Did you know the cookie sales by an individual Girl Scout unit were by the Mistletoe Troop in Muskogee, Oklahoma, in December 1917 at their local high school. Five years later, the Girl Scout magazine The American Girl suggested cookie sales as a fundraiser and provided a simple sugar cookie recipe.. Another eleven year passed and then 1933, Girl Scouts in Philadelphia organized the first commercial sale, selling homemade cookies at the windows of the Philadelphia Gas and Electric Company. In 1936, Girl Scouts of the USA began licensing commercial bakers to produce cookies, in order to increase availability and reduce lead time. The first contracted baker was Keebler-Weyl Bakery, soon joined by Southern Biscuit Company and Burry Biscuit. both later acquired by Interbake Foods in 1937. One hundred twenty five troops launched cookie sales that first year.
World War II brought about food shortages, but the “trooped” on into the 1950s when sugar cookies were joined by three new varieties: Shortbreads, Savannahs, and Thin Mints. Samoas were added in the 1970s. And in the intervening year Do-si-dos, Tagalongs and Lemon Chalet Cremes were added. I believe 2022 is the launch of “adverturefuls” – indulgent brownie-inspired cookies with caramel flavored creme and a hint of sea salt.
If you no longer see the young ladies going door-to-door or at tables set up outside the local grocery store or shopping center, that is because in 2015, Girl Scouts began to offer customers the ability to purchase cookies using an online portal through a mobile app called “Digital Cookie”. No more door-to-door young ladies in green learning entrepreneurial skills in the school of hard knocks. The times are a changing.
This post was inspired by my grand niece who is now a Daisy Girl Scout. I received a supply for our friary through her grandmother (my sister) who was kind enough to send some along. (note bene: the app now sends regular emails to see if resupply is needed.)