Ortolano, however, resolved to create a machine that would produce a fine, fluffy shaven snow, similar to that made with blocks of ice and a hand-plane ice shaver. His efforts were successful and his subsequent invention of a simple but ingenious machine transformed blocks of ice used in the household icebox into mounds of delicate snow-like flakes, unlike the crunchy ice crystals from that snow cone machine.
Because of this invention, Ortolano could rightfully be called the "father of the snowball," or at least its guardian, and the corner of Magazine and Delachaise streets, from which his business still operates, might be labeled as its birthplace. -New Orleans Magazine, 1980
Regulars buying snow balls at the Ortolano's grocery store became fascinated with George's invention. He soon began receiving requests for the machine from those who wanted to start their own businesses.
In 1948, Ortolano set about to improve his early wooden machine design for commercial use and production. Incorporating knowledge gained through his shipyard experience, he began development of a new model built of galvanized metal.
Incorporating knowledge gained through his shipyard experience, he developed new models built of galvanized metal, and later of stainless steel. His newly redesigned machine warranted a modernized distinct name, so the two words were combined and the letter “w” was removed. The birth of the New Orleans “SnoBall” evolved from his newly donned SnoWizard SnoBall machine. Unknowing to George at that time, he had given birth to a new industry that would gradually expand throughout the entire country and to other parts of the world.
The SnoWizard tradition continues today, with the geographic scope of SnoBall machine operators now flourishing nationwide and in numerous foreign countries in South America, Europe, the Mid-East and Australia.