During the Great Depression, a young entrepreneur named Vernon Rudolph purchased a unique recipe for fluffy doughnuts. In 1937, he opened shop in Winston-Salem, and the Krispy Kreme Doughnut Corporation was born.
Initially, Rudolph only sold to grocery stores, but passersby kept begging to buy them hot. In order to sell them right off the glazer, Rudolph cut a hole in the bakery wall.
Following Rudolph’s death in 1973, the company’s new owners began using cheaper ingredients. Thankfully, franchisees banded together to buy back Krispy Kreme and go back to using the original 1937 recipe (and the original sign).
– ChrisButsch, The 100 Companies