Skip to main content

See the Original Bagel-Making Machine at the County Museum

Sketch of original bagel-making machine

Hurleyville, NY – Hurleyville’s own Louis Wichinsky once adopted a 1980 Volkswagen Rabbit pickup truck to run on vegetable oil. Sometimes he’d even use soybean oil. (A red toggle switch on the dash changed the fuel over.)

But it was back in 1942, when he was stationed in London with the U.S. Army Air Force, that he hit upon what’s considered his greatest invention. He was spending the Jewish holidays with two brothers who owned a bakery. One of them, Sam Wolinsky, put a challenge before him: “Louis, you Yanks can do anything. How come you can’t build a bagel machine?'”

Louis set to work proving to the world he could do it. And finally, after years of tinkering, he created a machine that turned out 600 dozen bagels an hour!

Now if you’re wondering what happened to this remarkable machine, you are in luck – it is currently on display in Hurleyville at the Sullivan County Museum! And if you are wondering if it still makes bagels? Well, you’ll just have to come to the Museum (265 Main Street) to find out!

In anticipation of National Bagel Day later in January, the Frederick Cook Society invites you to join them on Sunday, January 14, from 2-4 p.m., at the County Museum to “ring” in the new year with bagels, coffee and baked goods! You can tour the exhibitions and listen to live music with Little Sparrow, featuring special guests Henry Simon and Jeff Anderson.

Admission is free, though donations, as always, are welcome.

For more information, call 845-434-8044 or visit the Cook Society Facebook page at