Family Recipe Book and Fund of Information. Number 2. Presented by the leading business firms of Coldwater, Mich. Distributed by Van Aken Bros., Liverymen.

Coldwater, Mich. Compiled and Published by The Sun, 1891.

Octavo (22.5 x 15 cm.), 30 pages. Advertisements (some illustrated) interspersed and in running headers and footers. Engraving of the Sun Building on page 19. Irregular periodical number. An example of a hybrid community cookbook, almanac, and trivia digest sheet intended to appear as an irregular serial publication. Herewith issue number two, with some fifty attributed recipes mixed among the advertisements and advice. As a publication it is valuable for another reason. On page [5] appears an acknowledged that the recipes have been included by arrangement with compilers of a church cookbook titled Good Living and How to Attain It, published by St. Mark's Episcopal Church of Coldwater. Only one copy of this book (1885) is known to have survived, sold in a lot by Swann Auction Galleries in 2008. Its whereabouts are currently unknown. A revised edition (1907) was seen by the Massies – possibly the copy owned by Michigan State University – during the preparation of Walnut Pickles and Watermelon Cake (1990). As might be expected of an advertising vehicle, the recipes offer a snapshot of favorite staples: Cottage Pudding, Caramel Custard, Citron Pound Cake, Spiced Plums, Pickled Peaches, Cold Slaw, Ginger Cookies, Sally Lunn, Railroad Cake, Graham Bread. ~ The earlier newspapers Branch County Record and Coldwater Sentinel were purchased by the stock company C.J. Thorpe & Co. and restarted as The Coldwater Sun in July 1882. But the inaugural issue of The Family Recipe Book had already appeared, in the late 1880s, initiated as a serial by a competing newspaper, The Courier. It is likely that subsequent numbers were issued; an identical title published by Bailey & Bradley of Coldwater in 1902 is held by the Fales Library (New York University; Smith Collection of Cookery Ephemera MSS.295, box 2, folder 24). The prohibitionist Willis C. Bailey (1862-ca. 1950) became half-owner of the Sun in 1883 and sole proprietor in 1888. He would shortly expand to publish directories and similar publications, and institute a sort of dual newspaper, issuing the Sun on Mondays and the Coldwater Star on Thursdays. ~ The St. Mark's congregation of the now lost cookbook was organized in 1848. The cornerstone of the current church building was laid in 1880, its tower bell installed in 1888, and its organ – still in use – in 1895, all of which dates confirm the contemporaneity of much parish activity, for which funds might have been gladly received from the "leading business firms" credited here. Age-toned and lightly foxed. Stapled in rose paper wrappers with black lettering; some chipping to fore-edges and spine. Good. Unrecorded. [OCLC locates no copies of issue Number 2, and one undated copy of the first issue, published by The Courier; in neither Cook, Brown, nor Cagle].

Price: $300.00

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