The United States of America is the greatest country on this earth, but over the past 40 years its manufacturing has slowly left the country for other countries with much cheaper labor and related manufacturing costs such as China, Mexico, India, Japan etc.. which has left many of our once great industrial cities in disrepair and abandonment. With such large strong competition it has also made it very difficult for small businesses to survive. This brings us to Bridgeport, Connecticut which was once one of the wealthiest and most prestigious cities in the entire U.S.A with its enormous manufacturing capabilities with companies such as General Electric, Remington Arms, Locomobile, Trumbull Car Company, Bridgeport Machine Company, Bridgeport Brass Company, LeBaron Inc., Bryant Electric Company and many more. Bridgeport wasn’t just known for these large names, what really made it great were the many small businesses that also became incredibly well known throughout the country and the first one that comes to mind is the Frisbie Pie Company.
The Frisbie Pie Company was founded in Bridgeport in 1871 by William Russell Frisbie. Now why is this company so important? Well, surely you have heard of the name Frisbie before? Shortly after Mr. Frisbie began selling his Pies on the east side of Bridgeport, school children would stop by after school for some pie and they immediately discovered that if you turned the pie tin over it could be thrown through the air at high speeds and distances. They began throwing them around and yelling “Frisbie” when someone or something got in the way and the “Frisbie” was born.
Students at nearby Universities, such as Yale in New Haven, picked up on the school children’s new found game and discovered that the Frisbie pie tins when inverted had an airfoil shape which is how they were able to fly through the air. Quickly the Frisbie Pie had become known all over country and the Frisbie as not just the Pie, but the game was forever imprinted into American culture.
Throughout The Frisbie Pie Company’s existence, they always had a delivery truck that really set them apart from all the other plain delivery vehicles of the time, with their beautifully designed logo in bold yellow and black font and the red and white colors that really made the trucks pop. Through the years they had trucks of all different makes and sizes including, Divco trucks, Republic trucks, White Trucks, International trucks, Reo Trucks, Fords and of course Chevrolets and many more.
Unfortunately, the Frisbie Pie Company closed its doors in January of 1957 and along with it went its beautiful delivery trucks, but it didn’t go without leaving its mark on America. A year later in 1958 a company called Wham-O began production of their own version of the Frisbie, renaming it the “Frisbee” for copyright reasons because although the Frisbie Pie Company was no longer making their pies, the company remained incorporated and owned by the family. In other words, it was never defunct, but since Wham-O’s Frisbee was introduced to the public in 1958, hundreds of Millions of Frisbees have been sold worldwide.
Recently, and exactly 60 years later, a man from Fairfield, Connecticut named Dan O’Connor has reopened the Frisbie Pie Company’s doors in Bridgeport, CT and he has gotten his distribution off and rolling right away.
Dan says that they are using the original Frisbie recipe and all natural juice ingredients which really set his pies apart from all the other pies currently on the market. Dan has begun distribution to multiple small businesses around Connecticut and hopes to have his Pies available to consumers nationally so they can enjoy the incredible all natural and famous Frisbie taste that was once one of the great prides of Bridgeport, CT.
To really promote his company and to really give the Frisbie Pies company its pride and nostalgic feel and style back, Dan found and restored an original Frisbie Pies 1936 Chevrolet Delivery truck through Dragone Classic Motorcars, a very well-known antique, classic and vintage car business and auction house based in Bridgeport, CT. This truck is nothing short of cool. The attention to detail is outstanding and it really makes you want to have some Frisbie Pies.
The paint looks fantastic, most likely much better than what it would have had originally and the red and white paint scheme is on point and is very correct. To add to the coolness of this Pie wagon is its accessory Mullins trailer from the 1930’s painted to match the truck; that in itself gets this truck and Frisbie Pies some extra points not to mention some extra room for more pies! The trailer even still retains its original Mullins cast wheels and original hubcaps which are very difficult to find. The truck has a finished wood floor in the rear compartment and although the interior is very utilitarian, that is how this truck was built. Under the hood this truck still retains its original 181 cubic inch overhead valve straight six with a single downdrafts carburetor which looks completely rebuilt and its paired with its original 3 speed manual on the floor. Although the engine is nothing exotic, its original and these Chevy straight sixes actually have lots of power, plenty to haul pies around for sure. The truck looks absolutely outstanding and it’s ready to get back on its old route through the streets of Bridgeport once again.
The pictures of the truck were taken at an old abandoned factory only a few blocks away from the original site of the Frisbie Pies factory on Kossuth Street in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Dan has really got something here and best of luck to him and the revamped and famous Frisbie Pie Company, not only is the idea to bring this company back to what it once was a good idea, Dan’s 1936 Chevy Panel Truck is beautiful and here at Driven History we give the entire package two thumbs up!
To learn more about the Frisbie Pie Company and where you can pick them up go to: www.frisbiepie.com