I mean, seriously, as a life-long American (that might change if the current President gets re-elected), hotdogs are as American as baseball, apple pie and hot-rods. Ironically, hotdogs are an imported culture. And, many attribute the Germans and the town of Frankfurt for modern-day hotdog origins (historians believe the hot dog’s true origins can be traced back to the Roman Empire). But the hotdog only went viral after a Jewish immigrant from Poland named Nathan Handwerker in 1916 sold his dogs for half the price of his competitor’s ($.05ea) and customers bombarded his hotdog stand at Coney Island. Nathan put his competition out of business and Nathan’s Famous was born.
Fast-forward twenty years, a Bavarian by the name of Oscar F. Mayer came up with a creative marketing plan for his meat processing plant in Madison, Wisconsin. During the height of the Great Depression, he created the first ever WIENERMOBILE. It was driven by “Little Oscar” and went around parades, grocery store openings and even hospitals!
In 1986, after nine years off the road, the WIENERMOBILE was brought back out for a 50th birthday celebration. Huge crowds of people showed up for its appearance. Cards and letters came pouring in requesting to see the famed two-ton hot dog. A decision was made then to build a new fleet and start touring again. In 1988, six new 23-foot-long fiberglass WIENERMOBILES began touring the U.S., fully equipped with microwave ovens, refrigerators, cell phones, and stereo systems that played 21 different versions of the iconic “OSCARMAYER” Wiener Jingle.