A Sweet Story
It all began in 1913 when Fred H. Wells purchased a horse, a delivery wagon, a few cans and jars, and the good will of the business from Ray Bowers, a dairy farmer in Le Mars, Iowa -- all for $250. The original contract granted Fred H. Wells the milk distribution route and guaranteed a source of raw milk from Mr. Bower's herd of fifteen cows.
Around 1925, Fred H. Wells and his sons began manufacturing ice cream in Le Mars. As the popularity of their ice cream grew, they quickly branched out and began distributing their frozen confections in Remsen and Alton, Iowa, the following year. In 1927 Fred H. Wells and his brother, Harry C. Wells, began a partnership to distribute ice cream in Sioux City, Iowa, located about 25 miles south of Le Mars. In 1928 Fairmont Ice Cream purchased the ice cream distribution system in Sioux City from the Wells brothers along with the right to use the Wells name. Seven years later, in 1935, the Wells brothers decided to again sell ice cream in Sioux City. No longer able to use the name "Wells," the brothers decided to run a "Name That Ice Cream" contest in the Sioux City Journal. A Sioux City man won the $25 cash prize for submitting the winning entry, "Blue Bunny," after noticing how much his son enjoyed the blue bunnies in a department store window at Easter time. The winner, an illustrator by trade, also created the first Blue Bunny logo, used on Blue Bunny packaging for nearly 70 years!
From a single delivery wagon to the world's largest family-owned and managed ice cream producer, Wells 100+ years in the industry is a pretty sweet story.