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Historical Cooking Books: – Foods and cookery and the care of the house; by Mary Lockwood Matthews (1921) – 13 in a series

October 14th, 2018 No comments

Archive.org has a host of old cookery books (from mid-19th to mid-20th Century) available in many formats and on a host of topics. I happened across a few in my Pinterest feed and gone completely down the rabbit hole in this treasure trove of information. Sure some ideas might be out of date, but you never know what you might find when you explore these books. I’ll be sharing more books as I find them in the coming weeks. –Douglas


Historical Cooking Books: – Foods and cookery and the care of the house; by Mary Lockwood Matthews (1921) – 13 in a series

Historical Cooking Books: - Foods and cookery and the care of the house; by Mary Lockwood Matthews (1921) - 13 in a seriesHistorical Cooking Books: - Foods and cookery and the care of the house; by Mary Lockwood Matthews (1921) - 13 in a series

Historical Cooking Books: - Foods and cookery and the care of the house; by Mary Lockwood Matthews (1921) - 13 in a series

PREFACE

This volume is intended for use in classes begin- ning the study of foods and cookery. It has been arranged for use in the elementary schools and does not presuppose any training in general science. It is strictly an elementary treatment of the subject.

The book deals with foods, their selection and preparation, and the planning of meals from the nutritive, aesthetic and economic standpoints. The “meal plan” is used in order to make the meal the basis of the work. Through the “Home Problems” the home and school work may be correlated.

The author appreciates the help given in illus- trating the book by the United States Department of Agriculture, the United States Bureau of Stand- ards, the Detroit Stove Works, and the Chambers Manufacturing Company. The author also grate- fully acknowledges the criticisms and suggestions of educators who kindly read the manuscript.

TO THE STUDENT

Have you thought about what you will do when you finish school ?

Perhaps you have decided to be a teacher, a librarian, a stenographer, a doctor, a nurse. Perhaps you are making plans to take a course in high school or college that will fit you for one of these callings ; you would not consider yourself capable of entering any of them without training.

Very probably you will be at some time the manager of a home. Have you thought about the importance of being trained for home-making?

It is only within the past twenty-five years that it has been considered proper for the public schools to train girls for the work which most of them will do for the longest period in their lives, the work of home-making.

Mrs. Ellen H. Richards was the first to say that the schools ought to teach ” right living;” and, largely through her efforts and her inspiration, plans have been worked out whereby girls while in school can be taught many things about right living.

Right living begins with the home. Who makes the home? The man may furnish the money to build and maintain the house, but it is the woman who plans and manages the home. It is her busi- ness to see that the family lives in a sanitary and an attractive house ; that every member of the family has clean, properly selected and well cooked food ; that every one is suitably clothed ; that the family income is wisely spent, and that all in the home are helped to lead a happy and useful life.

No girl should consider the making and managing of a home an easy piece of work, for in fact nothing is harder to do and to do well.

When the girl takes work in school and college that covers all phases of home-making, we say that she is taking a course in Home Economics.


 

THE DINING ROOM

The dining room should be a light, cheerful room, situated so that the sunlight reaches it at some time every day, preferably in the morning. This room should be large enough to permit easy passing behind the chairs when persons are seated around the table.

The walls should be finished in light colors rather than dark, which tend to make the room appear gloomy. The window curtains should be of a kind easily laundered, since draperies in a dining room are apt to hold dirt and odors and need frequent cleaning.

The floor is best made of hard wood, as a rug may then be used instead of a carpet. A dining-room floor would be more sanitary if no covering were used, but the noise made by using a bare floor is annoying to many persons.

The furniture should be plain in design. Wood or cane-seated chairs are perhaps better to use than upholstered, because they are easier to keep clean. A dining-table with a top having a waxed finish is much better than one highly varnished. • The top of the sideboard and serving-table should not be crowded with dishes of various kinds. A dining room is more pleasing with few pictures, or none at all, and with little bric-a-brac or few dishes used as decoration.

When buying a “set” of dishes it is best to select a style with simple decoration or without decoration. Large conspicuous designs and bright colors become tiresome when the dishes are used often. A good quality of china with no decoration is a wise choice for a “set “, because any type of decorated dish looks well with it.

Silver knives and forks should be of the same pattern, but the spoons may be of different design. Silver never looks well unless it is kept polished.

White linen tablecloths and napkins are better to buy than cotton, because linen wears longer and launders much better than cotton. Luncheon sets of various types may be used instead of a tablecloth, and are much easier to launder

 


Available in PDF, Text, JPG formats, and more

Publication date 1921
Publisher Boston, Little, Brown, and company
Digitizing sponsor Sloan Foundation
Language English

Learn more about cooking history with these books

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

Categories: Books, Cooking, Food, History, In the kitchen Tags:

My Favorite Things: The Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature Digital Archive

October 9th, 2018 No comments

Interesting Sites: The Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature Digital Archive

My Favorite Things: The Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature Digital Archive

I am not sure exactly where I stumbled across this site, but it is amazing — especially if you are interested in or researching children’s literature. The digital archive allows you to page through books from the comfort of your own home without ever visiting the University of Florida’s Libraries. Of course, you could also visit and see the books up close.

Interesting Sites: The Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature Digital Archive Aaron wildlands Interesting Sites: The Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature Digital Archive

Some example covers

The Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature in the Department of Special Collections at the University of Florida’s George A. Smathers Libraries contains more than 130,000 books and periodicals published in the United States and Great Britain from the mid-1600s to present day. The Library also has manuscript collections, original artwork, and assorted ephemera such as board games, puzzles, and toys. The Baldwin Library is known for comparative editions of books, with special emphasis on Robinson Crusoe, Pilgrim’s Progress, Aesop’s Fables, and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. The Library also has the largest collection of Early American Juvenile Imprints of any academic institution in the United States.

 

Other strengths and distinctions of the Baldwin Library include: marginalia and inscriptions, the Hans Christian Andersen Awards Collection, Little Golden Books, religious tracts, and illustrated editions from the Golden Age of Children’s Literature. Scholars worldwide use the Baldwin Library for research in fables, fairy tales, alphabet books, morality tales and religious tracts, conduct of life, gender roles, comparison of editions, adventure stories, and boys’/girls’ series books.

Interesting Sites: The Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature Digital Archive

Interesting Sites: The Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature Digital Archive

Historical Cooking Books: – Our home cyclopedia. Cookery and housekeeping by Edgar S Darling (1889) – 12 in a series

September 30th, 2018 Comments off

Archive.org has a host of old cookery books (from mid-19th to mid-20th Century) available in many formats and on a host of topics. I happened across a few in my Pinterest feed and gone completely down the rabbit hole in this treasure trove of information. Sure some ideas might be out of date, but you never know what you might find when you explore these books. I’ll be sharing more books as I find them in the coming weeks. –Douglas


Historical Cooking Books: – Our home cyclopedia. Cookery and housekeeping by Edgar S Darling (1889) – 12 in a series

Historical Cooking Books: - Our home cyclopedia. Cookery and housekeeping by Edgar S Darling (1889) - 12 in a seriesHistorical Cooking Books: - Our home cyclopedia. Cookery and housekeeping by Edgar S Darling (1889) - 12 in a series

Ourhomecyclopedi00darl 0010Historical Cooking Books: - Our home cyclopedia. Cookery and housekeeping by Edgar S Darling (1889) - 12 in a series

PREFACE

We take pleasure in presenting a book to the public with an arrangement of subjects entirely different from any other published, and designed especially to save much valuable time to the housewife.

The subjects are so arranged that one has only to turn through the book, and from the headlines find each chapter in alphabetical order, making it easy to turn at once to any subject or recipe desired, without even turning to the table of contents.

The object of this book is to give housekeepers the most improved and scientific cookery as developed by the most practical schools of cookery of the present day; keeping in mind economy as far as consistent with well cooked and healthful dishes. Bad cooking is not only a waste of health but of money. This book, no doubt, will save many times its cost to each purchaser. The object being to assist the housekeeper in a practical way, the authors have not catered to the epicure, hence the highly seasoned and expensive dishes have been omitted.

Cook books previously published, have been confined to recipes only, while the general information which is so essential, has been omitted. We have taken a step forward, in giving at the commencement of each chapter, general directions that will apply to the recipes following.

To illustrate, take for instance chapter seven, “Canning Fruit.” Before giving any recipes, valuable instruction is given on those essential points, as preparing the cans, the tops, the rubbers, the kind of cans to be used, heating the fruit, and a complete table giving the quantity of sugar required per quart, and the time for boiling any kind of fruit. In the chapters on poultry, game, and marketing, full information is given on selecting meats of all kinds, where the best cuts of meat are to be found, the carving etc.

In the mechanical arrangement of this volume, the publishers have made it far excell any other cook book ever published.

The type is large and clear, the leaves are broad, and the book is so bound that it will remain open at any point desired, thus saving one’s time in frequent opening, as is the case with books of narrow pages.

The initial letters are entirely new features, and were designed and copyrighted especially for this book. The artist was instructed to represent each chapter in its initial letter. How well he has done so the reader can judge when looking through the book. So valuable and so cheap a book as this one should be owned and used (not borrowed) by every housekeeper.

If this book should be the means of bringing into the household, happiness, peace and contentment; if the husband hereafter sits at the table with a smiling and satisfied countenance, and the wife feels less of care and anxiety, then its mission will have been accomx^lished.

‘^Get a husband what he likes.

And save a thousand household strikes.”


 

Excellent Mead. Three pounds brown sugar, one pint of molasses, one-fourth pound tartaric acid; mix, pour over them two quarts boiling water, stir till dissolved. When cold, add half ounce essence sassafras and bottle. When you wish to drink it, put three tablespoonfuls of it in a tumbler, fill half full with ice water, add a little more than one-fourth teaspoonful soda. An excellent summer beverage.

 


Available in PDF, Text, JPG formats, and more

Publication date 1889
Publisher Detroit, Mich., The Mercantile publishing co.
Digitizing sponsor Sloan Foundation
Language English

Learn more about cooking history with these books

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

Categories: Books, Cooking, Food, History, Recipe Tags:

Historical Cooking Books: Six little cooks, or, Aunt Jane’s cooking class by E. S. (Elizabeth Stansbury) Kirkland – 13 in a series

September 2nd, 2018 Comments off

Archive.org has a host of old cookery books (from mid-19th to mid-20th Century) available in many formats and on a host of topics. I happened across a few in my Pinterest feed and gone completely down the rabbit hole in this treasure trove of information. Sure some ideas might be out of date, but you never know what you might find when you explore these books. I’ll be sharing more books as I find them in the coming weeks. –Douglas


Historical Cooking Books: Six little cooks, or, Aunt Jane’s cooking class by E. S. (Elizabeth Stansbury) Kirkland – 13 in a series

Six little cooks

Historical Cooking Books: Six little cooks, or, Aunt Jane's cooking class by  E. S. (Elizabeth Stansbury) Kirkland - 12 in a seriesHistorical Cooking Books: Six little cooks, or, Aunt Jane's cooking class by  E. S. (Elizabeth Stansbury) Kirkland - 12 in a series

Want a print copy of “Six Little Cooks”? There is a reprint available on Amazon and perhaps at your local library!

FIRST DAY

“Oh, Annt Jane,” said Grace, looking up quickly from the story-book she was reading, ” I wish you would teach us all how to cook! “

But here am I, the author, plunging at once into the middle of my story without a word of explanation, not even a preface. Of course, no one can understand anything about it unless I go back a little, and tell you how it began.

Aunt Jane had come to make a visit to Mrs. Yernon, Grace’s motlier, and had brought her own little girl. Amy, to spend the vacation. Next door lived Edith Lane, a very intimate friend of both the girls, and just across the street, Rose and Jessie Carroll, Grace’s cousins; and these five, witli little Mabel Vernon, made a happy company who were almost always together. Mabel was just nine years old, and the others were from ten to twelve, so there was not difference enough in their ages to prevent their being the best of playmates.

Well — as I began to say, Grace was reading about a wonderful little girl who made such remarkable things in the way of cakes and puddings, that our . young person was seized with a desire to do likewise without delay. Aunt Jane was the kindest of aunts and the best of cooks, and Grace knew that if she would take the trouble to teach them, they would be well taught.

“I should like that of all things,” said she, in answer to Grace’s exclamation, “provided your mother consents.”

“Oh, she’d be perfectly delighted,” cried Grace; “she often says she wishes she had time to teach us herself.”

“Very well, then; run and ask her if we may begin this afternoon.”

“And can’t Rose and Jessie and Edith come too?” inquired Grace eagerly. “They all want to learn, just as much as I do.”

“Not quite so fast,” said Aunt Jane, smiling. ” Suppose we begin with those in the house first, and if it works well we can invite the others afterwards.”


 

And now there is one thing more I should like to have you do. Bring a little blank book, in which you can write down the recipes we try, and if any of them should prove not to be good, we’ll cross them off without mercy.”

The book was quickly brought, and Grace wrote down from her aunt’s dictation, as follows:

No. 1. — Susan’s Cake.

Three cups flour, two of sugar, two-thirds of a cup of butter, one cup of sour milk, three eggs, one teaspoonful soda, two of cream tartar. Two cups seeded raisins, or one of well- washed currants, added, makes a delicious fruit cake. 


Available in PDF, Text, JPG formats, and more

Publication date 1877
Topics Cookery,cbk
Publisher Chicago : Jansen, McClurg
Collection europeanlibraries
Digitizing sponsor Google
Book from the collections of Harvard University
Language English

Learn more about cooking history with these books

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

Categories: Books, Cooking, Food, History, Recipe Tags:

Historical Cooking Books: Willy Lou’s house book; a collection of proved recipes, hints and suggestions for practical cooking, housekeeping and housewifery by Charlotte Amelia Cheesebro Hough, (1913) – 12 in a series

August 26th, 2018 Comments off

Archive.org has a host of old cookery books (from mid-19th to mid-20th Century) available in many formats and on a host of topics. I happened across a few in my Pinterest feed and gone completely down the rabbit hole in this treasure trove of information. Sure some ideas might be out of date, but you never know what you might find when you explore these books. I’ll be sharing more books as I find them in the coming weeks. –Douglas


Historical Cooking Books: Willy Lou’s house book; a collection of proved recipes, hints and suggestions for practical cooking, housekeeping and housewifery by Charlotte Amelia Cheesebro Hough, (1913) – 12 in a series

Historical Cooking Books: Willy Lou's house book; a collection of proved recipes, hints and suggestions for practical cooking, housekeeping and housewifery by Charlotte Amelia Cheesebro Hough,  (1913) - 12 in a seriesHistorical Cooking Books: Willy Lou's house book; a collection of proved recipes, hints and suggestions for practical cooking, housekeeping and housewifery by Charlotte Amelia Cheesebro Hough,  (1913) - 12 in a series

Historical Cooking Books: Willy Lou's house book; a collection of proved recipes, hints and suggestions for practical cooking, housekeeping and housewifery by Charlotte Amelia Cheesebro Hough,  (1913) - 12 in a seriesHistorical Cooking Books: Willy Lou's house book; a collection of proved recipes, hints and suggestions for practical cooking, housekeeping and housewifery by Charlotte Amelia Cheesebro Hough,  (1913) - 12 in a series

INTRODUCTION

To My Readers:

I have tried all the recipes and the suggestions given in this book. Some of them I originated, many came from friends, a few from cooks whom I have employed. It was my wish to make a practical little book for housekeepers, because when I was a young housekeeper, just beginning, I would have been glad to have such an aid in doing things that now seem easy and simple. Nor does any housekeeper ever learn it all. If my book shall prove a sort of exchange of housekeeping wisdom, I hope you will call me your friend.

WILLY LOU.


 

Baking Powder Biscuit

One quart of flour and two teaspoonfuls of
baking powder, one-half teaspoon ful of salt, one
tablespoonful of lard, one large cup of sour cream
in which one-half teaspoonful of soda has been
stirred. Mix all together thoroughly and roll
out, cut with a small cutter, bake in a quick oven
twenty to thirty minutes.

 


Available in PDF, Text, JPG formats, and more

Publication date 1913
Publisher Indianapolis, Bobbs-Merrill Co
Collection cornellamericana
Digitizing sponsor MSN
Contributor usage rights See terms
Language English
 
 

Learn more about cooking history with these books

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

Categories: Books, Cooking, Food, History, Recipe Tags:

To Read: The One-Bottle Cocktail: More than 80 Recipes with Fresh Ingredients and a Single Spirit by Maggie Hoffman

August 20th, 2018 Comments off

I came across this book in my reading and immediately added it to To Read list. My local library holds both print and ebook copies so it shouldn’t be long before I am poring (or should I say “Pouring”) over it soon. This sounds quite similar to another book I highlighted recently, 3 Ingredient Cocktails. it could also be the source of a party ideas I first mention with that book — each person brings spirit and some other ingredient and we use the book to blend up some cocktails we might never have tried before.

The One-Bottle Cocktail: More than 80 Recipes with Fresh Ingredients and a Single Spirit by Maggie Hoffman

To Read: The One-Bottle Cocktail: More than 80 Recipes with Fresh Ingredients and a Single Spirit by Maggie Hoffman

One bottle recipe

Click for larger image

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

Categories: Books, Drinks, Food Tags:

Historical Cooking Books: One thousand and one useful recipes and valuable hints about cooking and housekeeping by X.L. Ewell’s Dairy Bottled Milk Company (Circa 1809) – 11 in a series

August 19th, 2018 Comments off

Archive.org has a host of old cookery books (from mid-19th to mid-20th Century) available in many formats and on a host of topics. I happened across a few in my Pinterest feed and gone completely down the rabbit hole in this treasure trove of information. Sure some ideas might be out of date, but you never know what you might find when you explore these books. I’ll be sharing more books as I find them in the coming weeks. –Douglas


Historical Cooking Books: One thousand and one useful recipes and valuable hints about cooking and housekeeping by X.L. Ewell’s Dairy Bottled Milk Company (Circa 1809) – 11 in a series

Historical Cooking Books: One thousand and one useful recipes and valuable hints about cooking and housekeeping by  X.L. Ewell's Dairy Bottled Milk Company (Circa 1809) - 11 in a seriesHistorical Cooking Books: One thousand and one useful recipes and valuable hints about cooking and housekeeping by  X.L. Ewell's Dairy Bottled Milk Company (Circa 1809) - 11 in a series

Historical Cooking Books: One thousand and one useful recipes and valuable hints about cooking and housekeeping by  X.L. Ewell's Dairy Bottled Milk Company (Circa 1809) - 11 in a seriesHistorical Cooking Books: One thousand and one useful recipes and valuable hints about cooking and housekeeping by  X.L. Ewell's Dairy Bottled Milk Company (Circa 1809) - 11 in a series

History of the Business

(As Compiled from Data of Record by the Undersigned)

Nothing was further from Mr. Ewell’s thoughts than going into the milk business when, many years ago, he loaned a rela- tive and friend some money to engage in the business. Their subsequent failure forced him to take the business to secure himself. Becoming interested after a little experience, Mr. Ewell soon found out, what few people knew, viz. : That but a small proportion of the milk sold in this city is absolutely pure, and the idea occurred to him that a large and profitable business might be built up by furnishing such an article. Not knowing the meaning of the word fail, he commenced experi- menting. Starting with the idea that young, healthy cows, with plenty of good, wholesome food, fresh air, pure water, .good pasture and proper treatment, would produce the best milk, and having all these requisites to start with, at his 800- acre ranch, seven miles from the city, on the San Bruno road, Mr. Ewell for years experimented with all kinds of feed (for be it known that good pasture alone does not produce the rich- est milk, as most every one thinks), both ground and dry, his experience teaching him finally that cooked food gave better results than dry, and that corn, wheat, Egyptian corn, bran, peas, beans, broomcorn seed and middlings, in their seasons, in various combinations, cooked to the consistency of mush, with plenty of squash when in season, cut fine and fed green, giving a cow all she can eat twice a day, with plenty of good Bur clover hay for a change, is the best. This liberal feeding, with good pasture, has enabled Mr. Ewell to produce a milk richer and superior to the production of any other dairy, as the analysis of two of the most prominent analytical chemists of this city (which will be given hereafter) will sufficiently demonstrate, their samples being taken at their own volition, at widely different dates.

Having satisfied himself as to the quality of his milk, Mr. Ewell took for his motto :

“The Purest and Best in the World”


Mashed Potatoes.

Old potatoes, when unfit for plain boiling, may be mashed; take off all the
skin and imperfections, and lay them in cold water for one hour; then put
them into a stew-pan with a teaspoon of salt. Cover with cold water and let
them boil for half an hour; take them up with a skimmer into a wooden bowl
and mash them fine. Melt a piece of butter the size of an egg into half a pint
of EWELL’S X. L. DAIRY BOTTLED MILK; mix it with the mashed pota-
toes until it is thoroughly smooth. The quantity of milk must be in proportion
to the quantity of potatoes.

Mashed potatoes may be made a highly ornamental dish. After shaping
it as taste may direct, turn the edge of the plate with a wreath of celery leaves
or green parsley.


Available in PDF, Text, JPG formats, and more

Publication date [1890?]
Publisher San Francisco : Dutton & Partridge
Collection cdlamericana
Digitizing sponsor MSN
Language English
 

Learn more about cooking history with these books

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

Categories: Books, Cooking, Food, History Tags:

Start A New Beekeeping/Garden Journal these “Bees Take A Drink” Hardcover Journals and Much More!

August 13th, 2018 Comments off

Historical Cooking Books: The college woman’s cook book by College Woman’s Cook Book Association (Evanston, Ill.) (1923) – 10 in a series

August 12th, 2018 Comments off

Archive.org has a host of old cookery books (from mid-19th to mid-20th Century) available in many formats and on a host of topics. I happened across a few in my Pinterest feed and gone completely down the rabbit hole in this treasure trove of information. Sure some ideas might be out of date, but you never know what you might find when you explore these books. I’ll be sharing more books as I find them in the coming weeks. –Douglas


Historical Cooking Books: The college woman’s cook book by College Woman’s Cook Book Association (Evanston, Ill.) (1923) – 10 in a series

Historical Cooking Books: The college woman's cook book by College Woman's Cook Book Association (Evanston, Ill.) (1923) - 10 in a seriesHistorical Cooking Books: The college woman's cook book by College Woman's Cook Book Association (Evanston, Ill.) (1923) - 10 in a series

The compiling and publishing f this book of recipes has been the work of a group of college women, living in and near Evanston, 111., most of whom are graduates of Northwestern University.

A portion of the profit accruing from the publishing of this cook-book is to be given each year for the support of a summer camp in Michigan, where unfortunate kiddies from the cities are given a real vacation.

Over 2,500 college women, most of them housewives, were asked for their best tested recipes. From those submitted, 500 of the best and most unusual have been selected and published in this handy volume. By following the names under each recipe, it will be observed that leading colleges in all parts of the United States and Canada are represented.


 CREAM SCONES

2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
3 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt

Sift three times. Rub in four rounding tablespoons butter with tips of fingers. Add two eggs beaten (reserving small amount of unbeaten white) with one-third cup sweet milk. Toss, on floured board and pat to one-half inch thickness. Brush over with egg white; sprinkle with sugar; cut and bake fifteen minutes in quick overi.

Helen Binnie, Kenosha, Wis. University of Wisconsin.


Available in PDF, Text, JPG formats, and more

Publication date c1923
Publisher Evanston, Il. : College Woman’s Cook Book Assoc.
Language English

Learn more about cooking history with these books

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

Categories: Books, Cooking, Food, History Tags:

Reading – Reveille in Washington: 1860-1865 by Margaret Leech – 20 in a series

August 7th, 2018 Comments off

I’ll be highlighting books that I am reading (or re-reading) on all sorts of topics this year — Douglas

Reading – Reveille in Washington: 1860-1865 by Margaret Leech – 20 in a series

Reading - Reveille in Washington: 1860-1865 by Margaret Leech - 20 in a series

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

History is fascinating, but the smaller, more intimate stories of historical events can often get lost among the “big picture” history of other books. Reveille in Washington is a book that focuses one small, yet infinitely important, town during the American Civil War, Washington, D.C. We are led through the streets of Washington as war begins, cannons are heard on the horizon and a seemingly endless flow of men arrive, are mustered into the U.S. Army, sent off to battle and, for many, return horribly wounded to try and survive in hospitals surrounding the capital.

We learn of secessionists who pack up and leave for the South as the battles begin. Some cheer Confederate victories, run supplies and information through the Union blockades and, in some cases, find themselves locked in military prisons with no hope of release.

We learn of the mud, the stink, the heat, the humidity, the disease-carrying mosquitos that haunted the swampy city each summer. We follow politicians as they come and go, battle on the Congress floor and fight among themselves in Lincoln’s Cabinet Room.

Reveille in Washington reveals the day-to-day reality of Washington during the Civil War and allows us to reflect on a new angle of that conflict.

From Amazon.com…

1860: The American capital is sprawling, fractured, squalid, colored by patriotism and treason, and deeply divided along the political lines that will soon embroil the nation in bloody conflict. Chaotic and corrupt, the young city is populated by bellicose congressmen, Confederate conspirators, and enterprising prostitutes. Soldiers of a volunteer army swing from the dome of the Capitol, assassins stalk the avenues, and Abraham Lincoln struggles to justify his presidency as the Union heads to war. 

Reveille in Washington focuses on the everyday politics and preoccupations of Washington during the Civil War. From the stench of corpse-littered streets to the plunging lace on Mary Lincoln’s evening gowns, Margaret Leech illuminates the city and its familiar figures—among them Abraham Lincoln, Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee, William Seward, and Mary Surratt—in intimate and fascinating detail. 

Leech’s book remains widely recognized as both an impressive feat of scholarship and an uncommonly engrossing work of history.

Previously in (Re)Reading:

Categories: Books, History Tags: