Day House

Geoffroy Hall

Floor Plans

Rooms 5305-5343

House Details

Floor #: 5 East
Gender: Female
Capacity: 55
Room #s: 5305-5343
A/C: Yes
Bed Type: Lofted
Floor Type: Solid Surface
Room Types: Double
Room Size: 11' 3" x 16' 2"
Window Size: 4' wide x 5' tall
Ceiling Height: 9'

House History

Mildred “Millie” Day (’28 home ec), created recipe for Rice Krispies Treats. The woman behind the confectionery delight was born Harriet Mildred Ghrist (a German name, rhymes with diced) on Sept. 24, 1903. Harriet Mildred wasn’t too fond of the aunt for whom she was named, so at a young age chose to go by Mildred H. and was called Millie. By the time Millie was a young teen, the Ghrists had moved to Ames, where Charles Ghrist took a custodial job at Iowa State College. Millie later enrolled at Iowa State, majoring in home economics. To earn money, she worked part time doing research for a professor in the school’s genetics department, She wrote for a campus publication called the Green Gander and belonged to a professional home economics organization. Even before receiving her diploma in 1928, Millie had lined up a job at the Kellogg’s cereal company in Battle Creek, Mich. Rippie says the company sent a woman to Ames to interview Millie, and was impressed by her table manners and home life. At Kellogg’s, Day tested recipes in the company’s large kitchens, and later was sent across the country, via train, to conduct cooking schools for Kellogg’s customers in about 38 states. Many sources say that in 1939 — although Rippie believes it was years earlier — Day and co-worker Malitta Jensen created the Rice Krispies Treat. About six months later, Kellogg’s received an inquiry from a Camp Fire girls organization in the Kansas City area, pleading for ideas for a fundraiser. Kellogg’s decided to test-try what it initially called “marshmallow squares,” and put Day on a train for Kansas City. Day set up a temporary kitchen and and proceeded to make batch after batch of the treats for the youngsters to sell door to door. Millie took part in another “first” during her years with Kellogg’s: She served perhaps the very first airline meal. It was to a small group of magazine food editors invited to Battle Creek and taken on a short excursion flight aboard a Ford Tri-Star airplane, with Day on board to keep the prepared meals warm. Millie Day later moved to Minneapolis to work at the Pillsbury Company. Millie died on June 9, 1996. She was 92. Iowa State honored Day’s memory during its Veishea celebration in April 2001 by creating a gigantic Rice Krispies Treat that weighed 2,480 pounds and was created from 818 pounds of Rice Krispies, 1,466 pounds of marshmallows and 217 pounds of butter.