Hey, Frank Fans!
Tomorrow is National Hot Dog Day. Standing tall alongside hamburgers, hot dogs are one of the most iconic of fun, summertime foods. From the privacy of your own backyard to the crowded stadium park at the ol’ ballgame—hot dogs are enjoyable everywhere! Wieners, Franks, Foot Longs, Dogs—no matter what you call them, they’re delicious! But they sure have collected a lot of names throughout the years.
Pork sausages (the hotdogs’ predecessor) were first made in Frankfurt, Germany which is what led to the name Frankfurters and, of course, ‘Franks’ for short. Foot Longs are pretty self explanatory and ‘Wiener’, in German, translates to ‘little sausage’. So how did the incredibly common name of Hot Dogs come about?
Well, as it does today, sausage came in all different shapes. The thin, long ones were noted for their likeness to the shape of dachshund dogs and so they adopted the name dachshund sausages for a very long time. Following the rise of Frankfurter popularity in the United States around the 1850s, butchers from Germany found a new home in America and introduced these dachshund dogs. They were a big hit for street vendors as well as a fan favorite at baseball games. Our story takes place at a New York baseball game in 1901. Introducing a sports cartoonist named Tad Dorgan who, from his press box seats, overheard the vendors yelling out to the crowd, ‘Get your hot dachshund sausages here!’
Tad went home that night with the idea to depict the scene of the vendors among the crowd. He drew up the scene, but when he was writing the vendor’s word bubble, he realized he had no idea how to spell ‘dachshund’, so he just wrote ‘hot dogs’ down and coined the term overnight! Unfortunately the comic has never resurfaced.
Get prepared to celebrate Hot Dog Day tomorrow with hot dog bars so you can make your dogs up Chicago style, bacon-wrapped with blue cheese, with chili, or anything else you can think of. Happy Hot Dog Day and, as always, thanks for reading!