April 13, 2005 Laura Schenone Will Talk About History of Women Through Family Recipes on April 20

Press Contact: Donna Urschel (202) 707-1639
Public Contact: Alison Kelly (202) 707- 0911

Laura Schenone, author of “A Thousand Years Over a Hot Stove: A History of American Women Told Through Food, Recipes and Remembrances,” will give a lecture followed by a book-signing at the Library of Congress at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, April 20, in the sixth floor Mumford Room of the James Madison Memorial Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C.

To enhance the program, more than 300 cookbooks from the Library’s general collections will be on display. The event is co-sponsored by the Library’s Science, Technology and Business Division and the Library of Congress Cooking Club. Schenone, a freelance writer from Montclair, N.J., is the winner of the 2004 James Beard Foundation Award in the category of food and reference writing. Her book, “A Thousand Years Over a Hot Stove,” celebrates the power of food throughout American history and in the lives of women. It recounts how American women have gathered, cooked and prepared food for lovers, strangers and family, from prehistory to the present day. The book contains more than 100 images showing women growing, preparing, selling, sharing, serving and enjoying food.

There will be many types of cookbooks on display, such as charity cookbooks compiled by women’s aid societies, churches, temples, museums, symphonies and other organizations. Ethnic cookbooks and cookbooks from around the world will be on view. There will be cookbooks from popular television shows, such as “The Sopranos,” “Murder She Wrote” and “Days of Our Lives,” and cookbooks commemorating families. Wartime cookbooks will also be featured.

Constance Carter, head of the Science Reference Section, has asked Library staff members to share favorite family recipes. Copies of those recipes will be available at the lecture. “We have asked Library staff to delve into the recipe boxes of their mothers, grandmothers and great aunts, and to write a little on the recipe. We will have those family recipes available for people to take, and better yet, we’ll have made some of these recipes so people can have a taste, as well as a cup of Temperance punch,” said Carter. A small collection of old cooking utensils will also be on view.


PR 05-094
ISSN 0731-3527