Not only did the U.S. government give us the Internet, but it has posted a recipe for vanilla ice cream as well. It’s actually a photo of a recipe handwritten by Thomas Jefferson, one of the architects of that government, sometime in the 1780s. Click on “Holograph recipe, 1870s.”

A shopping site hosts the home pages of the White Mountain Freezer Co. Yeh, they’re trying to sell their machines but they also present a history of ice-cream making and even give credit to the true inventor of the ice cream freezer, who, ooops, didn’t bother to patent her invention 154 years ago. There’s also a lot of useful advice under “helpful hints” and plenty of recipes.

This page is part of a treasure chest of a site that seems te be called “Pioneer Life/Life in times gone by . . .” It’s a series of reminiscings by someone identified simply as “old one,” who, if this isn’t a concept site, seems to have spent her childhood watching mom and grandma spend all day preparing dinner. Here, “old one” remembers how dad used to chip 12 pounds of ice off a frozen pond while mom prepared a custard that, when dad returned, would be made into ice cream. The recipe for the custard, which looks as though it makes a very rich vanilla ice cream, is tagged on at the end of the story.

Essentially a store, but the wares — including coveted Italian-built ice cream freezers — are listed along side all the information you’ll ever need to . . .

In presenting some diligent research on the days of the soda fountain, the site’s author has woven together a collection of stories about the kind of ideas people had when the industrial revolution was young. Here are the ideas behind soda water, mass producing it, flavored soda, ice cream sodas, Eskimos Pies, Dairy Queen soft serve and so many other diet destroyers. There’s also a history of root beer and sarsaparilla, and even a list that comes with the warning: “These are recipes from old formulary guides, and some ingredients have since been outlawed by the FDA. E.g. cocaine is no longer an acceptable ingredient in soft drinks.”

This URL brings you to a page titled “Cooking with Chemistry,” a recipe for freezing ice cream with liquid nitrogen. Includes handling instructions so you won’t need medical attention afterward.

If you’re gonna go to all the trouble of making your own ice cream when there’s a convenience store around every corner, there’s one thing you should know: It’s impossible to buy hot fudge sauce in Japan; you’re gonna have to make that, too. This is a posting of a relatively easy recipe by someone with a lot of enthusiasm for it.