Something for everyone and the best you've ever had.
The Legendary Neff Haus Ice Cream Shop is located in the National Historic District of Harmony, Pennsylvania, in an original brick and timber-frame Harmonite home built in 1807 for Jacob and Maria Neff. We are open seasonally from April thru September and serve one-of-a-kind and creative desserts along with traditional treats such as cones, bowls, and milkshakes. Boasting over 23 soft serve flavors, it is a cone and milkshake lover’s paradise. The Legendary Neff Haus Ice Cream Shop is famously known for our big scoops of edible cookie dough on top of our delicious soft serve, our gooey, melted edible cookie dough over soft serve, and our one-of-a-kind fluffy and rich Neff Haus Cloud dessert topping over soft serve.
Neff Haus History
The Harmony Society built Neff Haus in 1807 for Jacob and Maria Neff. Jacob Neff was instrumental in helping Father George Rapp secure funding for the Harmony Society. Neff loaned the Harmonists funds in 1806, interest-free, which helped start the various Harmony Society industries. Neff and his wife joined the Harmonists in 1808, and he was responsible for securing new members of the Society, usually widowed women with children. Neff put all of his money and property into the common stock of the Society, as did everyone he recruited.
The Neff Haus originally consisted of the two-story brick portion of the building, and each floor was one large room. Access to the top floor was via a very steep, turned staircase called a "winder," which was common in all Harmonist homes. The Harmonists would have painted the exterior brick with milk paint to stop wind-driven rain from being absorbed by the soft clay bricks, which can each hold one-and-a-half cups of water. Harmonist craftsmen made the bricks with clay and sand excavated from the Connoquenessing Creek. The clay and sand mixture was hand-placed into brick molds, allowed to dry, stacked into a giant igloo shape, and then set ablaze for five days and nights. The building is three bricks thick, and the interior floors are timber-framed, which was the typical construction method of the time.
There was a great fire at the Neff Haus circa 1880, which burnt the roof off and destroyed the brick gables. The wooden rear addition was added during the reconstruction, and like the main house, it consisted of one large room on each floor. The rear addition is shorter than the main house because they could only build the house as tall as the tallest trees they could find. Later, all four rooms were divided with plaster walls, resulting in smaller rooms and entranceways more akin to how we live today.
The building was purchased in 2019. Time had caused many structural issues. Over the next two years, the building was historically restored, with two different time periods preserved - the 1807 building showing Harmonist craftsmanship and the 1880 reconstruction. Inside, you can still see evidence of the great fire.