Submitted by the GSCO History Committe
Northern & Northeastern CO
The History Center in in Loveland is more than a collection of old uniforms, books, and badges! In fact, all sorts of Girl Scout Cookies memorabilia is preserved here too, including cookie packages, tins, rewards, incentives, T-shirts, stuffed animals, hats, tote bags, and more.
In 1934, Keebler-Weyl Bakery in Philadelphia, PA was the first commercial company to bake Girl Scout Cookies. At one point, Girl Scout Cookies were baked by as many as 29 bakers across the country including United Biscuit Company of America in Chicago, IL; Bowman Biscuit in Denver, CO; Megowen Educator Food Company in Lowell, MA; Southern Biscuit Company (Famous Food of Virginia-FFV) in Richmond, VA; Burry’s Biscuit in Elizabeth, NJ and Chicago, IL; Weston Biscuit Company in Battle Creek, MI, Passaio, NJ and Burbank, CA; Brownie Baking Company, Spokane WN and Grandma Cookie Company in Portland, OR.
Now, the two official bakers are Little Brownie Bakers in Louisville, KY and ABC Bakery in Brownsburg, IL. Little Brownie Baker makes 450 million Thin Mints a day! Each year, we look forward to a new flavor to try, along with the must have Thin Mints, Trefoils, and Samoas. On anniversaries such as the 100th and 75th, commemorative sampler tins and special boxes were sold. These, too, are collected and often donated to the History Center.
Recently, this image of a Burry’s case for DUTCH’N SUCH cookies and newspaper clipping were sent to us via Susan Kabat, GSCO volunteer support specialist. After a bit of searching on the internet, we determined that it was a cookie offered in the early 1980’s and had the windmill on it. According to Wikipedia, Burry Biscuit Company dates to 1888. In 1938, it moved to Elizabeth, NJ from Chicago, IL and manufactured Girl Scout Cookies, which it called Plantation cookies. The cookies were packed in a sealed cardboard cylinder, and later the cookies were packed in cans. In 1962, Burry’s was the largest producer of Girl Scout Cookies in the nation and in 1980 changed its name to Burry-Lu. For more than 50 years, Burry Lu supplied cookies to Girl Scout troops and in 1989, ABC Bakery purchased Burry’s Girl Scout cookie division.
GSCO History Center volunteers are busy year ‘round receiving, sometimes repairing, cataloging, lending, displaying, and preserving ALL types of Girl Scout memorabilia. Much of it is like a treasure hunt, tracking down first date of issue of national and international items, their catalog numbers, or originating council events. Then, we are challenged with safely storing them along with appropriate number of duplicates, when available. Rarely, do we save actual cookies from year to year, as they are too tasty to have around, but packages, cases, tins, and incentives are filed away. Remember, buying Girl Scout Cookies is a yummy way to support the girls, troops, and local Girl Scout council programs.
Our committee works hard to preserve and protect our Girl Scout history. We look forward to 2021, gathering again in person, and sharing our passion for Girl Scout History with you and your girls. If you have Girl Scout stories and memories, please share here as well.
Contact the GSCO History Center at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.