Arthur D. Ebinger, bakery owner

Arthur D. Ebinger was the president of the Ebinger Baking Company, a company he formed with his brothers in the early part of the 1900s. The company, which ceased operations in 1972, had been a distributor of cakes and breads to thousands of customers in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Nassau and Suffolk Counties.

Mr. Ebinger was born in Manhattan in 1889. His family moved to Brooklyn a few years later and his father opened a small bakery there. Mr. Ebinger went to Chicago, where he studied at the School of Milling and Baking and then returned to Brooklyn to help establish the company that bore the family name.

Ebinger’s bakery was famous for its Blackout Cake. It was a dark chocolate layer cake bearing chocolate pudding inside and out, and crowned with chocolate cake crumbs. Though the company disappeared in 1972, the blackout cake survives with some saying they have the original Ebinger recipe. The cake received its name some time in the early 20th century when the signature “chocolate fudge cake” began to be called Blackout Cake by its more patriotic customers, in honor of the blackout drills performed by the Civilian Defense Corps during World War II. When the Navy sent its ships to sea from the Brooklyn Navy Yard, all city lights were turned off and windows were covered with black material, lest enemy planes spot the battle-bound vessels.

 

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NYC tour guide -- licensed and starred with Dept of Commerce

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