The History of Doughnut Day

National Doughnut Day, the first Friday of June, is more than a celebration of our love for the fried confectionaries. The day actually has its roots in America’s war history.

The idea for Donut Day began on the battlefields of France during World War I when Salvation Army workers served coffee and doughnuts to soldiers in the trenches. Rations were poor so the doughnut idea was conceived as a means of bringing the soldiers cheer. Doughnuts were not the reason Salvation Army workers were in the fighting zones of France. Those men and women were there primarily to give spiritual aid and comfort to the American soldier and his allies. They were there to be a link with home and family.

Though that world war has come and gone, Salvation Army workers continue to care for and comfort thousands of people each day who battle hunger around.

77th Annual National Donut Day Fun Facts:
World_War_I_-_Doughnut_Girl
Salvation Army Chicago Donut Day HistorySalvation Army:

  • The Salvation Army started National Donut Day during the Great Depression as a way to raise funds and bring awareness to The Salvation Army’s social service programs.
  • National Donut Day commemorates the “donut lassies,” female Salvation Army volunteers who provided writing supplies, stamps, clothes-mending and home-cooked meals, and of course, donuts, for soldiers on the front lines.
  • Approximately 250 Salvation Army volunteers provided assistance to American soldiers in France starting in 1917 during WWI.
  • With limited resources, these treats were fried, only seven at a time. The Salvation Army’s Ensign Margaret Sheldon and Adjutant Helen Purviance cleverly thought of frying donuts in soldiers’ helmets.
  • Last year, 30 million Americans received assistance from The Salvation Army’s 3,600 officers, 60,000 employees and 3.4 million volunteers.



Salvation Army Chicago Donut Day HistoryEntenmann’s Bakery:
WWI_Doughnut_Girl

  • Entenmann’s has made more than 4 billion donuts – if you laid them end-to-end, you could wrap them around the earth almost 9 times!
  • The Rich Frosted Donut has been the #1 seller since its introduction in 1972. (2012 marks the 40-Year Anniversary – that’s a sweet celebration.)
  • Entenmann’s Donut Facility in Carlisle, Pennsylvaniais the largest Donut Plant in the United States, producing more than 40 million boxes of yummy delight each year.
  • Believing that people were more inclined to buy what they can see, the Entenmann’s brothers, William, Robert and Charles, and mother, Martha, invented the familiar “see-through” cake box for baked goods in 1959.
  • At one time, more than 168 million pounds of chocolate have been used for Entenmann’s Rich Frosted Donuts, enough to fill all of theGreat Lakes.
  • In the early ’50s, Frank Sinatra used to call theBay Shorebakery to place weekly orders from Entenmann’s.

Source: http://www.salarmychicago.org/donutday/donutDayHistory.htm

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