As the curtain comes down on the 50th National Ice Cream Month, folks in South Dakota are once again reminded about the Mount Rushmore State's most significant contribution to the frozen dessert industry.

The year was 1979 and inside the dairy plant on the South Dakota State University campus in Brookings plant manager Shirley Seas and two dairy science students, Joe Leedom and Joe Van Treeck, combined chunks of Oreo cookies with vanilla ice cream to create what we now know as cookies & cream ice cream.

At least that's the story we've all been told for the past four decades.

KYBB-FM / B102.7 logo
Get our free mobile app

Recently in a story titled 14 Most Popular Ice Cream Flavors In The US And Where They Came From, the food website Mashed repeated the SDSU origin story for the beginnings of cookies & cream, but included at least three other possible sources for the creation of the iconic flavor:

'Malcolm Stogo, the founder of Ice Cream University, also claims to have invented the flavor in 1977 at his Philadelphia ice cream shop. Blue Bell Creameries also claims to have invented Cookies 'n Cream, but their attempt to patent the flavor in 1981 did not succeed. Edy's claims that John Harrison first mixed up the flavor in 1982.'

We'll never know exactly who was first in the cookies & cream race, but we'll all agree that we're sure glad we live in a world where it exists!

LOOK: 20 American foods that raise eyebrows outside of the US

Stacker compiled a list of 20 unusual and uniquely American foods that might raise eyebrows outside the U.S.

LOOK: Food history from the year you were born

From product innovations to major recalls, Stacker researched what happened in food history every year since 1921, according to news and government sources.

LOOK: Here are copycat recipes from 20 of the most popular fast food restaurants in America

More From KYBB-FM / B102.7