Food in the Civil War Era cover
Food in the Civil War Era
The North
Edited by Helen Zoe Veit
Cookbooks offer a unique and valuable way to examine American life. Their lessons, however, are not always obvious. Direct references to the American Civil War were rare in cookbooks, even in those published right in the middle of it. In part, this is a reminder that lives went on and that dinner still appeared on most tables most nights, no matter how much the world was changing outside. But people accustomed to thinking of cookbooks as a source for recipes, and not much else, can be surprised by how much information they can reveal about the daily lives and ways of thinking of the people who wrote and used them. In this fascinating historical compilation, excerpts from five Civil War–era cookbooks present a compelling portrait of cooking and eating in the urban north of the 1860s United States.
Publication Date: May 1st, 2014
250 pages| 8 in x 8 in
Helen Zoe Veit is Associate Professor of History at Michigan State University. She specializes in American history in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, focusing on the history of food and nutrition. She is the author of Modern Food, Moral Food: Self-Control, Science, and the Rise of Modern American Eating in the Early Twentieth Century, and general editor of the American Food in History Series.    

Early Praise

"A key moment in American culinary history is brought life by readable, authoritative essays and excerpts from contemporary cookbooks. Fascinating.”  
Rachel Laudan, author of Cuisine and Empire: Cooking in World History

“This book provides a fascinating selection of cookbooks from the 1860s, giving readers a taste of this crucial—if quotidian—aspect of American life. I recommend this volume for undergraduate food history courses and readers interested in historical cookery.”
April Merleaux, Assistant Professor of History, Florida International University

“This book provides us with a glimpse at both food habits and the evolution of the genre of cookery books during the American Civil War period, and hence should be of interest to both food historians as well as American studies scholars…These cookbooks provide a window not only on what people were likely cooking and eating, but also capture their authors' reflections on the changing roles of women and servants or slaves and the baseline skills and practices assumed in the kitchen in this critical period of transition in the United States.” 
Rachel A. Ankeny, Program Coordinator, Graduate Program in Food Studies, Associate Professor, School of History and Politics, Associate Dean/Research, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, The University of Adelaide, Australia


Book AwardInternational Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) Book Award, Culinary History, Finalist

Book AwardGourmand International Award, Best Series Cookbook published in the United States
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