country fair in Louisiana.

A small cup of special sauce for dunking the corndog and a helping of molasses beans goes with the new offering, which is eaten by hand.

25 October 1940, Monroe (LA) News-Star, “‘Corn Dog’ Set for Appearance,” pg. 3, cols. 6-7:
“The debut of ‘Corn Dogs’ was made last year at the Louisiana State Fair and the product became so sensational that immediately plans were developed for national distribution,” Mr. Brown explained.

29 October 1940, Port Arthur (TX) News, pg. 10, col. 2:
Presents Corn Dog
JACK PAYNE
The corn dog will soon make its bow in Port Arthur as the city’s newest sandwich treat, according to Jack Payne, proprietor of the Silver Hut, where it will be served to guests in the near future.

The Silver Hut, located at 4508 Procter, has obtained the exclusive franchise for the corn dog sandwich, Payne stated. “It is destined to be the city’s fastest selling sandwich if it enjoys only half the popularity which it has achieved elsewhere,” Payne says. “Everywhere it has been introduced, it has been an instant hit with both young and old.”

This sandwich innovation is described as a juicy, skinless frankfurter baked in a long cornbread roll on a griddle resembling a waffle iron. The finished product resembles an ear of corn because of the pattern of the griddle. Served with the sandwich will be baked beans and a special delicious sauce, according to Payne.

Only the choicest ingredients go into their making, it is claimed. Fresh eggs, rich milk, quality corn meal and other ingredients are used in making the cornbread.

Debut of the corn dog came some time ago at the Louisiana state (Col. 3—ed.) fair. The idea later sprang to nearby Texas. In the first two weeks they were introduced to Dallas, one single stand sold more than 14,000 corn dogs.

24 November 1940, Los Angeles Times, pg. 6 ad:
CORN DOG
IS COMING?
SEE FRIDAY’S TIMES

29 November 1940, Los Angeles Times, pg. 27 ad:
“HUM-HUM-M, IT’S HERE!”
CORN DOG
(A dachshund is drawn on corn on the cob—ed.)
Served with delicious baked beans and special sauce
You’ll Want to Eat One Today—Los Angeles’ and the World’s Newest Sandwich!
Made with a pure meat, skinless wiener, baked into a delicious cornbread.  They’ll just melt in your mouth!
THEY’RE ONLY 15c
TRY ONE TODAY
Get Corn Dogs At—
Adams-Sheetz
Drive-In
(4 convenient locations)

9 March 1941, Amarillo (TX) News and Globe, section 2, pg. 2, col. 5:
ANY CORN DOGS HERE?

Is there a place in Amarillo where corn dogs are served? We can’t find it, if there is. There’s a place on the highway in Plainview—can’t remember the name but it had a large Neon sign showing a pig pushing a wheel barrow or something—which sells corn dogs for a dime. They are delicious. The corn part is just plain cornbread and the “dog” part is a long tender frankfurter.

The corn bread batter is put in an iron cornbread stick pan which has a top. Then the frankfurter is added. The total is cooked first on one side, then on the other side. It’s served with mustard. When we’re driving to Lubbock, or back from Lubbock, we find a delicious treat in corn dog and buttermilk.

10 May 1941, The Daily Texan (Austin, TX), pg. 6 (full page ad):
CORN DOGS...10c
A juicy, well-seasoned wienie baked in smooth, full flavored corn batter, served with West Texas Sauce and Chili Beans.
DOUBLE “J” CORRAL
2426 Guadalupe

7 December 1941, New York Times, pg. XX2:
These are ‘corn dog’ stands, ‘blink your lights for car service,’ and open air movies at 25 cents plus tax.
(Referring to Florida—ed.)

9 May 1946, Centralia (WA) Daily Chronicle, pg. 2, col. 7 ad:
NEW—DIFFERENT
LOLLI-PUPS
A hot dog on a stick, cooked in a golden brown bun. The goodness is sealed in.
Gish’s Lunch

24 May 1946, Dunkirk (NY) Evening Observer, pg. 6, cols. 6-7:
Frankfurter Is Now on a Stick
A Cincinnati company has come up with a new validation of that American institution, the hot dog. It’s a frankfurter on a stick, covered in its own private bun.

6 November 1946, Alton (IL) Evening Telegraph, pg. 17, col. 4 ad:
COZY DOGS
Equipment and Mix
(The Hot Dog on a Stick, Dipped in Batter Mix and Fried in Deep Fat)
Eat Treat Sensation of Springfield Fair and Bethalto Homecoming
(...)
COZY DOGS
Miss. Valley Div., 4,
EAST ALTON, ILLINOIS

21 May 1947, Nashua (Iowa) Reporter, pg. 10, col. 3 ad:
“WOW’
FLOUR MIX FOR MAKING A HOT DOG ON A STICK
(McGowan’s Super Market - -ed.)

27 May 1947, Valley Morning Star (Harlingen, TX), pg. 8, col. 3 ad:
COZY DOGS
The sensational new sandwich process now available for installation. A tasty hot dog on a stick, dipped in a batter mix, and fried in fat. Be the first in your locality for this big money maker.
COZY DOG
Box 831
Mission, Texas

12 October 1983, New York Times, pg. C3:
His idea was the corn dog, or Fletchers Original State Fair Corny Dog to be precise, a hot dog on a stick wrapped in cornbread that is as much a culinary tradition in Texas as scrapple is in Philadelphia or soft pretzels are in New York.

When the State Fair of Texas, America’s largest, opened last Friday, Mr. Fletcher was on hand to lord over six stands selling the creation he and his brother, Carl, invented 41 years ago.
(...)
After trying out a series of names ranging from K-9 and Brown Bomber to French Fried Hot Dog and Meal on a Stick, the Fletchers finally came up with a name and built a clientele.

(TRADEMARK)
Word Mark PRONTO PUPS
Goods and Services IC 029. US 046. G & S: batter coated franks. FIRST USE:
19420900. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19420900
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Serial Number 74629375
Filing Date February 3, 1995
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Published for Opposition October 31, 1995
Registration Number 1976123
Registration Date May 28, 1996
Owner (REGISTRANT) Pronto Pup Co., Inc. CORPORATION OREGON 8437 S.W.
Terwilliger Blvd. Portland OREGON 97219
Attorney of Record OLIVER D. OLSON
Prior Registrations 1517348
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Register PRINCIPAL
Affidavit Text SECT 15. SECT 8 (6-YR).
Live/Dead Indicator LIVE

(TRADEMARK)
Word Mark PRONTO PUPS
Goods and Services (ABANDONED) IC 030. US 046. G & S: EDIBLE SPECIALTY
PREPARED FLOUR MIX USED IN THE CREATION OF THE ORIGINAL HOT DOG ON A STICK; “A
WIENER DUN IN A BUN;” COMMONLY CALLED AND SOLD AS PRONTO PUPS. FIRST USE:
19440600. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19440700
Mark Drawing Code (3) DESIGN PLUS WORDS, LETTERS, AND/OR NUMBERS
Design Search Code 020110 020126 040702 081103 090505
Serial Number 73726718
Filing Date May 10, 1988
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Owner (APPLICANT) KARNIS, JOHN J. DBA PRONTO PUP FLOUR CO. OF MINNESOTA AND
ILLINOIS INDIVIDUAL UNITED STATES 7761 KENTUCKY CIRCLE BROOKLYN PARK
MINNESOTA 55445
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Register PRINCIPAL
Live/Dead Indicator DEAD
Abandonment Date July 10, 1989

(TRADEMARK)
Word Mark PRONTO PUPS
Goods and Services IC 030. US 046. G & S: FLOUR MIX FOR COATING WEINERS,
CHEESE, SHRIMP, OYSTERS, ONION RINGS, FISH, MEAT, FRUITS AND VEGETABLES. FIRST
USE: 19420423. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19420000
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Serial Number 73712735
Filing Date February 22, 1988
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Published for Opposition September 27, 1988
Registration Number 1517348
Registration Date December 20, 1988
Owner (REGISTRANT) PRONTO PUP CO. INC. CORPORATION OREGON 8431 S.W.
TERWILLIGER BLVD. PORTLAND OREGON 97219
Assignment Recorded ASSIGNMENT RECORDED
Attorney of Record LEE R. SCHERMERHORN
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Register PRINCIPAL
Affidavit Text SECT 15. SECT 8 (6-YR).
Live/Dead Indicator LIVE

(Trademark)
Word Mark FLETCHER’S STATE FAIR CORNY DOGS
Goods and Services (ABANDONED) IC 042. US 100. G & S: RESTAURANT AND SNACK BAR SERVICES. FIRST USE: 19420000. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19420000
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Design Search Code
Serial Number 73434860
Filing Date July 18, 1983
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Owner (APPLICANT) FLETCHER’S INDUSTRIES, INC. CORPORATION TEXAS 179 MEADOW KNOLL LANE LEWISVILLE TEXAS 75067
Attorney of Record RONALD V. THURMAN
Disclaimer NO CLAIM IS MADE TO THE EXCLUSIVE RIGHT TO USE “CORNY DOGS” APART FROM THE MARK AS SHOWN
Type of Mark SERVICE MARK
Register PRINCIPAL
Live/Dead Indicator DEAD
Abandonment Date March 26, 1986

(Trademark)
Word Mark FLETCHER’S CORNY DOG MIX
Goods and Services (CANCELLED) IC 030. US 046. G & S: Flour Mix for Batter Used in Making Batter-Covered, Deep-Fried Frankfurters and Weiners for Sale to Restaurants, Snack Bars, Catering Services and Other Fast Food Services. FIRST USE: 19420000. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19420000
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Design Search Code
Serial Number 73437231
Filing Date August 1, 1983
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Published for Opposition November 20, 1984
Registration Number 1317185
Registration Date January 29, 1985
Owner (REGISTRANT) Fletcher’s Industries, Inc. CORPORATION TEXAS 179 Meadow Knoll La. Lewisville TEXAS 75067
(LAST LISTED OWNER) SARA LEE FOODS, INC. CORPORATION DELAWARE 10151 CARVER ROAD LAW DEPARTMENT CINCINNATI OHIO 45242
Assignment Recorded ASSIGNMENT RECORDED
Attorney of Record CHARLES Y LACKEY
Disclaimer No claim is made to the exclusive right to use “Corny Dog Mix”, apart from the mark as shown.
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Register PRINCIPAL-2(F)
Affidavit Text SECT 15. SECT 8 (6-YR).
Live/Dead Indicator DEAD
Cancellation Date November 5, 2005

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • Thursday, August 31, 2006 • Permalink