Birth of the Hamburger
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Birth of the Hamburger

National Birth of the Burger Day Graphic
September 18th is “National Birth of the Burger Day." The day commemorates the invention of the hamburger sandwich that took place during the 1885 Erie County Fair by Frank and Charles Menches of Canton, Ohio.

“Birth of the Hamburger in Hamburg” Canton, Ohio natives Frank and Charles Menches were food vendors at the 1885 Erie County Fair, also known as the Hamburg Fair. Legend has it that during the course of the Fair, the Menches ran out of their signature menu item of pork sausage sandwiches. Their local supplier, Hamburg butcher Andrew Klein, was reluctant to butcher more hogs during a period of unseasonable late summer heat and suggested to substitute the use of ground beef. The brothers fired some up, but both found it dry and bland. They added coffee, brown sugar and other ingredients to create a unique taste. The original sandwiches were sold with just ketchup and sliced onions. With new found success with their beef sandwich, they christened it the “hamburger” after the Erie County Fair’s home town of Hamburg, New York.

Why September 18th? Until the early 1920s, the Erie County Fair was held mid to late September or as late as early October to celebrate the agricultural harvest. The 1885 Erie County Fair, the event that saw the invention of the hamburger, was held September 16th-18th, 1885.

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Photo of Frank and Charles Menches
The inventors of the hamburger at the 1885 Erie County Fair: Frank Menches ( July 16, 1865 - Oct 4, 1951) and Charles Menches ( June 10, 1859 - Dec. 4, 1931)
Photo of Steven Walters, Tom Moses and Marty Biniasz
The Erie County Fair's Marty Biniasz accepts official "National Birth of the Burger Day" proclamations from Town of Hamburg Supervisor Steven Walters and Town of Hamburg Mayor Tom Moses on Monday, September 18, 2017.
Photo of ECAS President Earl W. Henry and Secretary Paul C. Laing.
Enjoying a hamburger in front of the 1885 Octagon Building circa 1980. ECAS President Earl W. Henry and Secretary Paul C. Laing.
Photo of burgers with birthday candles
The inaugural "National Birth of the Burger Day" was celebrated on Monday, September 18, 2018. This included the presentation of an oversized hamburger prepared by the culinary staff of Hamburg Gaming.
Newspaper article on the Birth of the Burger
The Celebration of the inaugural National Birth of the Burger Day was celebrated by many of our media partners, click on their logo for the story..
News 4 Logo
WKBW Channel 7 Logo
Birth of the burger day graphic
September 18th is National Birth of a Burger Day! The day commemorates the invention of the hamburger sandwich that took place during the 1885 Erie County Fair by Frank and Charles Menches of Canton, Ohio.
This week visit our restaurant friends in Hamburg for their specialty hamburger they have created specifically for the Great Hamburger Cook Off running September 18-22, 2018.

Butera's Craft Beer & Craft Pizza - 32 Main Street
Coffee dry-rubbed burger with house made coffee porter BBQ sauce, coffee porter caramelized onions, fresh mozzarella on a house made roll

Juicy Burger Bar - 1 Buffalo Street
The Notorious house blend burger, fresh grilled tomato, 3 cheese stuffing, sautéed banana peppers on a brioche bun

Coyote Cafe Mexican Cuisine - 36 Main Street
Juan Monster Cheeseburger Burrito Seasoned beef with lettuce, tomato, onions & Mexican queso fresco topped off with jalapeno aioli

Mason's Grille 52 - 52 Main Street
Irish Stout Burger Char-grilled half pound Black Angus burger smothered with slow simmered Murphy's Stout onions, Irish Cheddar & applewood smoked bacon on a toasted Costanzo Kaiser roll accompanied by crisp lettuce and ripe tomato

Craft & Cork Gastropub - 174 Buffalo Street
House made burger with beet green kimchee, soy-cured bacon, grilled pickles, sriracha aioli & white cheddar on a steamed bun

Master's Barbecue Company - 43 Buffalo Street
Beef & Brisket Burger with bacon bourbon marmalade and smoked blue cheese on a sesame seed bun

To vote for the People’s Favorite, circle one & drop off
in the ballot box at the Hamburg Palace Theatre (31 Buffalo Street) on Saturday, 9/22 from noon to 6 PM
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