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Excavating the South’s African American Food History 1
Introduction Nostalgia governs African Americans’ recollections of family meals and the food their relatives cooked. Lively
memories with accompanying recipes are a focus of recent cookbooks, such as Maya Angelou’s “Hallelujah! The Welcome Table: A Lifetime of Memories with Recipes” (Random House, 2004). Other less nostalgic studies by writers like Andrew Warnes, Caroline Rouse and Janet Hoskins highlight connections between food and conflicts over race, class, religion, and ethnicity. 2 Each way of considering food’s pivotal role speaks to who black people are, and each tells of social and cultural identities centered on special foods, dishes steeped today in black mythology. Yet, the complex realities of African American food history are difficult to document. Most African American cookbooks present themselves as drawing on long-standing southern traditions; they provide recipes for feather light biscuits, chicken and dumplings, boiled crab or fried shrimp, pork flavored beans, okra gumbo, rice in various guises, sweet potatoes, corn cooked numerous ways, pecan and lemon meringue pies, coconut and caramel cakes, banana pudding, peach and blackberry cobblers, and, of course,
divinity fudge. 3 Right away we find some incongruities.
rural black nineteenth-century families ate luxurious deserts frequently. Pies such as Hattie Townsend’s lemon meringue, one so good it “would make a rabbit hug a hound” were saved for special occasions. 4 Furthermore, many “traditional” recipes evolved well after the Civil War, including the varieties of meringue pies—orange, peach, apple, sugar--that are dominated by their lemon brethren nowadays. In fact, much of African
American food history lies in twentieth century realities. Of course, within the realm of collective memory, whether cooks prepare dishes conforming precisely to archetypes doesn’t matter. What is crucial is the connection between present and past, between ancestors and descendants. Complete and full replication is irrelevant. The tide turns on whether or not people believe the dishes are “authentic.” 5 To understand African American food history requires a separation of myth and reality. One has to consider not simply what people ate, but how people lived, plus both how and where they obtained food. In addition, there is the issue of “outside foods” (commercial items or foods from other ethnic groups) and their companions, choice and change. 6 As an archaeologist my attention is drawn to two dimensions of the food system: (a) the spaces in which people lived, worked, and ate, (b) the social relationships that guided
behavior. There also are patterns of power, dominance, and resistance to consider as well as the varied paths of social change. My perspective on these is ingredient oriented, and gives attention to small, informative facts that speak to space, place, and social action. Archaeologists look at changes in soil color to distinguish one stratum from another. They look at the presence and absence of specific objects or design motifs on pots. They consider how these were made to see how one change flowed into another, making something old into something new even as its maker tried to follow tradition. Archaeologists constantly confront individual imprints and ethnically driven derivations. A similar approach can be taken towards foodstuffs and recipes, especially those in southern cookbooks. Two overlapping patterns are present: Conspicuous abundance, exotic ingredients, specialized utensils, and intensive labor mark meals among the wealthy. Here, culinary display is essential. Simple ingredients and cooking techniques, scarcity and want, just a few tools, and a focus on having enough food distinguish meals within poor southern families. Essentially this is the difference between turtle soup and catfish stew, real coffee and peanut coffee. These differences created two food traditions that speak to social identity in much the way as would two artifact assemblages of similar age from two different cultures. 7
Within historical archaeology, details emerge with greater clarity and interpretations grow richer as the past moves closer to the present, as material fact can be meshed with historical text. Where the material record is fragmentary or hard to see and the historical narrative is unusually silent, detail fades away. Generic images appear. This is especially apparent whenever an archaeologist has to view the beliefs and behavior of an underclass through eyes of the elite. There are similar phases to researching African American foodways. Pre-Civil War texts occasionally give first names of plantation cooks, but surnames are missing and most remain anonymous. Their social identities lurk in the shadows. Yet, as ghostly as those people are, they still appear more clearly than the women who cooked in sharecroppers’ homes. The latter are normally unknown, unsung, and occupy silent places in the historical record. Their muteness emphasizes the replacement of one form of white power by another, equally repressive system after the Civil War, one in which, according to Sidney Mintz “the institutional fabric of slavery was lovingly preserved.” 8 These years, marked by social barriers and color lines, beginning after the Civil War and lasting into the twentieth century left scars on rural African American food customs as devastatingly as slavery did. Black landowners, in contrast to tenant farmers and the urban poor, had more opportunity to break
eating was entwined with almost every aspect of community life. Each section looks at domestic and commercial aspects of food. African traditions had to be incorporated into other cultures. and foodways afterwards. chefs. time constraints. the historical record provides more information and more names of African Americans cooks. up to about 1935.103 free of economic and social constraints. this essay is separated into two sections--foodways during slavery. However. In slave-owners’ eyes. their foodways show this. Because the war provides such a clear break. food was highly regulated. only income-producing work was viable. everyone joined in. Slaves adapted both European and Native American foods and cooking methods to African custom. Throughout. Black cooks learned to . and foodworkers. Foodways during Slavery Within African towns and villages. in the New World. By the early twentieth century. a slave’s choice of what to eat was minimal. or traditions of the black community. Getting a meal was the day’s daily work. the emphasis on tangible remains signals an archaeological perspective partnered with research in historical documents that is based on anthropology. The masters allocated food resources using a value system that cared not one whit for the rights.
fireside grilling. keeping it tender inside. The slaves’ phenomenal resourcefulness in overcoming hunger drew on a fierce tenacity. however. They applied traditional cooking methods: boiling and frying.104 prepare many new dishes. Corn and collards. green runner beans. potatoes. deer and possum. pokeweed. they continued to hunt and to gather. Use of specific ingredient. baking in ashes. persimmon. Plantation mistresses restricted access to certain . using earthen pits for roasting. Food preferences and cooking techniques showed the African lineage. 9 New vegetables--squash. steaming food wrapped in leaves. Slaves born in Africa and their descendants continued to create meals with a vegetarian base. and European greens--were easily prepared using familiar techniques. Whenever possible. The use of hot oil to fry food crisp on the outside. adding meats and flavoring to heighten taste. Counter maneuvers circumventing white dictates and opening alternate routes to foodstuffs prevailed. Cooks honed the technique to provide an array of deep fried foods from corn oysters to okra fritters and oyster puffs. but some obstacles were difficult to overcome. and plantain were just some of the foods Africans began to eat. the outcome was greater than anyone simply adding together the parts would see. came into play. This adaptation surpassed simple food substitution or reworked recipes. peppers. was often restricted by domineering masters.
currants. No slave could accumulate the ingredients needed for a meal if these included the wide range of staples used in plantation kitchens: salt. and roast potatoes) had an advantage. lack of time demanded that weekday meals be easily prepared. sugar ornaments and candy kisses. sugar. New Orleans fish. no slave could serve early morning juleps: glassfuls of “brandy. mackerel. nutmegs. cloves. potted English salmon. cinnamon. pickles. citrons. ginger. contain readily available ingredients. 12 On Saturday nights and Sundays.” 11 In the quarters. eggs and ham. preserved meats from Europe. And obviously. coffee. raisins. yeast. coffee. and be easy to serve and eat. African prepared vegetables.. awakening hungry tummies. On some plantations people . Slaves had little access to luxury ingredients such as almonds. cordials and champagne. bread. biscuits. vinegar. People could cart peas. big hominy. Foods that could be eaten by hand (e. lemon and vanilla flavoring. the aroma of food rose with smoke from outdoor fires. pulverized sugar. little hominy and cornmeal mush. cooks paired ingenuity with “cooking ahead”. pepper. claret.g. 10 Very few of the assorted foods offered at breakfast on Louisiana plantations was ever provided in the quarters: prawns. and bacon to the fields in buckets or pots and cook them over fires where they worked. wine. grilled fowl. and peppermint beneath an island of ice.105 foodstuffs. brandy. tea. gelatin. tea. cheese. beans.
at others one or more slaves were designated to cook for all. and chickens through the night. and hunting. quality. narrow. rabbits. planter. distinct activity areas offering separate food options. At holidays. tended the fire. i. political events. It is noteworthy that within the slave community. at some it was an individual task. butchered animals.. 13 (Figure 1 goes here) McKee’s model is focused on two aspects of the slaves’ food procurement: the locus of control (planter or slave) and whether or not the food activities were sanctioned.106 worked collectively to get a meal. Access to these and the foods therein varied as shown in a diagram designed by Larry McKee.e. and basted slowly roasting shoats. i. and the . and seasonal celebrations men also dug shallow. but it is harder to see the links between slave. distillation of hard liquor. animal-length trenches.. and nutritional components. Archaeologists can fairly easily analyze a set of faunal remains and determine quantity. The gender divisions and the prerogatives of rank in plantation life carved out different social niches each of which occupied its own physical space. gathered wood. food preparation was shared between men and women in ways not seen in white households. goats.e. There were male domains within food procurement and preparation: animal butchery.
but most obtained their food in the form of carefully distributed rations distributed on the basis of workers’ productivity. to sweets. to flour.107 larger society. formal gardens sometimes contained decorative fish ponds stocked with edible carp. Near the mansion. 14 Planters and their families gave apples. more molasses. coffee and tea. molasses. Access to liquor. and liquor as favors. Outbuildings . Sometimes it is useful to set aside nutritional value or flavor and look at food in terms of space. snippets of meat or even a handful of sweets. 15 Beef was normally allotted at Christmas when a whole animal was slaughtered and given to families in the quarters. stick candy. the pattern that emerges when slaves obtained food for themselves is more complex. 16) It was not an ethical system of food distribution. coffee. Within the big house (not shown by McKee) and its kitchen the household staff garnered a few amenities. Consider the places where food might be found on a plantation and the paths leading to them. (Some planters also butchered cattle and sheep in summer. extra cornmeal. brown sugar. McKee’s model shows a straightforward pattern of provision when foods were supplied by the planter. oranges. and domestic meats was highly regulated. There is a continuum that begins with interior domestic space (the white woman’s domain) shown in McKee’s model as the plantation kitchen. tea. There food was centrally processed.
and slaves took foodstuffs at their peril. smokehouse. Some planters could stand on their back porches. tension remained high. a granary. These were tempting places offering opportunities to grab fresh vegetables. quince. and nectarines.108 usually included. figs. cherries. Set somewhat apart. corn crib. a dairy. Here the master on a well-run plantation fully governed what was allowed and what was not. hen house. even an ice house or greenhouse. a storehouse. a spring house. also lay near the mansion house. peaches. where children stole eggs from bird nests and almost everyone took fresh fruit according to its season: apples. and dog kennels lay slightly further away. although tightly connected to the big house. besides the kitchen. Some planters also built a mill. Planters controlled or tried to control these back areas. The overall space immediately surrounding the big house was one of heightened awareness. and well. . 17 After emancipation. pears. lay the planter’s orchard. apricots. all were closely watched. plums. The kitchen gardens. look out over the quarter’s dwellings and watch families eating or socializing on their own porches. Specific outbuildings were often locked. The barnyard domain with its stable. supervised by the planter’s wife and tended by slaves. the orchard’s food resources disappeared since sharecroppers had neither space nor time to spend raising fruit trees. cow barn. pigpens.
outside the immediate vicinity of their own homes. and its game were white man’s property. They usually laid out these dwellings in regular fashion using European architectural forms. unimproved and under no one’s control. fenced pastures. one reached the planted fields. but still close by. some masters allowed slaves to raise livestock in this area. 18 Activities could be observed by any and all. Here. slaves used whatever they could find and took chances on whether or not to obey rules. among the woodlands. and rice paddies where slaves worked and gathered together to eat lunch. 19 Still. and . the land. The slave quarter homes and yards were thus situated in a border area between the mansion’s carefully ordered cultural space and its less orderly fringes. meadows. swamps. rivers and creeks which served as roads. Planters also placed slave housing within this zone. but most were not. Such spots offered freer access to food although masters never let slaves forget that they themselves. In coastal areas. On all plantations the built landscape merged with natural land. the latter contained piers. People had little privacy in their work yards and adjacent garden plots. landing places. Slave narratives include some accounts of those few masters who were humane.109 Moving outward. As a special privilege meant to reward conformity. Wary men made themselves well acquainted with their neighbors’ habits and let this knowledge guide their own food search.
five to eight quarts for children. Annie Burton. 22 Basically. 23 Planters often doled out the coarsest flour—dredgings and shorts. especially in young children. children had parents and relatives among both groups with vested interests in making sure the youngsters were enculturated to Native American norms. slaves had few foodstuffs to work with. Alabama . The techniques they were taught and the training they received infused food collection and preparation within slave and maroon communities. and open bays. supplying but a monthly peck of rice or cornmeal for adolescents and adults. creeks. Many were stingy. black folk possessed a modicum of independence. Some planters fed children like animals: a little bit of bread in the morning. Skeletal analysis reveals malnutrition. Dinner arrived in a huge wooden trough and consisted of greens or bones or corn bread in buttermilk.” 21 Foraging in these freer zones remained an important part of daily life within rural black communities long after slavery ended. 20 A former Carolina slave pointed out that a smart man “et a heap o’ possums an’ coons der bein’ plenty o’ dem an’ rabbits and squirrels. 24 Children ate by hand or scooped up food with oyster or mussel shells. of Clayton. marshes. Here the networks they forged with Native Americans provided additional knowledge of the terrain and its resources. Families came into being that included both black and Indian.110 forests. nothing at noon.
[slaves] received a little molasses and salt meat.” He continued. and often the dogs and the ducks and the peafowl [guinea hen] had a dip in it. “On this they lived.” 25 Archaeology at slave quarter sites yields evidence of substandard rations supporting the documentary record and its accounts of the slaves’ dismal situation. it took looking out for one’s interests.) When it came to parsing out butchered meat on plantations. “When the hardest work was required. As one observer wrote.111 remembered it vividly: “this bowl served for about fifteen children. but they freely expanded and contracted their food intake.” 27 A planter’s power reached into the heart of his slaves’ homes and lives. Throughout slavery. .” 26 It took tenacity to survive. as McKee observes “had achieved a kind of independence. anyone who built a workable food procurement strategy. and spoke to the smallest details. just as with other foodstuffs. 28 Blacks received the head. Take the Georgia and South Carolina rice coast as an example: Once a week Sea Island planters supplied either a peck of corn or a bushel of sweet potatoes. planters gave slaves the meats they thought least desirable. once a month they handed out a quart of salt. and controlled their private life. (Poor whites across the south might not have had much to eat either. who rarely went hungry and had a choice of food.
and children would ease hunger any way they could. Lamb went into the plantation ovens. and sometimes the heart. tripe. fried brains and eggs. families gradually built up distinctive ways of cooking that set each piece of anatomy apart. slaves stole hogs and sheep. kidney. women. tripe stew. turnips. or pickled pig’s feet and ears. sugar cane. necks. simmered chitterlings. Small children snatched chicken feet and biscuits away from dogs. 29 Slaves improvised the use of fat and meat from different parts of swine or cattle.112 innards such as intestines. livers and lights. and maw salad as well as baked. or feet. usually from the ends of rows. goat was grilled in the quarters. turning less desirable pieces into notable dishes. gizzards and gravy. Slaves quickly . pumpkins. Even poultry could be divided so that slaves got only innards. They took corn. fried. gizzards. 31 Singly or in groups. and virtually anything that grew. 30 The lack of food was egregious. the inhumanity staggering. Cookbook writers offer evidence of this in separate recipes for pig’s tails. turkeys. neck bones and rice. and surreptitiously roasted oxen and fattening swine. fatback. They milked cows at night. chickens. and that men. Surely planters knew that hungry men would steal. Inadequate rations were a tacit license for theft. and from other unobtrusive places. and geese. liver or ribs. They taught their children what these were. cabbage. potatoes. There were special recipes for each part of various animals.
Adults also took rice saved for seed. chickens. . 32 Archaeological assemblages indicate adults stole preserved foods such as hams. and brought home stray turtles.113 mastered scrounging. everything edible. oysters. a way to demonstrate superiority over one’s peers and one’s slaves. flour. they too could sell goods at market. Even though hunting was a mechanism of white male competition. sometimes taking the platter too. eggs. or shrimp. often brought pleasure. both planter and slave honored this silent agreement. There was an unspoken assumption behind this. in fact. searched for quail eggs. Men hunted and women learned to fish. meal. Theft. picked fruit and nuts. scavenging for food and hiding the evidence. adaptive maneuver. 35 Some families began to raise a few animals because like poor whites. Other canny slaves gifted planters with fresh fish. and feed (i. Children gathered greens and berries. 33 A northern observer concluded. “Corn.e. an essential. Both men and women planted vegetable gardens for family use and for market.. a means of male bonding. on street corners or door to door. You let me hunt and fish for my family and I will keep bringing to your door that which you can’t get by yourself. The responsibility to acquire food crossed all age and gender lines.” 34 Families ate many wild foods. corn) from horse and mule troughs. became legitimate plunder for the Negroes when the rations furnished them were scanty. and keep the cash.
The animal bones archaeologists recover at slave cabins do not say much about decision making. but they don’t say much about how the meat was cooked.114 Slaves ate from hunger. 38 Animal bones on the other hand tell us what was eaten (horse. gendered behavior. but these speak to the development of better varieties (as denoted by the number of rows and size of cobs) and not to corn’s role in a recipe. leaving no trace although written records tell us slaves drank. and with little opportunity to select their own food. real coffee (rarely). sheep. for nourishment. patronage. corn whiskey. although sturdy fruit pits and hard nut shells may endure. risk avoidance. cottonseed tea. Neither butter beans nor field peas survive. dandelion wine. Roasted sweet potatoes vanish without trace below ground as do greens. persimmon wine. one can tell . They used whatever was available. fruits. grape wine. and buttermilk. beverages go by the board. 36 Occasionally archaeologists recover corn cobs. among other beverages. Yes. dewberry wine. apple cider. Plant remains decompose quickly in the soil. whether it was nourishing. or cow). if the cut was choice (a chop. peanut coffee. 37 The archaeological record for meals among any group of individuals who depend primarily on vegetable protein is lean. or food preference. The remains decompose. and vegetables. elderberry wine. a t-bone steak) or taken from a young or old animal. So the archaeological record is more informative about meat than about herbs. parched corn coffee.
42 One discovers more by mining slave narratives. but their content is based on recollections whose focus is the pleasure of eating and not the specifics of food preparation.. from pork ribs to pig’s feet. with some exceptions. slave cooking exists only in imagination unless it was observed and recorded by those who were able to read and write and had the time to do so (e. okra a . But confidence in and praise of a cook’s skill did not insure she got credit for her recipes. but overall the coverage is scanty. raised by the slave. Occasionally plantation mistresses and urban white women acknowledged their cooks’ creations and contributions (e. One fact stands out in both black and white accounts: the best black cooks and superior chefs worked in slave owners’ own kitchens (i. documents are also silent on precisely how slaves cooked.g. from quail to wild duck.. Louis Hughe’s description of peach cobbler).. The truth is that.115 that a wide range of foods were eaten. hunted or stolen? As Larry McKee points out. 41 There are snippets of information in legal documents and fragments contained in a few autobiographies (e. whites).” 40 By and large. many white families believed their own cook’s skills topped all others. “a rib from a stolen pig looks no different from one from an animal distributed as rations.g.e. when were they cooked and how? Outside or inside? Which were liked best? Was the meat provided by the master.. in a relatively private space). WPA records are invaluable and insightful.g. 39 But.
g. 45 but people don’t dine on barbecue alone. as a masculine food provenance. and descriptive accounts. Barbecue as a celebratory food. Fancier dishes. (b) prepared for slave owners under white supervision. (c) chosen or ordered by a planter and his wife. however. were normally a cooperative venture between the slave cook and mistress. as part of a highly public performance. White mistresses claimed ownership of not only their cooks. What accompanied it? How was it apportioned? What special favors did a black barbecue master receive? Were barbecues. but of their cooks’ everyday creations.116 la Maulie). the information is not well rounded. 43 More often. as working texts. 44 She also had to release the more expensive ingredients from under lock and key. Louis Hughes’ description is well rounded and even includes the ingredients for sauce. is described in detail in a number of narratives. Documents give us the most information for foods that were (a) served to guests with conspicuous abundance. a plantation wife or daughter had to read aloud a recipe until her cooks mastered it. Since few slaves read. Ingredients.. supervised differently than beaten biscuits in the kitchen? Such questions are rarely answered in historical narratives. But during the period in question. are amplified in letters. diaries. as individual foodstuffs. they did not. wedding . Cookbooks. appear most clearly in legal documents and business records. (d) celebratory in type and form (e.
drew on favors. haggled and traded. fresh fruits. and wheat. shrimp. perhaps as much 150 lbs in 1999) one needs to know how rare it was for a black child to have sweets to understand the depth of feeling in Washington’s words. 70. and turtles. 47 Slaves had to do a day’s work before they could cook for themselves. figs. this was not possible. Where the task system prevailed. saltwater fish. berries. Irish potatoes. clams. and buyers. Where they toiled day long and into the night. 48 Black men and women both slave and free. barter. honey. . jellies. freshwater fish. etc. they might have time after work.). built personal networks. oysters. There is a culinary tension between extraordinary dishes and the everyday foods on which slaves depended. peanuts. There was very little to work with and people often used any extras to swap.4 pounds per person in 1801. Washington’s childhood memories of ginger cakes.” 46 With the continued rise in sugar consumption (8. we know significantly less about the latter. turkeys. resellers.117 cakes). rice. corn. so tempting and delicious that his thought of eating one was the “height of ambition. This tension can be seen in Booker T. or sell. peaches. geese—and a few animals. and melons. They worked face-toface. and perishable green vegetables. joined the market chain as suppliers. Spanish moss.06 in 1905. sweet potatoes. crabs. fowl. eggs. or (e) exchanged in reciprocal transactions (jams. They bought and sold small barnyard birds—chickens.
(While food purveyors were many. especially the role slave women held . Shopping for food was highly personal. it did not. When slaves’ (and free blacks’) commercial practices interfered with urban merchants’ profits.. this custom made good sense to slave owners. This legal wrangle reveals many aspects of southern life. In South Carolina. When it created scarcity. buying up all the produce before it reached the market and jacking up its price) and lower the rising cost of fresh food. They saw no reason they should have to shop for food when they owned other women who could more easily forge the market alliances that brought fresher foodstuffs into their kitchens. white men retaliated by rewriting laws to regulate how and when black families could sell foodstuffs.e. based on social relationships between buyer and seller. legislators wrote new laws for commerce in 1737 restricting black participation. The laws satisfied no one. These laws can be found throughout the South.) 50 City fathers continually and unsuccessfully tried to control the black food trade.118 When slaves sold market commodities to their masters at below market price. the legislation outraged white women accustomed to sending their household staff to market. Charleston women fought the law. Hence. 49 White merchants believed that placing city markets out of bounds to slaves would stop forestalling (i. grocery stores as we know them were non-existent. green grocers were few.
something that stood African Americans in good stead for some 300 years. They raised greens. the New World’s ecological systems were unfamiliar to African immigrants. almost instantaneously. They quickly learned to take advantage of this hemisphere’s resources. among others. The heritage also includes detailed knowledge of country terrain and its natural resources. These remain part of black ideology. quickly cooking foods and for those that cooked slowly without much supervision. to hunt. learning how to steal. Slaves came to highly value ingenuity. The produce also made its way into plantation kitchens and middle class homes. and other vegetables and sold the produce themselves or to market women who then resold it. In summary. gardening skills with New World and Old World plants. learning how to trade with white folks. that favored African foods slipped into culturally conservative homes. herbs. to gather. experience raising domestic livestock. Yes. They . a sustained social interaction with Native Americans. independence and self reliance. Their city sisters bought it at the instructions of their white owners to use in town mansions. This is one reason. They compiled a repertoire of recipes for finger-friendly. but Africans began.119 in food procurement and distribution. the heritage of slavery includes barbecue and malnutrition. to fish. creativity.
their hospitable distribution. Poor women found “hawking and carrying” to be one of the few avenues they had to support themselves and their families. . and many were deeply embedded in the commercial food domain.” 51 It was a New World reincarnation of ancient and informal trade networks built . and became well aware that sugar exemplified power and prestige. while other products sold in the streets included bread. might have been writing of the American south: “The biggest group [of market women] were those who sold fruit and vegetables. Slaves knew as well as planters did that in the southern oligarchy. They knew it wasn’t simply the foods a planter ate that set him apart. describing London in the 1850s. honed marketing and bargaining techniques. followed by fishwives and old clothes dealers. and the privilege of abundance. and tree squirrels. Peter Earle. baked puddings. rabbits. how they were shared among family and friends. pies. They took these values into freedom. tea. Black families acquired an intimate acquaintance with all phases of animal butchery and meat preparation. . butter and eggs. . Free blacks had situations quite different than those of slaves. Peddlers sold street food. food made the man. but the skill with which these were made and displayed. possums. sausages. They learned how to make meals from crop pests such as raccoons.120 learned how to bake fruit cobblers over open fires. the value of generosity.
urban blacks. slaves. Men fished for a living. baked bread. and gave opportunities to increasingly more free black folk to earn enough to buy homes or freedom for their relatives. sold fruit or vegetables from push carts. Savannah’s free women kept shops. and served food on street corners and in the market or in public dining places: taverns. catered. to peddling door to door. almost a dozen peddled small wares. baked and fried in portable forms. as we know them today. In all southern cities. sailors. baked pastries. raised sheep and cattle. soldiers. unmarried lodgers. and the public clientele--e. single travelers—contained few who stood high on the social ladder. and sold delicacies. (Tourism and working life. Others served in bars and hotels. Both men and women .. 54 Most families ate at home. found ways to get and use local foods which they either sold or. 52 City life offered many ways to make money within the food world. 53 Energetic women took to cooking at the market. lodging houses.121 on personal ties between rural providers and city suppliers. going one step further. and inns. transients. opened butcher shops. and free blacks.g. One kept an oyster house. especially the women. did not exist. prepared and sold sausage. slaves for hire.) Both men and women cooked. They supplied food to private households and in more public venues. taverns. Its heart lay in open markets and a growing number of free. By 1823.
by hiring her own time and that of her daughters first rented and then bought a sixteen room boarding house in Savannah. New Orleans. 55 A few of them grew wealthy as elite travelers fought to stay at their inns and hotels: In Charleston. Afro-Haitian) . Initially the food. 56 Black hoteliers were present in Newport. and lodging business did not generate large profits for very many families. owned by Afro Haitian Aphasia Merault. Rachel Brownfield. 57 The food trades taken up by Savannah’s free black community..122 ran cafés. ran the Carolina Coffee House and the Carolina Hotel. entertainment.e. restaurants. 58 Her name is one clue. Jehu Johnson ran the Jones Hotel (1815-1833). like those elsewhere. Susan Wilkie was in charge of the Farmers Hotel. one at the center of town. Black women also ran boarding houses. and included two confectionary shops. Eliza Lee. serving daily meals cooked by their own workers. known as an excellent black cook. and oyster houses. went from street vendor to shop owner. A small number gained prestige by participating in food related lines of work. for example. as with the names of other confectioners in places like Baltimore (Honore Jaffe) that the knowledge of candy making and ice cream production entered the black community in the 1790s and early 1800s with the flow of Dominican (i. and later in Savannah.
cakes. saw street vendors in Savannah working the crowds wherever and whenever people congregated: “many are seen with large trays on their heads. A major entryway was southern city streets. . . The intricacies of cooking with chocolate and vanilla also flowed into the South and then up the Mississippi from Caribbean islands and South American countries. Harriette Leiding recorded street calls of Charleston which would have been familiar in Savannah. nuts. peanut. [I] never have had such coffee since.” They arrived at Savannah’s market just before dawn. . Street food was an art unto itself. from the immense shining copper kettle of a great Creole mulatto woman.123 refugees from sugar plantations. Their goods ranged from fruit and produce to cooked rice. and so forth. and pecan pralines. Walt Whitman’s memories of New Orleans include “a large cup of delicious coffee with a biscuit . (The market opened at 5:00 .” 60 Women also made and sold delightful candies on New Orleans streets and squares: La Colie.” 59 By 1820 there were more than two dozen female hucksters crying their wares on Savannah’s streets. molasses. and sweetmeats. creamy pink. Emily Burke. sweetmeats and various kinds of drinks. Mais Tic-Tac. loaded with fruit. in 1840. . including Mexico. Candie Tire a la Melasse (based on molasses) plus white. . candies. A Charleston article of 1778 notes at least 64 women hawking “cakes. almond.
Their vigorous sales of cakes and apples on Savannah streets prompted the City Council to require badges by the 1790s. Many more black women than appear in city records were food vendors.” 62 One has to doubt their benevolence since a similar move was made against black males at a later time. apparently. Anything not sold had to be carted away or the market keeper took it. and some full time. . She concluded. if not more. women worked in individual stalls. shell fish and fin fish. “Here almost every eatable thing can be found. The women. well supplied. in an open shed with a brick floor. simply ignored the legislation. and kept the profit. fruit from cold climates and tropical fruits from the Caribbean. birds both wild and tame. (Figure 2 goes here) Here.124 AM and normally closed at 10:00 AM but remained open on Saturday evenings). Burke described the range of edibles: fresh vegetables. sold it cheap. some on a casual basis. The council claimed it was afraid the opportunity to hawk food would decrease the number of black women willing to nurse the ill during the yearly “sickly season.” 61 The Charleston and New Orleans markets were equally.
in 1823. Frances Carly. the black butchers returned in force. etc. 370 black candy makers lived inside or near the city (i. Energetic William Claghorn hired black and white workers alike. puddings. Pastry was a more inclusive term then. 63 Savannah’s professional female pastry cooks reached 15 in 1860 and black men also joined their ranks. Chatham County. tarts. there were five. Nancy Golding and Susan Jackson) were so successful they were able to purchase slaves and buy real estate. subsuming pies. in 1937. candies. 65 From the Revolution onward women led the commercial food trade..125 In 1823. stayed away from city market and took their trade to the streets. Nine . It included the mouth-watering fruitcakes made by one of these women and shipped overseas to fill English orders. In 1810 Savannah had one black butcher. cakes. 64 The numbers of small confectionaries continued to grow after the slavery era until. the City Council forbade any black man from apprenticing himself to a white butcher. giving jobs to immigrant German bakers who stocked his store with European styled baked goods. including fishermen and butchers. Georgia).e. Later. joined by a growing number of men. as the nineteenth century progressed. tea cakes. six black Savannah women made and sold pastry. About that time. 66 Prudent men such as Joshua Bourke and Adam Whitfield decided to interpret the law literally. Four of them (Phillis Hill.
F.126 were forced to work under a white butcher to provision the Confederate Army in the 1860s. and cutlets. informal. had prospered in the broad domain of commercial food. its addition of western beef. Savannah’s Jackson B. members of black communities in Chatham County. Foodways after Emancipation. African derived cooking techniques proved so irresistibly tempting that (as only one example) by 1878 cooks in Mobile. food peddlers. their foods and their cooking techniques made such an indelible impression on white southern families. Capt. opened his own shop in 1849 and began to sell choice cuts of meat: “steaks. one of Savannah’s oldest black neighborhoods. Jones had one of the largest butcher stalls in the city market while Josephine Stiles Jennings ran a combined meat and grocery store in Yamacraw. Alabama mainly frittered (deep fried in batter) supper’s vegetables. a mulatto. open-air markets. generation after generation. 1865-1935 African descendents. and small green grocers selling produce in small. people forgot the origins of this .” An 1894 article in the Savannah Tribune notes its continuous operation. as elsewhere. 68 Eventually. and that Sheftall had grown rich. Concurrently. as happens in mythic history. Sheftall. 67 From street vendors. F. chops. that whites pulled cooks and cooking techniques from the black world both before and after Emancipation.
in country fields and inside black kitchens. Side by side with this trend. but the effect was not beneficent.” 70 One can see in various other books a similar intent. but none of this had any influence on newly freed cooks. southern (white) housekeepers who “in this particular crisis” could no longer depend on “Mother’s [black] Cook. drawn from nostalgia. specific African. African fruits and vegetables became commonplace although knowledge of their origin was not. In practice. The white community twisted and crushed freedom at every opportunity. but it [was] the only place and time to be. inexperienced. in mythic history. romanticized and aggrandized. the style of cooking epitomized by the plantation kitchen was torn apart by the Civil War. The post war years (1865 onward) also left their mark on cooking in rural black communities. all evoking the essence of white southern country cooking.” 69 This held true on city streets.127 technique. yet it enduring rock solid. Grace Hale expressed the leitmotif of liberation: “Freedom may not be an easy place or time to be. Both Emancipation and technological advances increased the divide between country cooking and urban foods. . African-American and African-Native American cooking styles took precedence in preparing comfort foods. especially in rural areas. Annabelle Hill wrote a cookery book designed for the thousands of young.
Mammy Pleasant. 71 Those who had cooked in the big house took their skill for fancy cooking with them. to Detroit. and stayed closer to home. wood. while plantations had contained a wide range of food sources. Kansas City and Cleveland. much of the food they ate was sub-standard and minimally nourishing. in large cities. Thus. 74 The kitchen in a sharecropper’s home was never “an easy place to be. and in Montana homes (e. As was true in slavery. 73 Unless they worked for their former owners. numerous cateresses and railroad chefs). women were less mobile.128 With emancipation.g. Abby Fisher. They had few cooking utensils. Among the latter were African Americans who influenced the way other Americans ate on trains. sharecroppers lived in restricted spaces over which they had only a pinch of control. marketing fruit.” . and produce. sometimes using lard or soup cans to make cakes of assorted sizes. Rufus Estes. most black families were not welcome on a planter’s land. then they moved into Chicago and its suburbs. a smaller number went west during this first wave of northern migration. however. 72 Most. black people began new lives. some were able to find work cooking as domestics or in commercial establishments. Men started small businesses. Freedmen filled southern cities until these overflowed. remained in the south as share croppers or tenant farmers. sharecroppers obtained food from a narrower one.. Like plantation slaves.
ginger. . In rural black homes where overworked women sometimes didn’t have time to wash dishes. They catered to wealthier white farmers whose wives enjoyed the privilege of serving dishes. especially fancy cakes. bringing food home from the plantation kitchen had been a perquisite of their work. Some women found it easier to send their children or men to the market whenever they could. 77 Black customers had to wait until all white customers were served.129 Women who carried the knowledge of plantation cookery into freedom had simultaneously lost access to the resources it required. to adapt plantation cooking to what they had available. black and white alike. their new lives made its reproduction next to impossible. appliances. whittling. There was the lack of special ingredients and no money to buy them where they were available. There were barriers—time. Such restrictions forced women. women must have hungered for culinary continuity and ingredients such as sugar. what they brought to trade and took with them. not seen in black homes. clearly this source of foodstuffs was gone. part and parcel of their lives. At some stores. Black women found buying groceries a special hassle since men lounged around the stores. watching who came and went. 76 Storekeepers shattered culinary aspirations further because they had their own ideas about who should buy what and how much they should pay. butter. in both cases. gossiping. and other baking spices. and usually saw their orders set aside if a white customer appeared. utensils. 75 For many.
dates. in debt. tools. in some places. baker’s chocolate. bananas. Both diet and nutrition showed the effect of limited access to limited goods. and tobacco. turkeys. 79 People paid off debts by doing odd chores and trading with storekeepers such items as home-made candy. hens. mules. “those least able to buy their food [bought] the largest proportion. placing fancy baking on their side. shelter. and cabbage. peanuts. Then too. they circumvented the law and used any means at hand to keep black folk down. apples put many ingredients out of reach. 78 Since sharecroppers had little money in the bank or cash on hand. eggs. nuts. small fryers. clothing. It was a double blow when large landowners also owned local stores that were outside black neighborhoods. coffee. According to Howard Odum. rabbits. figs. Cooks without the newer utensils were at a further disadvantage. and subservient. 80 Deep-seated. they also charged outrageous prices. the cost of baking powder. Needing cheap labor to prosper. oranges.130 it was impossible to buy the ingredients to bake a cake if one were poor and black. Make no bones about it. unimaginable rural poverty affected black and white alike and fueled resentment among embittered former slave . and. storekeepers could keep families in debt by deducting from their earnings whatever the sharecroppers spent for seeds. peas. dependent. corn. These white men used intimidation to construct a racial divide. vanilla extract. food.
even some chickens. unheated. Photographs document the lack of growing space. Some tenant contracts further limited food options by banning livestock (excluding poultry). Survival took precedence. without kitchen cupboards or shelf . scraps that had to be shared with his dogs. The tight hold that landowners maintained on land use enabled them to force tenant families to plant field crops right up to their cabin doors. 81 This fact. insolence. small wooden cabins that were sparsely furnished. meat. and a garden. and whenever she didn’t do what he wanted as quickly as he wanted it done. Much of the food was scraps from his table. a pretty yard of flowers. A white landowner handed out a food allowance each week—molasses. Together with her family. and flour. combined with the demands of labor intensive agriculture. sugarcane. Forget that she was born circa 1910. laziness. she wasn’t free. 83 All that women in similar situations dreamed about was “a little home. and sweet potatoes that grew in the outermost field rows. 82 Meanwhile some who were free still felt enslaved. his kitchen slave. He whipped her for disobedience. Annette learned to help herself to the corn. made it almost impossible to keep substantial kitchen gardens. In Annette Coleman’s memories of her Georgia childhood. cornmeal. in essence.131 owners. 84 Many families lived in drafty. Annette was. thus forcing sharecroppers to purchase pork or other meats at high cost.
or running water and sanitary facilities. an' if I'm lucky. black. an' maybe a little stewed peaches or such for sweetin'. through cracks in the floor. sooty mouth . These were homes that had no gas or electric stoves. WPA oral histories tell of a barebones existence: "We usually eats butts meat an' rice for supper. .” Sweet potatoes roasted in a corner beneath mounded ash. Recorded recollections show that sharecroppers managed on very little.” It contained pot hooks holding “iron pots in the blaze.” 87 Women rose at dawn to prepare the fire while men gauged its heat by steam rising from pots. 85 According to Peter Daniel. was filled with logs of wood. Iron spiders. Cooks used whatever they could find to prepare a meal. All had tight fitting lids.132 space.” 86 Think of what it would be like to cook in the South Carolina home that Julia Peterkin’s described: “The chimney’s wide. . iceboxes or refrigerators. . without screened doors or screened. “A frying pan sat on live coals pulled out from the fire. Iron kettles. [there is] butt meat an' grits for the chilluns' breakfast. we has some sort o' vegetubbles. Pots with handles. . we don' worry bout no . . corn husks peered through another where ash cake cooked. glass windows. . A great fire licked at them. Slices of fat bacon sputtered and spit and curled around the edges. . “farmers joked that they could see the stars at night and watch the dogs and chickens run . . The sandy hearth held 3-legged pots. .
what was sold from the Jewish peddler’s wagons. One study of black tenant farms in Mississippi indicated one third had no cow and “one seventh [of the farmers] went a whole year without eating chicken or eggs. no lawn. molasses.” 88 Scratch cooking was the norm. 5 cents worth.133 midday meal. a recipe for Nickel Beans: “Take a nickel worth of bean. add half onion and half garlic. catfish stew. 90 Good food storage was merely a wish in cabins where chickens ate crumbs off floors. sausage. half rice. e. a hand to mouth existence. Recipes worked by approximation-portions expanded and contracted at will. fresh pork. Life was tough as Mason Crum’s details of Sea Island life reveal: flies all around. collards. half beans.” 89 Women baked food on stone hearths in winter and outdoors in summer. a side of meat. a diet of grits. no bath. butt meat. Mothers fed infants a little bit of their own foods—cornmeal mush.g. 5 cents worth. on average. 91 Beans . Cooks flavored dishes with bits of salt port. Home canning here was not an option. 500 pounds of cornmeal a year. Women used what was available in the local store. cabbage. and rarely (except when winter began). Families also took whatever nature provided. Southerners consumed. cook until done. regulating heat by shifting pots closer or further from the fire. and spareribs. and what they had on hand. sweet potatoes. fatback. no toilet.” Some recipes encoded the need to watch pennies in their titles.
Often. and we experienced hard times . a hoarding of nickels. a black cook in a white Kentucky home (c. To move past this form of peonage with enough money to buy land demanded ferocious saving. soda. Perishable fruits appeared seasonally for short bursts of time. From fall to spring families lived off root crops--turnips. 92 To us.134 could be dried for use year round. . Marcellus. gardeners reaped vegetables from spring to early fall. . Simpler recipes found in accounts of Sea Island cooks include batters made from nothing more than meal and water. Families “banked” these in back yards and root cellars. . eggs. and potatoes. salt. rutabagas. the ingredients are common and ordinary: cornmeal. but grew only a limited number. grow. Southern cookbooks offer recipes whose relevance to tenant family cooking is questionable. Sea Island women also mixed meal with cold water and then added hot water to make a parsimonious mush. or hunt. lard. that in turn required eating sparingly and/or depending solely on what one could gather. sharecropping had no food enhancing qualities and posed a number of cooking dilemmas. trap. even some of these ingredients would have been unavailable to poorer families. dimes. etc. People were clear about how they felt: “We was raised up just like cattle is. 93 In truth. 1900) had several recipes for breakfast breads. and pennies. grits.
their vegetable gardens could be any size a family chose.” 94 Tenant farmers became landowners by surviving on bare necessities. and cooking utensils. Gradually (from about 1890 to 1910) more black farmers became landowners. add a hog. and by sharing with less fortunate kin. oranges. lemons) or liquor had little left to buy land. Families became more self-sufficient and autonomous. Prudent families prided themselves on the ability to feed their households while spending as little as possible. Successful families eyed the popular Dixie Pink salmon. 95 Once a family owned its land. but didn’t buy it. who bought fresh fruits (bananas. it created a series of discreet spaces whose organization. Black landowners still had to deal with racist storekeepers but since their yard space was not in white hands. tools. An archaeologist looking for commercially produced material culture might conclude such families barely lived at all. They showed their thankfulness in church donations. church suppers. as one consequence families also had higher self esteem. using the most basic clothes. 96 People raised a larger variety of foodstuffs.135 [but] I rather get on with eating once a week on bread and water than be a slave with plenty. 97 They could plant fruit trees. a . as with Native American yards. appeared disorderly to many white observers. They could raise more than chickens. a mule. Shoppers who splurged on canned goods. at summer revivals.
When one elderly white woman described her pre World War II childhood home. and irrigated tiny rice fields. she spoke for countless families. and a wooden stove. one who owned land and one who did not and summarized the difference. in surrounding states. you would have to go outside to get the wood for the stove. . families put in indoor plumbing. although cost stayed a concern. The kitchen included a dishpan with water from the well. Fruits and vegetables comprised a larger percentage of farm products. Everyone in the tenant family worked: farming. To cook. we managed other ways. The federal government installed rural electric lines. both agricultural and extension agents touted new tools and techniques. iron skillets to cook with. Susan Holt compared two African American North Carolina families. watermelons. 98 Farm agents taught canning and encouraged decorative planting. . The outside looked like an old farmhouse. black and white. selling produce door-to-door. and sweet potato patches. okra. There was no electricity. The boards were unpainted. fig trees. cabinets containing food.” 99 The culture of rural poverty gradually yielded to technological advance during the 1940s. cooking for a white family. Their diet was . .136 cow. tomatoes. The yard was mostly dirt with scattered flowers. Soon farms boasted pecan trees. “The house was very small. Gardeners grew collards. or plant a flowering crape myrtle. Food limitation was voluntary and more limited in scope. We also had to chop it. cane fields.
his wife and children raised fruit. and music). closets filled with jars of home canned products meant the family could have pickles for dinner and jam on breakfast breads in summer and in winter. the landowner ran a drayage. She describes the care of chickens and guinea hens. moon. swapping seeds and ideas. red velvet cake) seem insubstantial cast against today’s food domain. and some baking pans. The differences (hoe cakes vs. The children sold berries. The complement of utensils would have grown to include an egg beater. biscuits. baking powder. plays. vegetables. This family. sharing farm labor and exchanging setting hens. She writes of planting when the sun. Her family’s concerns mirror those in other rural black communities: literacy. had “money in the bank. fruit cobbler vs. She recounts seasonal celebrations and a longer cycle of major events--births. and stars are auspicious. weddings. more bowls. Edna Lewis draws readers into such a black landowner’s world in Taste of Country Cooking. education.” 100 Their kitchen would have held equipment well above and beyond that the tenant family used. and livestock. and flour might reside on cupboard shelves beside the cornmeal. Lewis remembers different family members “preparing delicious foods” to honor each season. cupboards. burials. their mother took in laundry. A wood stove. expressive performance (poetry. Holt notes. drawing on sources from the . Nothing else was affordable. Baking soda. In contrast.137 little more than fatback and bread. but were immense for their time.
Across the South. Farm wives had good access to local fruits and vegetables.138 farm. Even possum deadfall was skinned and tossed in a pot. the store. Karo syrup. Alert hunters also brought home muskrat. differing degrees of prosperity created culinary variation. but saved up for expensive ingredients for special events. however. custard. Gradually. some had ice boxes and well water became the norm. cornbread and gravy. Her spring and early summer desert list--junket. were universally grown. canned ham and spam. Some vegetables. canned pineapple. men saw it as a special breakfast treat. 102 . California almonds. and bread pudding--show the rhythms of the seasons and the presence of fertile cows who abundantly supplied the dairy. dates and apricots. and Hellmann's Blue Ribbon Mayonnaise. Families bought large wood stoves on time. Families enjoyed roast possum served with sweet potatoes. and nature. 101 Its counterparts included cake stands and desert cups. tuna fish. blanc mange. beaver. the availability and lowering cost of commercial foods enabled women to try more exotic dishes using marshmallow fluff. A pressed glass butter dish that sat on the family table symbolized the above average material wealth of a landowner. Since family income was tied to farming and food production. men with their hunting dogs were commonly seen. and other game.
while peppergrass.139 Throughout the spring. walnuts. fruits. Apples flourished. pickled fruit or peach leather--were also common. and winter cress--as well as numerous summer berries (blueberries. lard. butternuts. summer. Preserved foods--bread and butter pickles. pokeweed. and cream. pulverized. or mutton. and chinquapins also dropped in the fall. pies and preserves. eggs. and Tennessee differed somewhat from those in the lowlands. blackberries) and other fruits. garlic. rural families (whether sharecroppers or land owners) also gathered wild plants. and fall. However. hickory nuts. and nuts. wild mustard. 103 More recipes called for beef. papaws. sifted. Women in Louisiana . chives. ground cherries. haws. pasturage was richer than along the Georgia coast. local foods in the upland Carolinas. and bottled provided one flavoring for food. wheat flour was readily available whereas rice flour was not. whortleberries. No matter where one went. and even maypops (Passiflora incarnata) for cobblers. Sassafras leaves dried. persimmons. dandelion. and young onions produced others. Kentucky. Forests and fields provided a variety of greens-lamb’s quarter. such as peaches. pecans. sorrel. North Carolinians found abundant blueberries. land owners usually had an abundance of bacon fat. raspberries. but could not grow bananas while bananas and oranges overflowed New Orleans fruit shops. watercress. lamb. butter. Scuppernong grapes were ready to pick in autumn.
growing season. Gardeners put in a second planting that additionally held ginger. endive. pork might take precedence over beef. sour oranges. bananas grew wild on Pecan Island. while men had a greater choice of fruit trees for their back yard orchards and arbors. peppers. onions. grapes. dates. Variations in flora and fauna. cashews. cucumbers. People in the uplands had a single shorter. roquette. rutabaga. grocers began to offer more fruits out of season from outside the region. mustard. beets. okra. and gave more complex flavors to regional dishes. cauliflower. bene plants [sesame]. radish. Individual emphases also varied: Rice. and pecans. sweet oranges. garlic. Effie Burn’s grandpa raised yellow and red plums. English peas. strawberries. filling winter gardens with white cabbage. in climate and weather created regional garden nuances. cress. potatoes. arrowroot. Along the Gulf coast and in the deep south. shallots. and melons. Yet. visible in cookbooks. lettuce. as railways grew quicker. 105 The accessibility of a wide range of fresh fruits and vegetables spurred a variety of different recipes. 104 Citrus farmers raised ten varieties of orange trees near New Orleans. pinders [peanuts]. corn. and celery. tomatoes. leeks. In Louisiana. hot breads over cold. families could grow two crops a year. parsley. . adding more efficient refrigeration. figs.140 could bake with home grown sugar cane. turnips. or wheat might dominate.
The unequal partnership between white housewives and black housekeepers was one nexus. “Momma would labor carefully over her selection. a rivalry that appeared at church dinners and quilting parties in the black communities too. because she knew but would never admit that she and all . but also needed dishes to serve in undeniably rivalrous table contests. as historians point out. Lancaster “competed to set the best table in town. a dollop of individualism. give it bit of folk wisdom. the kitchen in white middle class homes was contested terrain--one in which white women radiated racial superiority. Dori Sanders describes how this worked in her family. Dori’s mother and aunt shut themselves in the kitchen to experiment while the children played and wondered what new dish the two women were cooking. 106 Multiply this a thousand fold. Aunt Vestula.141 Changes in traditional African American foodways occurred first within cities and towns. and one can see how new food ways spread like ripples on a pond. a housekeeper near Charleston. where Mrs. The daily journeys of black domestic workers moving between black and white communities opened a path through which food habits and preferences flowed from one group to the other and back again. Mississippi. Diggs and Mrs. always boarded the train for home bearing bags of fancy foods and enticing ingredients.” 107 Maya Angelou gives a recipe for her grandmother’s Caramel Cake and explains. Craig Claiborne remembers his childhood in Sunflower. However.
or sweet potatoes. In small-town Georgia.142 the women were in hot competition . But often cooks did not control the menu or purchase the food. On such occasions. 109 Foods that were easy to pack came home on a regular basis in baskets and tin cans. Bessie’s snow pudding. 111 There were some cooks.g. 114 . it’s her own fault. like Rosa. none of the other cooks would even dare the Caramel Cake. Rosa cooked “turnip greens and cornbread. and Bessie’s Spanish cream. as one man said: “If the cook don’t take care of herself before she puts the food on the table. .” 112 Marcie Cohen Ferris provides many examples of black cooks introducing similar foods into southern Jewish homes. They are a sign of cooks who spread their culinary wings (e.” 110 A common assumption is that black cooks was in charge of the kitchens of their employers. Others took it in stride believing. grocers saw these orders were delivered. Bessie’s New York Yacht Club fish. 113 Recipes attributed to black cooks became more varied in urban texts by the turn of the century. who sometimes bought food and later were reimbursed. grocers sent black workmen with order books to white homes where wives wrote out their lists.” 108 Resourceful domestics used their employers to their own advantage. . Employers viewed this unspoken benefit in varied ways. black eyed peas. It made some very unhappy.
abundance. African American country cooking gained new depth as black women blended traditional European recipes into their home cooking and family rituals. This. black foodways were a product of change. At the local schools. assimilation and acculturation. Across the south. White households demanded these from each and every cook they hired. pieced together with simplicity. puddings and tarts. Sunday meals were embellished beyond necessity. Others took similar lessons at Hampton Institute and Tuskegee. Young women who entered historically black institutions such as Spelman College in Atlanta took classes in home economics. as they acquired more foodstuffs and new appliances. preserves. jellies. teachers taught cooking using simple textbooks published in northern cities containing northern . grew the base of foods that black families drew upon. A changing set of favorite dishes evolved. broad and expansive in others. and local flavor. Ice cream makers appeared at church picnics. brandies. and vinegars. Food choices gradually and steadily increased among land owning families and brought more “outside” foods into their homes.143 Throughout much of the nineteenth century. the food system was restricted in some ways. to jams. pies. fruit-based wines. Plantation kitchens had introduced African American families to cakes. along with what they produced on their own. The puny food rations during slavery led to an expansive use of edible wild foods in daily diet. although domestic service was not their goal.
had immense influence in their counties. 118 Home demonstration agents encouraged women to improve horticultural techniques as well as to try growing new and unfamiliar vegetables. Powell: “Through the tomato plant you will get into the home garden and by means of the canning you will get into the farm kitchen. This too. Progressive reformers reached out to families outside the schools. Some.144 recipes. a Georgia native who became a Home Demonstration Agent for the USDA. This too expanded and “whitened” the range of food selection. Sally Moore. set an example for other women in Hilly Branch and won awards. who grew 34 different vegetables in her North Carolina garden. 117 Without doubt one result was greater variety at the dinner table. 115 Seaman Knapp captured the philosophy in a 1911 letter to Susie V. Farm bureaus and home demonstration agents taught hygiene. Women in Beaufort County who learned how to build and then plant hotbeds and cold-frames further modified their home gardens in ways that also showed up the kitchen where vegetables now appeared early in season and out of season. and home gardening using venues such as girls clubs. food preservation. higher incomes and more independence for farm women. in expanding the range of foods available in each season. . sanitation. especially in the countryside. like Amelia Boynton Robinson. but rather improved health among rural families.” 116 The goal was not the revitalization of southern cuisine (although it certainly impacted it).
brought change to the dining table. Last but not least, women baked and brought their very best creations to summer revivals and church suppers thereby raising expectations throughout communities. Other forces acted upon black families. Northern publishers
of African American newspapers smuggled papers south using a network of Pullman Porters. These papers included columns on food and health that offered new dishes, ingredients, and methods. At
the same time, they raised warnings against unsightly street wagons and unsanitary eating places where “southern” food was served. Such cautions may have had more effect in the south than the north. 119 People moving out of the South during the Great Migration wanted their familiar homegrown cuisine once they arrived in the North or West. Migrant black women in California mourned the loss of familiar ingredients; families who had grown their own food or bought it in rural markets became shoppers. Enterprising men and women turned this to advantage by opening sidewalk barbecue stands and “chicken shacks.” Cafés, restaurants, grocery stores, and butcher shops in segregated neighborhoods catered to the newcomers. 120 The food domain in selected areas of northern and western cities (Chicago, Philadelphia, Newark, New York, Los Angeles, etc.) reverberated to a new rhythm. Black people living in northern cities kept their culinary memories alive by shopping for food on each return trip home. Their
relatives baked, preserved, canned, and saved favorite foods--the ones so dearly missed--and sent them north, packed in paper bags and suitcases. The southern touch was especially vibrant in the Harlem market; sweet ’tater pone sold by peddlers was particularly popular. It didn’t take long for men and women to start selling produce in Chicago and New York markets where, just as in the south, vendors sang to attract buyers. They sang to tout fish and greens: “Ah got string beans! Ah got cabbage! Ah got collard greens! Ah got um! Ah got um! . . . “Ah got anythin’ you’ need.” Canny men varied their cries, emphasizing the tune and adding more swing, drawing on the rhythm of old spirituals: “I caught shad, I
caught ‘em in the sun; I got shad, I caught just for fun.” Another might claim “Ah come fum down in New Orleans, Whar dey cook good vittles, Speshly greens.” Clyde Kingfisher Smith told a WPA interviewer, “Yes, I sing them different. I put the words to the tune, to fit the occasion.” 121 The cries changed with each product depending on whether clams, catfish, oysters, fish, or raw shrimp, blackberries, blueberries, or watermelons were for sale. Out in the hinterland, especially in the South, other men and women opened juke joints where bluesmen played while meat roasted over smoky fires (in the North, some speakeasies functioned in similar ways). Low country artist, Jonathan Green, recreates these in a series of paintings that draw on memories of his grandmother’s joint. Here was a place to talk, gossip, listen, and learn, to eat
and drink, to dance, or romance. Kathy Starr recounts the food her grandmother prepared, the daily meals for local laborers, the location and role of her grandmother’s joint in a Delta town. 122 She served one clientele during the day and another at night or on weekends. The mask of a juke joint, its curtain of ordinariness vanished when the sun went down, and local people knew it. They spoke of the “Devil Children” to be found there. Liquor, sometimes illegal, sometimes legal, sometimes just clear moonshine in a plain glass jar, graced the night. In an odd reversal of southern apartheid, throughout the first half of the twentieth century white men sneaked in quietly and cautiously to pick up food and liquor in plain paper bags. The grilled chicken, spare ribs, spicy pork, and whole range of smoky barbecued meats cooked so well in these places—and they still exist—are a continuum of male cooking that began on plantations. Steamboat cooks brought these foods up the rivers while railroad cooks and chefs took them across the prairies. Juke joints had urban alter egos and whether sited on an alley or by a cotton field, the down-home food was one focus; the music another. The cooks had southern roots; the food was simple yet complexly layered. Orich LaMoneda promoted his place in West Side Savannah as one where food was “strictly home cooked.” 123
Both prejudice and poverty forced pre- and post-Civil War African Americans to create a cohesive cooking tradition built with limited resources and “making do.” Before the Civil War, as we have seen, black slaves learned how to combine foods and cooking methods from their own African heritage with European and Native American traditions. Plain vs. fancy cooking marked the divide between slaves (and some free blacks) and the plantation elite and wealthy, white urban households. With emancipation, the boundaries that dictated what slaves should, could, and did eat were breached, yet the meals that black sharecroppers ate mirrored the slave diet. In contrast, black landowners enjoyed a steadily growing repertoire of foods while still make using of those familiar to both slaves and sharecroppers. Families sold and shared foodstuffs, added better stoves, learned to can and preserve. When they had little cash to spare, rural families drew on plants, birds, and animals from sea and shore. Many southerners also made game and wild fowl, fish, and shellfish part of their regular diet. Local fauna was a significant source of food for rural families until World War II, and southern cookbooks, black and white alike, reiterate this fact. But changing technologies and economic conditions permitted a new, wider range of choices. For example, as railway networks spread, small exotic luxuries like canned sardines entered the black community. Yet, racial prejudice still shaped eating patterns, dictating when and where one could
families became consumers. Their food exchanges built communal strength and. and in turn. court and business records. This review of the black side of southern food history illustrates how a rich culinary tradition was born out of necessity and innovation. which added sophistication to their own creations.149 eat. 124 Black cooks worked in white homes where they taught immigrant women how to cook southern vegetables and took home for themselves knowledge of different cuisines. slave narratives. when they exchanged a recipe for pecan pie or pound cake with a Jewish storeowner. the way that they fought against limiting conditions-- . They cooked in boarding houses and in commercial establishments. Women carried their culinary skill into wider arenas through church suppers. they made a crack in the barrier of segregation. In the cities. cookbooks. Many became formidable cooks with a talent for food fusion. They were both resourceful and experimental. and other sources. Women bought from curb markets or neighborhood stores and patronized Jewish grocers who stocked shelves with African Americans in mind. in restaurants. They became well acquainted with “outside” foods. By including information from archeological deposits. as caterers for large events and small. this essay has tried to provide a sense of the forces that acted upon Africans and African descendants. memoirs.
2003). 2004). This essay has benefited greatly from the advice and encouragement of Anne Bower. Elijah Muhammad “argued that southern cuisine was a tool used by whites to physically. 2. and intellectually weaken blacks” because of its role in racial identity. University of Maryland (Ann Arbor: Proquest Information and Learning. and inventiveness--to eat food of much greater variety than is often acknowledged. stealth. sweet potatoes and white potatoes are very cheaply raised foods. and two marvelous dissertations: Psyche Williams-Forson’s “’Building Houses out of Chicken Legs’: African American Women. and Big Momma’s Kreplach: Exploring Southern Jewish Foodways” (American Studies). 125 1. Gefilte Fish. Beaudry for providing some of the reference materials. commerce.150 through steadfastness. Hunger Overcome: Food and Resistance in Twentieth Century African American Literature. 2002). (Athens: University of Georgia Press. and Marcie Cohen Ferris’s “Matzah Ball Gumbo. I would also like to thank Mary C. Material Culture. According to Caroline Rouse and Janet Hoskins. George Washington University (Ann Arbor: Proquest Information and Learning. Goober Goo. They cite statements such as "Peas. comments by an anonymous reviewer. turnip greens. and the Powers of Self Definition” (American Studies). morally. Andrew Warnes. The Southern slave masters used them to . collard greens.
Tasting Food. sharecroppers. and Sunni Islam: Explorations at the Intersection of Consumption and Resistance. 1989. 3. Tasting Freedom: Excursions into Eating. defines outside food as that prepared either outside the home (commercially prepared) or foods not historically included in an ethnic cuisine (53). . Rebecca Sharpless’s “Traditional Summer Cooking: Not Gone with the Wind. 3 (2002): 10-15. Angelou. 1993). Soul Food. Ruth Abusch-Magder. 6. can be incorporated into a cuisine and lose their outside status. Power.. This partial list was inspired by Sheila Ferguson’s Soul Food: Classic Cuisine from the Deep South (London: George Weidenfeld & Nicoloson Ltd. and land owners.” 4.” Cultural Anthropology 19(2). 4.151 feed the slaves. over time.” Phi Kapa Phi Forum (Baton Rouge) no. Sidney Mintz.” See their “Purity. 5. and Psyche Williams-Forson’s dissertation. reprinted New York: Grove Press. these would be foods not eaten at ordinary meals or special occasions by African or African American slaves. in “Eating ‘Out’: Food and the boundaries of Jewish Community and Home in Germany and the United States.” Nashim 5(2002). May 2004: 226-250. and still advise the consumption of them. Note that outside foods. 1997). and the Past (Boston: Beacon Press. “Hallelujah!. In the context of this essay.
152 7. See E. 8. Culture.H. Zainabu Kpaka Kallon. some of which seem to be prototypes for African-American dishes made in the south (e. Sidney Mintz. William Howard Russell. 2004). “A Century of a Georgia Plantation” in Mississippi Valley Historical Review 16. A Chesapeake Family and Their Slaves (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1994). 9. 1989). . My Diary North and South (Boston: T. ed. Merton Coulter. An excellent example of archeological work on food is Maria . 298. (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press. Jr.. 196-208. Trying Theories: The Caribbean Region as Oikoumene” in Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute 2(1996). Burnham.P. “Enduring Substances. Jessica Harris. Anne Yentsch. 2002). 11. no.g. 337. and Afro-Virginian Identity” in Race & Archaeology Of Identity. 10. 1863).O. Iron Pots and Wooden Spoons (New York: Atheneum. Zainabu Kpaka Kallon provides contemporary recipes for a wide variety of African foods. gombondoh). 276. Zainabu’s African Cookbook with Food and Stories (New York: Citadel Press. Okra is called bondoh by the Mende.Franklin’s “The Archaeological Dimensions of Soul Food: Interpreting Race. These were the items needed for a mid-summer event on a Georgia plantation in 1855. 3 (1929). Charles Orser.
but no adults received molasses unless they had behaved well and remained healthy. Plowden C. Singleton. one pint of grits and one pint of salt during grits-time (October to April). and two quarts of rice. 4. See Mason Crum. pt.153 12. J. (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia. one pint of molasses. Larry McKee. 1972-79). Children received two quarts of potatoes in potato time. 221. originally . “Food Supply and Plantation Social Order: An Archaeological Perspective. 14. 13. Weston drew up an Overseer’s Contract for use on his South Carolina Lowcountry plantations in which he identified three cooks: one on the island. one on the mainland. The Christmas allowance for the children was 1½ lbs of fresh meat. Theresa A. They were to “cook cleanly and well. Rations for the children were half that provided to adults. Rawick (Westport. Genia Woodberry account in The American Slave: A Composite Autobiography. Gullah: Negro Life in the Carolina Sea Islands.” The child’s cook was to be particularly careful to insure no child ate anything considered unwholesome. too. ed. 1½ lbs of salt meat.” ed. am American”: Archaeological Studies of African American Life. and one for the children. Each Thursday the children got molasses. a half pint of small rice from April 1st to October 1st on Tuesdays and Fridays together with meat. “I. George P. 1999) 218-239. CT: Greenwood Press.
nectarines. 52. See Barbara Heath. Slaves would have eaten these as fresh fruit. and sugar by slaves while freedmens’ claims for lost property after the Civil War in the Low country also indicate a number had been able to purchase store goods. ed. Pearson (Boston: W. In plantation records. Clarke Co. molasses. Each variety tasted slightly different and ripened earlier or later than others. This is reported in Wendell Holmes Stephenson’s “A Quarter-Century of . shelled. James Mellon. “Slavery and Consumerism: A Case Study from Central Virginia” African American Archaeology Newsletter. 323. Bullwhip Days: The Slaves Remember (New York: Grove Press. 12 of pears. Capell listed the fruit trees in his Mississippi orchard: 40 varieties of apples-northern and southern--30 of peaches. 1906). 16. On the nearby Sea Islands. 1968). corn used for rations had to be husked. and then ground into meal using large log mortars and hand mills. Virginia store accounts also show purchases of rum. Eli J. 246-249. pp?. 2 each of apricots. ed. 15.154 published by Duke University Press in 1940 (New York: Negro Universities Press. 17. 1997. and grapes. 6 of plums. Elizabeth W. 4 of cherries. 310. Reported in Letters from Port Royal. brandy.B.
hickory. archaeologists have paid close attention to these spaces (Wilkie. seeds. (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press. Wilkie. See Laurie A. 41.” Historical Archaeology. “’Little Spots Allow’d Them’: Slave Garden Plots and Poultry Yards. to his slaves can be seen in an account of a slave who was hunting with his master’s son at Lebanon Plantation. Gibbs. 1840-1950. 2 20. Barbara J. in a surreptitious fashion. 2000 34(2): 38-55. Southern Hunting in Black and White (Princeton: Princeton University Press. for example.” Colonial Williamsburg Interpreter. and tubers from the live oak. 1876). 18. 20(4): 9-13. 1999. no. chinquapin. wild . In recent years. Take. See also Daniel Dennett’s Louisiana as It Is (New Orleans: Eureka Press.155 a Mississippi Plantation: Eli J. op. Native Americans. 2000). used buds.” The Mississippi Valley Historical Review 23. Heath and A Bennett. walnut. Creating Freedom: Material Culture and African American Identity at Oakley Plantation. for example. the family at Oakley Plantation whose porch faced the back of the Great House. 364. Capell of Pleasant Hill. 19. The suggestion that a plantation’s lands belonged to both planter and. “The Little Spots Allow’d them: the archaeological study of African American yards. Louisiana. 3 (1936). cit. Also see P. A. nuts.
native vegetables. The strength of the alliance between Indian and black gave rise to a Louisiana term. (Chapel Hill. mandrake. Bartram writes that the women gathered a wide range of wild. i. Indians. yaupon. Partridges lived in the pinelands. etc. cultivated others. 21. 1992) 118. 22. mesquite. grif. thistle. Some wild ducks preferred open water. while nocturnal . Julius Nelson in Rawick. Waselkov and Kathyrn E. persimmon.e. concentrating on nuts as fall progressed. rest of info? 144-46. identifying the mixed ethnicity (Gwendolyn Hall. red mulberry. They gathered greens from spring into fall. Africans in Colonial Louisiana: The Development of Afro-Creole Culture in the Eighteenth Century (Baton Rouge: Lousiana State University Press.. and Slaves in a Frontier Exchange Economy: the Lower Mississippi Valley. Deer from swamps provided venison. Holland Braund (eds).. Jr. Also see Daniel H. and quickly adopted peaches and watermelons as edibles (Gregory A. On Georgia’s Sea Islands different niches supplied different foods: August’s rice birds were picked off shrubbery lining the fields and made into pies. Settlers. prickly pear. William Bartram on the Southeastern Indians (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press.156 artichoke. redbud. University of North Carolina Press. Usner. others fed in the marsh as did coons and muskrats. 1995). 1992). doves hovered over pea fields.
27. Bass.E. Whitelaw Reid. CT: J.” 26. and shad were caught in creeks and rivers. rockfish. Shell banks of oysters lined the shores of bays whose waters were seined for fish. 1998). Ralph B. 94-95. 1967). Russell (361) gives the following. See Crum. & Marston. a gallon of corn meal to the bushel. May 1. McKee. crabs.. a quart of ash. and a good proportion of turnips or green food of any kind. Joyce Hansen and Gary McGowan. drum. Annie Burton. . After the War: a Southern Tour. New York: Harper Torchbacks. Concerning food in troughs. sheepshead. Mellon. Memories of Childhood’s Slavery Days (Boston: Ross Publishing Co. 38. Son. Gullah: Negro Life. 233. Breaking Silence: The Story of New York’s African Burial Ground (New York: Henry Holt. . and shrimp. from a set of printed directions for overseers: “Troughs of animal swill were prepared in a similar fashion: sound cotton seed. Low. 24. Plantation Slavery in Georgia 1933 (Cos Cob. 25. 1866. catfish. flounder. 1909). croaker. 23. Flanders. Breaking Ground. a handful of salt. Edwards. 1865 to May 1. thoroughly cooked. . even clover of peas .157 possum took to the woods instead. 1965). 1866 (London: S.
See Lettice Bryant’s Kentucky Housewife (Cincinnati: Shepard and Sternes. For centuries. 30. However. European farm families were noted for their penurious use of every usable piece from a slaughtered animal from head to toe. After the Civil Rights movement. A good example is Ruth Gaskin’s A Good Heart and a Light Hand (New York: Simon and Schuster. NJ: Carol Publishing Group. Rheinhart (Richmond. 2001). T. Poor white families ate many of the same dishes. Joanne Bowen. op. 1998) 93-94. 29.” The Archaeology of Eighteenth-Century Virginia. planters provided whole animals as provisions. 1841. Washington and recounted in Carolyn Tillery’s The African American Heritage Cookbook: Traditional Recipes and Remembrances from Alabama’s Renowned Tuskegee Institute (Secaucus. 87-130. 1968). Also see Kathy Starr’s The Soul of Southern Cooking (Jackson: University of Mississippi Press. cit. Applewood Books. VA: Spectrum Press). 1989). This practice is described by Booker T. Franklin. it is notable that cookbooks written by black authors before the Civil Rights movement contain far fewer . R. black food writers began to reach back to their roots and describe the hardscrabble foods of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. repr. “Foodways in the Eighteenth Century Chesapeake. Prior to the nineteenth century and a sea change in animal butchery.158 28. ed.
as a slave (New York: J. Alex Lichtenstein. and the Law. American Studies International 37 no. They burned chicken feathers and dumped the bones and guts of shad far out in rivers to escape detection. 31. who lived forty years in Maryland.. South Carolina and Georgia. rptd. “quan” to foods not included in rations. Poe’s “The Origins of Soul Food in Black Urban Identity: Chicago. Rufus Estes’s Good Things to Eat as Suggested by Rufus (R. 2003). 1837. 1 (1999): 4-33. Dover Publications.” Journal of Social History (1989): 413-440. 33. 2004). S. See Charles Ball. 43. Keene described . Mellon. 1940). “That Disposition to Theft with which they have Been Branded: Moral Economy. Lena Richard’s New Orleans Cookbook (Boston: Houghton Mifflin. Slave Management. Slavery in the United States: a narrative of the life and adventures of Charles Ball. it meant any dish prepared solely from un-rationed (appropriated) ingredients or from a blend of rations (rice) and non-rationed foodstuffs. See the detailed discussion Williams-Forson provides in Chapter 4 of her dissertation (124-172) or Tracy N. 1911 repr.g. Dover Publications. Estes: Chicago. and the 1948 Date with a Dish by Freda De Knight (New York: Hermitage Press). An ethnographic parallel exists: American POWS interned in Japanese concentration camps applied the term. Taylor. a black man.159 dishes using poor cuts of meat (e. Mineola NY. 32. 1915-1947.
” Gender and Society 9. cake with jelly filling. irrespective of gender. collard. ham gravy. 351. Jan Thompson interpreted it this way: the experience of joyful anticipation when mixing. fish. turnip greens. Devon: Prospect Books. Russell. no. If the iron utensils were deposited in the archaeological record.160 quanning as pleasurable. “We Got Our Way of Cooking Things: Women. and gather. Harlan Walker (Blackston. onions. taters.” in Food and the Memory: Proceedings of the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cooking 2000. if need be. “Prisoners of the Rising Sun: Food Memories of American POWs in the Far East during World War II. cooking “quan” was inexpressible. pot-liker. 35. An archaeologist might see fish bones and could recover chicken bones. Totnes. snap beans. It is a different case with Lucinda Williams’s succinct directions: . cabbage. catfish.5 (1995): 535-555. and Preservation of Cultural Identity among the Gullah. and. thrilling. and to know how to hunt. they would be the most visible. 36. Food. to be self sufficient. cornmeal. Parents and Gullah elders customarily teach children. She notes two utensils: an iron griddle and an iron pot (Mellon. See Josephine Beoku-Betts. ed. 34. 42). Anna Wright gives cursory directions for the foods slaves ate which include these ingredients: chicken. blackberry pie. flour. 2001).
cultivated fruit (melon and cherry). acorn. Lindsay Baker and Julie P. a variety of peas/beans (bean. Stephen Mrozowski and L. maybe all of dem. bedstraw and sedge. or de wild turkey meat. 37. Driscoll. Baker’s edited collection: The WPA Oklahoma Slave Narratives (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. and peanut). 1996). and de big turtle dat lay out on de bank!” See T. rye. grains (wheat.161 “bile de greens--all kinds of greens from out in de woods--and chip up de pork and deer meat. and native plants: blackberry. “Seeds of Learning: An Archaeobotanical Analysis of the Rich Neck Slave . squash. lima bean. 107-117. If they were smashed or broken open this is a clue that they had been used in soup/stew. pearl barley). These include corn. but there would be no reliable evidence they were cooked together. One of the few African American sites where charred seeds were found is the Rich Neck Slave Quarter. archaeologists place most weight on charred seeds in the belief that only these can be irrefutably associated with human activity. common bean. cow pea. in de big pot at de same time! Fish too. black walnut. honey locust. Archaeologists would be able to identify the bones from each animal. Because it is difficult to tell whether a seed has worked its way down in the soil by itself or whether earlier occupants of a site were responsible.
“British colonial subsistence strategies on the southeastern coastal plain. Larry McKee. by Dept. of Anthropology. Theresa Singleton (Orlando. Garrett . and Ted A.Georgia. Rathbun. 232. University of Florida. 1987). 1985). More focused studies. Williamsburg.” American Antiquity 63(4). ed. Camden County.” manuscript on file. 39. Extensive lists of faunal remains from southern plantations can be found in these three studies: William H. Tyson Gibbs.” The Archaeology of Slavery and Plantation Life. Dept. of the Navy. Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. 310-311. include: Brian W. “Power and Community: The Archaeology of Slavery at the Hermitage Plantation. FL: Academic Press. Mellon. 1998: 531-551. 35l. Kings Bay. Elizabeth Reitz and Nicholas Honnerkamp. Gainesville (Gainesville: University of Florida. submitted to Naval Sbmarine Base.162 Quarter. based on single sites. U. “The Archaeology of Slavery in North America. “Archaeological Evidence for Subsistence on Coastal Plantations. Department of Archaeological Research. Georgia. A broader overview is Theresa Singleton.” Annual Review of Anthropology 24(1995) 119-140. 40. Virginia. ed.” Historical Archaeology 17 (1983): 4-26. and Elizabeth Reitz. 38. Report of Investigation No 5. Historical Archaeology of Plantations at Kings Bay.. Thomas. Adams.S.
.g. The nuances in flavor and cooking techniques were not codified as they were in cookbooks. 1675 to 1775 (Virginia)” Ph. 41. “From houses to homes: An archaeological case study of household formation at the Utopia Slave Quarter. as spices dropped in price and more homes had ovens (albeit without good temperature gauges).. Nonnie’s cinnamon cake) and thus they wore auras of authenticity.163 Randall Fesler. Oral tradition substituted for literacy. University of Virginia (Ann Arbor: Proquest Information and Learning. 2004). Recipes were fluid entities. but their attributions were not (e. As temperature gauges became more reliable and oven heat more regulated.D. but their daughters. but it easily collapses time and makes change invisible. In the early nineteenth century it became illegal to teach a slave to read and write. modified the recipe. ca. Modifications to recipes in the Family Farmer Cookbook (Boston: Little Brown. as did great-granddaughters. but changes via the oral tradition cannot be unless recorded on tape or another medium. 1896) over its 13 editions and hundred-year history can be tracked. mothers taught daughters to cook one way. granddaughters again modified the recipes. When spices were expensive and ovens unavailable. The few who could do so were not apt to waste this talent by risking detection on topics as frivolous as how to bake a pie. dissertation. Think of it this way.
[cooks it] only a hour on Sunday. A layer of this crust was laid in the oven. For the peach cobbler. followed by a layer of sugar.” he continued. then a covering of pastry was laid over all and smoothed around with a knife. .164 42. rolled out like any pie crust. The warm. AL: New South Books. An Antebellum Household: Including the South Carolina Low Country Receipts and Remedies of Emily Wharton Sinkler (Columbia: University of South Carolina Press. 1979). brown-sugared fruit became a delicious pie-like concoction that remained in Hughes’ memory. only it was almost twice as thick. “the crust or pastry. 1996).” See Hughes’s Thirty Years a Slave: From Bondage to Freedom. Pp. for my cook goes to church and only gets back a little before 1 o’clock and I dine at 3. ed.” Archaeologists have . without spices or extra fruit flavoring (e.49 43. Louis Hughes described a July 4th barbecue where peach cobbler and apple dumplings were baked on a rotating basis in iron [Dutch] ovens over open fires. William Adams (Montgomery. Anne Sinkler Whaley Leclercq. A more typical example appears in an 1897 letter from Ida Matthews about fig pudding: “My cook says it is one of the easiest puddings to make and she often in winter gives it for Sunday as she prepares it on Saturday . . cranberry).g.. These large apple dumplings were plainly made. lemon. “was prepared in large earthen bowls. then a half peck of peaches poured in.
00. and how many. A comparison of illiteracy rates for whites and . Wilkie. Hannah Valentine. If you wish any preserved. Legislators throughout the South tried to stringently enforce the rule against teaching a slave to read or write as the century progressed. Many saw literate slaves as subversive agents rebelling against white domination. I should like to know what you would wish done with them. Still. and Savannah city councils paid particular attention to black literacy since it opened a lifeline to the broader world (Stamp. and see how profitable I can make them. 1838. (Special Collections Library. Charleston.165 tentatively identified Silvia Freeman as the cook and her monthly salary as $4. . . If you have no objection I will sell the balance. In cities such as Savannah. The currants and gooseberries look well. and are tolerably full of fruit. 100. Columbia. free blacks ran covert schools so urban cooks were more apt to be able to read a recipe than were those on plantations. If you do I will endeavor to do them as nicely as possible. . some did learn to read and write. 44. University of Virginia). “The strawberry vines are in full bloom. In a letter to Mary Campbell dated May 2. a house slave wrote. 177). and a promise a good crop of fruit. Please let me know if you would wish me to make any currant jelly. and if you would like me to bottle the gooseberries.
000. Mississippi: 1400 vs. MILWAUKEE:SOUTH SIDE PRINTING COMPANY 46.S.166 blacks in the South compiled using 1900 U. 360. . 1865 to 1940 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press). Booker T. like many poor white women. vol. 214. Robert Higgs. op. pointed out in 2002 that many blacks were very quiet about their abilities. 314. Louisiana: 18. 358. Mellon. claims that black literacy quickly rose after the Civil War. 177. much less write one.S. 1. 1977. Competition and Coercion: Blacks in the American Economy.000 (white). Washington. North Carolina: 600 vs. Census data (available on line from the Fisher Library at the University of Virginia) provides the following. could not read a cookbook. 2003). however. Identity (New York: Oxford University Press. South Carolina: 600 vs. Alabama: 2100 (black) vs. 284. Virginia: 7. from 10% in 1880 to 50% in 1900.000. 284.000 vs. Up From Slavery: An Autobiography (New York: Barnes and Noble. 338. 45. 11.” Ancestry Magazine 20(6)).000. Even so. 48-49 1897.000).000 vs. Georgia: 1300 vs.000.000. Sunny Nash. cit. Hughes. For a bibliography of African American cookbooks see Doris Witt’s Black Hunger: Food and the Politics of U. 221-28. 210. there remained a staggering number who. A local historian. 379. 1999). to the point that some wouldn’t reveal to census takers that they could read or write (“From Excavation to Oral History.
Winston remembered her children didn’t know “there were other parts of the chicken besides wings. Pierce & Company opened its first food store in Brookline. Refined Tastes: Sugar. 3. Thomas Cooper and David J. Economic Research Service. The Statutes at Large of South Carolina 10 vols. Mass.asp?f=specialty/sss -bb/. “When Gordonsville was the Chicken Capital of the World. McCord. Sugar and Sweetener Situation and Outlook Yearbook 2001. 50. 50. S. in 1831. May 2001.” Orange County Review 9 July 1970. Buying . 2002). while the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company (A & P) opened just before the Civil War (1859). 48. SC. Williams-Forson writes of Bella Winston.gov/publications/so/view. backs. 49. vol. and Consumers in Nineteenth-century America (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. eds. quoted in Williams-Forson. Chain stores appeared gradually.ers. 836-1873). following in her mother’s steps. and feet” until they were teenagers and old enough to move away from home. Also see Yentsch. Report accessible at http://www. who. 487-488. 245-246. United States Department of Agriculture. Grocery stores of the past bore little resemblance to commercial establishments of today. Mrs.167 47. Confectionary.usda. sold fried chicken across from a train station. Wendy Woloson. Report SSS-231. S. 194. Both began as “counter-service” stores with home delivery. (Columbia.
” Economic History Review 42. 51. with the latter the first major chain to offer self-service (1916). 52. 1788-1864 (Fayetteville: University of Arkansas Press. A similar practice existed in the Caribbean and across the South. . Black Savannah. more than doubling (3600) by 1850. based on census patterns observed elsewhere. Peter Earle. Safeway and Piggly Wiggly opened their doors around World War I.417).S.. For more information. Bureau of the Census. Savannah’s free black population was smaller: 632 in 1840 (of 5326 blacks).000 in the decade before the Civil War. It is likely.168 groceries for cash became an option early in the 1900s.net>. no.groceteria.069 to 15. 53. dropping to about 10. Johnson.000 in 1850. 1841.e. “London Female Labour Market. but was not initially popular. the free black population of Charleston was approximately 1500 individuals. 1996). 3 (1989): 341. that free black women outnumbered free black men. See Whittington B. By 1870. see David Gwynn’s “Did you bring bottles. 705 in 1860 (of 8. 13. The number in New Orleans grew from 1566 in 1805 to 4950 in 1810 (when 64% of the total city population was black) and reached 15. 1860.166).” online at <www. the black population was almost equal to that of the white (i. 1870. At the turn of the nineteenth century. 188) on purchases of slaves by Savannah’s free black community. U.
Johnson. widely known. 188.. 186. Socolow discusses this practice in the French Caribbean and there is no reason to think it did not operate in Savannah too. 54. and served excellent food that included luxuries unavailable at most commercial establishments. Nor was the practice limited to urban families. op cit). Women often purchased other women. 130-46 [Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. teaching them a trade. Also see Marina Wikramanayake’s A World of Shadow: The Free Black in Antebellum Charleston (New York: The Free Press. See herThe Women of Colonial Latin America. Macmillan Co. The hotel was well situated. 1927). Sometimes free blacks bought relatives who although technically not free were at liberty to behave as if they were. 2000]). 1973) and Mrs. Women.169 but it differed from white slave ownership. Consider Nagadoches Louisiana. Pease. . 1990). where Cane River Creoles owned plantations and slaves from the late eighteenth Century to 1865 (Hall. Nancy M. 157. Johnson. 55. Ladies. Jane H. pp. 188. St. & Wenches: Choice & Constraint in Antebellum Charleston & Boston (Charlotte: University of North Carolina Press. Julian Ravenel’s Charleston: the Place and the People (New York. 56. 54.
Emily Burke. Hoskins. Conrad. 70-71. 61.d. Jan. but they also included Germans and a number of Eastern . 1314). Charles L.170 57. Out of Yamacraw and Beyond: Discovering Black Savannah (Savannah: Gullah Press. Timothy J. 9-10. Reminiscences of Georgia (J.. South Carolina and American General Gazette. Reminiscences of Georgia in the 1840s [Savannah: Beehive Press. Johnson. 59. Street Cries of an Old Southern City (with music and illustrations) (Charleston. approximately 50% of Savannah’s white population was foreign born.M. 1887. Black Savannah. 64. Johnson. 62. “Spheres of Influence: Working White and Black Women in Savannah. February 19. New Orleans Picayune. Walt Whitman. SC: Daggett Printing Co. as Pleasure and Pain. VA: Hampton Institute. 1778. Susanna Delfino and Michele Gillespie (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press. Fitch. 16. 71.” in Neither Lady nor Slave: Working Women of the Old South. In the 1850s. primarily the immigrants came from Ireland. n. Quoted in Olwell (1996.). rptd. 63. Georgia Bryan Conrad (Hampton. 1927). 1850. 1978]). Lockley. 98). 16. 60. 25. 2002). p. Black Savannah. 27. 58. 106. Harriette Kershaw Leiding. eds. 2002).
sweet potatoes. Johnson. salsify. 66. 121. Women’s Work. 68. Black Savannah. 1999). 40. Making Whiteness: The Culture of Segregation in the South. 156-58. rice. See Johnson. 1995). Johnson. eggplant. 66. potatoes. Black Savannah. In Mobile. Black Savannah. Also see Johnson. okra. Black Savannah. . plantain. Annabelle P. 46. 212-213). 212-213). 67. 69. South. squash. Mobile. figs. corn. vegetables were treated to more than their share of frying: cauliflower. 57. Men’s Work: the Informal Slave Economies of Lowcountry Georgia (Athens: University of Georgia Press. Alabama).171 European Jews. Ibid. 12. Mrs.Grace Hale. 65. onions. Men’s Work: the Informal Slave Economies of Lowcountry Georgia (Athens: University of Georgia Press. 66 Betty Wood. 99-100 and Hoskins. parsnips. 66. 1890-1940 (New York: Vintage Books. Betty Wood. 69. 1995). Hill’s Practical Cookery and Receipt Book 1867 (Columbia: University of South Carolina. and tomatoes were either fried or frittered in at least 25% of the recipes (The Gulf City Cookbook compiled by the Ladies of the St. grits. Francis Street Methodist Episcopal Church. These numbers come from Hoskins. 70. Hill. quoted in Ferris. 1995). 69 . Women’s Work.
Rufus Estes. 1999). MT: Montana Federation. Hilliard. Preserves. See also Hilliard’s Hog Meat and Hoecake: Food Supply in the Old South 1840-1860 (Carbondale: Southern Illinois Press. “Hog Meat and Cornpone: Food Habits in the Antebellum South. Freedom’s Women: Black Women and Families in Civil War Era Mississippi (Bloomington: Indiana University Press. 1972). See the description of Maun Hanna’s baking in Julia Peterkin’s Scarlet Sister Mary 1928 (reprt. Noralee Frankel. 1999). Pickles. Sam B.172 71. OK: Howling Moon Press. 75. 56-69. 32pp. Emma Harris (Montana Federation of Negro Women's Clubs. 88-89. What Mrs. Schwalm. Good Things to Eat as Suggested by Rufus 1911(Jenks. 1 (1969): 1-13. Etc. MA: Applewood. A Hard Fight for We: Women’s Transition from Slavery to Freedom in South Carolina (Urbana: University of Illinois Press. 73. . Negro Women's Clubs. 74. 1881 (Bedford. 1995). Cook Book) Choice Recipes of Cateresses and Best Cooks of the State . Leslie A. 72. 28-29. Abby Fisher. Athens: University of Georgia Press. 1927).” Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society 113 no. Harris. Emma G. 176. (Billings. Fisher Knows about Old Southern Cooking. 1997). Soups. Ways and Means Committee. 1998).
The Alabama country store “held groceries.” The Louisiana store was a reliable source for whiskey and its invoices reveal a few spices (Invoice book.173 76. crackers. 1995). sacks of flour. Louisiana. 77. coffee. gossiped. and a bench where men gathered. Labor of Sorrow: Black Women. Reddoch (“As It Was: A Family Portrait. kits of salt mackerel. typescript on file in the Louisiana State Archives) listed the contents of an Alabama store circa 1915. Tillery & Company in Greensburg. molasses. Vienna sausage. Only . hominy grits. oysters. see Crum. Jacqueline Jones. sweet and sour pickles. 26-27. L. sugar in barrels. barred windows. with stout shutters. Labor of Love. 78. potted meat. 80. rice. salt. Work and the Family from Slavery to the Present 1985 (New York: Basic Books. A boy could also buy cookies such as ginger snaps. sardines. and “stick candy in many flavors. His list is eerily similar to a list compiled from the 1897 invoice book for W. Country stores stocked less food than one might think. a wheel of American cheese. large tins of link sausage packed in cottonseed oil … canned salmon. The focus was on goods with long shelf lives. and whittled. canned goods. Joseph W. Dr. Louisiana State Archives).” 1978. Picture Low country stores as weatherworn structures. Reddoch noted the storekeeper took eggs in exchange for store goods. corn meal. salt meat.
C. Bull’s “The General Merchant in the Economic History of the South. 81. 56. tea. p. mustard. for example. quoted in Journal of Southern History. baking powder. 80. also see Bull. Willie Dotson. Quote is by Howard Odum in Jacqueline P. See Stephenson. 1879-1881. 1998). 33).62 ½ cents). $97. but there were regional variations. Making Freedom Pay: North Carolina Freedpeople working for Themselves. 12. 40. also offered cinnamon bark. Irish potatoes. Sharon Ann Holt. dried peaches. sorghum. 2000). vinegar.87. On January 1st 1867 he owed a freed slave. coffee. A Tennessee store. An example from Eli Capell’s store accounts shows how this worked. Williams’ daybook.25 ½ cents in profit— money that he immediately spent buying additional goods from Capell. 56). Green Thursday 1924 (Athens: University of Georgia Press. 1865-1900 (Athens: University of Georgia Press. Julia Peterkin.174 limited provisions were normally available in rural areas. Williams papers. lard oil. cayenne pepper. maple sugar (a local product). no. Dotson had exactly $3. Standing at the Crossroads: Southern Life in the Twentieth Century (New York: Hill and Wang. chestnuts. Pete Daniel.” The Journal of Southern History 18. 1 (1952). 84. 373. After deducting for Dotson’s 1866 expenses ($94. 79. 1986). nutmeg. and other spices (J. .
. 85. 86. 88. Oral interview. Asked why a black tenant farmer wanted to raise livestock and how he would feed them. 55. Jones. 83. Daniel.” Quoted in Reid. a Sea Island agent replied: “Feed them? Out of your corn-crib. Caroline Davis. In possession of the author. of course . 86. . 119-120. 463). November 2002. Labor of Love. Green Thursday. Labor of Love. 51. Tulane University Library. . It began with white families and gradually incorporated black families. Special Collections. . Interview with Emma McCloud in Daniel. this fact prompted a massive campaign throughout the south to promote canning of tomatoes. is readily apparent in explanations of why Freedmen could not keep livestock. Also see Jones. 91. Crum. along with greed. 223. Friends of the Cabildo transcripts. 87. 82-83. he would steal the corn you fed your mules . Prejudice.175 82. The first black Tomato Club for young black girls/women was . 87. 90. out of the very trough from which the mules were eating it. Typescript of oral interview with Effie Burns (born 1900). 15-17. Peterkin. 84. 89. Bull. Much later.
Scarlet Sister Mary. Westberry quoted in Carmen Harris’s “Grace under Pressure. and the next generation will understand the arts of farming better than we do. 61. News Company. Another account notes how a Sea Island woman made cornbread: “mix meal and water together with a little salt. .176 organized in 1917. Charlene Gilbert and Quinn Eli. Charles Stearns. The Blue Grass Cook Book (New York: Duffield & Co. 94. . 40-41 . based on the premise that “No race of people can rise above the level of their women. extension service work among fully grown black women in South Carolina started earlier. Peterkin. 93. eds.” in Rethinking Home Economics: Women and the History of a Profession. Minnie C. 92. A woman from Vicksburg. 61. 206-207). 1997). 95. Highways and Byways of the Mississippi Valley (New York: Macmillan.E. Teach girls to raise tomatoes. NY: Cornell University Press. Homecoming: The Story of African-American Farmers (Boston: Beacon Press. 86. much to the author’s dismay”. Vincenti (Ithaca. 1872). Sarah Stage and Virginia B. 1906). 1911). . in 1914. Mississippi quoted by Clifton Johnson. Fox. This was done by eye and her proportions always varied. However. 2000).” Ransom W. The Black Man of the South and the Rebels (Boston: N..
Typescript in possession of the author. 15-17. until its introduction. 1998). and 100 Recipes from a Charleston Kitchen (Chapel Hill. Edna Lewis.com. 15.” July 2003. Opinions. Crum. According to the company history at www. 98. Crum. 101. Mrs. and the Foundation of an African American Environmental Perspective. 13-14. particularly 125-128. See Taylor. as well as Williams-Forson. 1976). 8. Dianne D. 25-29. Oral interview. NC: Algonquin Books. Glave. Taste of Country Cooking (New York: Knopf. even middle class or wealthy country families used wood stoves well into the 1930s.” For information . 99.karosyrup. Whaley Entertains: Advice. See Emily Whaley. 100. Holt.177 96. For information on some of the newer processed items see Nutrition and Health issued by The Borden Company (1924). 97. “the American housewife carried her syrup jug "to the grocery store to be refilled from the grocer’s barrels of syrup. 20-21. November 2002. 2-7. Progressive Reform. Borden's Eagle Brand Condensed Milk is pure cow's milk combined with unadulterated cane sugar. While this white woman grew up in poverty. Diet differences between sharecropper and landowner were dramatic across the South. “Gardening. 102. xiv-v. Environmental History 8(3): 395-411. Also see Holt.
44. NY: Doubleday. 132 . Tulane University Library. 123. Angelou. and Memphis throughout her dissertation. Hallelujah. 104. wheat flour is used sparingly. 149-50. Craig Claiborne. Marcie Cohen Ferris documents the process among Jewish families in Savannah. 107. 53). Jones. The Gift of Southern Cooking: Recipes and Revelations from Two Great American Cooks (New York: Knopf. A Feast Made for Laughter (Garden City. 2003). Life on the Old Plantation (Columbia. 1982). 12. 1995). Typescript of oral interview with Effie Burns (born 1900). 109. 55. rice flour appears throughout. Irving E. Dorie Sanders’ Country Cooking: Recipes and Stories from the Family Farm Stand (Chapel Hill: Algonquin Books. and Mellon. 41. Friends of the Cabildo transcripts.178 on hunting see Crum. Concerning use of recipes see Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock. 106. Dennett. New Orleans. 105. Lowery. Montgomery. 1911). Charleston. 43) whereas in Sarah Rutledge’s 1847 cookbook. Special Collections. 13. Dorie Sanders. 20. Planters supplied flour as part of rations (Mellon. 108. SC: University of South Carolina Press. 103. 11-12.
New Orleans Cook Book. January 10. (Chapel Hill. Editorial page. and the Foundation of an African American Environmental Perspective. No. Inc. 112. (Washington: Schiller Institute. Amelia Boynton Robinson. Bridge across Jordan. 116. Dianne D. Church South. 1999. Chursh South (Louisiana: Parker Memorial M. “Gardening. 111. 99). Defender. Glave. 1988). Environmental History 8(3): 395-411. weekly health or home economics columns and restaurant reviews. Leigh Campbell in Susan Tucker’s Telling Memories among Southern Women: Domestic Workers and their Employers in the Segregated South (New York: Schocken Books. Woman’s Parsonage and Home Mission Society of Parker Memorial M. 118.. 1995).E. Danny Moore in “To Make the Best Better”: The Establishment of Girls’ Tomato Clubs in Mississippi.E. In advertisements. NC: Algonquin Books. 1911-1915. LuAnn Landon. 113. Ferris. Dinner at Miss Lady's.179 110. op cit.” July 2003. 51. 114. 1920. 115. The Journal of Mississippi History. Feature articles . the Defender’s middle-class prejudices were often demonstrated in discussions of food (9). 119. Progressive Reform. 1991. Leigh Campbell in Telling Memories. 2 (Summer 2001). 49. Volume LXIII.
122. fantasizing and sometimes experimenting with the recipes. 1988 facsimile). which imitates plantation cooking. November 1939 interview with Clyde Kingfisher Smith by Marion Charles Hatch. J. 9-10. Ferris. Starr. 1871). E.” American Life Histories: Manuscripts from the Federal Writers' Project. Porter's New Southern Cookery Book (Philadelphia. Hoskins.180 such as one entitled “Pig Ankle Joints” warned against the “unsightly. The WPA slave narratives contain many examples of plantation cooking from a black perspective. 123. Poe. the second was recorded by Terry Roth in 1938 in Street Cries and Criers of New York. . New York. 124.10. down-home foods. unsanitary eating places and wagons” which catered to the migrant class’s desire for familiar. as does Mrs. read them their selves. xvii-xx. 125. Potter and company. 121. The first is from a cry of Clyde Kingfisher Smith. “Street cries and chants. In southern homes found excuses to visit their neighbors who received the paper. 39. 160.c. 1936-1940. are: Among the cookbooks that form the basis for this essay Martha McCullough Williams’ Dishes and Beverages of the Old South (Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press. 120. WPA.
Dorie Sanders’ Country Cooking: Recipes and Stories from the Family Farm Stand (Chapel Hill: Algonquin Books. Dull’s Southern Cooking (New York: Grossett & Dunlap. The Picayune Creole Cookbook (New Orleans. a style also codified in Mrs.181 Kathy Starr’s. Verstille’s 1866 Mrs. Any number of charity cookbooks present imitative or nostalgic plantation cooking. contrasting nicely with earlier texts like Mrs. 1928). J. Reprinted 1995 by Random House) splendidly represents the urban milieu. 1995) and Edna Lewis’ Taste of Country Cooking (New York: Knopf. 1948)). Good Things to Eat as Suggested by Rufus (Jenks. Inc. 1954). 1901. Oklahoma: Howling Moon Press. There are at least two cookbooks that distill the sophistication of food among the black elite prior to 1950 (Rufus Estes. New York: Simon and Schuster) is an earlier example. 1989) is a good illustration of hard scrabble cooking. 1976) convey evocative accounts of country cooking. E. There are few early texts which exemplify commercial cooking in the South. 1911. The Soul of Southern Cooking (Jackson: University of Mississippi Press. Ruth Gaskin’s A Good Heart and a Light Hand (1968. 1999 reprint) and Freda DeKnight. Verstille’s Southern Cooking (New York: Owens and Agar) detailing Louisiana country cooking (with Germanic nuances) and Mary Land’s Louisiana Cooking (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press. but . Date with a Dish (New York: Hermitage Press.
n.).. VA: Press of Hampton Institute. 1985). 1926) and The Georgia Salzburger Society’s Ye Olde Time Salzburger Cookbook (Ebenezer. 1912). n. . 1940.p. Two examples of published cookbooks with ethnic variations of southern cooking for the Jewish and German cuisines include Every Woman’s Cookbook by Mrs.d. Lena Richard’s New Orleans Cook Book (Boston: Houghton Mifflin.182 consider S. Dover reprint. Georgia. Charles Moritz and Adele Kahn (New York: Cupples and Leon. Thomas Bivens’ The Southern Cookbook: A Manual of Cooking and Lists of Menus. including Recipes Used by Noted Colored Cooks and Prominent Caterers (Hampton.
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