Posts Tagged With: history

“Family” recipe Friday: 1904—Madame de Ryther writes about custards and blackberry pie

I’ve written so much about opera-singer-turned-food-writer Madame de Ryther, she almost feels like family, so I think it is safe to include her thoughts and recipes in this Friday’s post.

The Rome Citizen, October 1, 1884; Credit: Fulton History dot com

But before I do that, I wanted to mention that quite some time ago, blog reader Bill S., who also developed a bit of an obsession with Jule, alerted me to the fact that he’d come across information proving that Madame de Ryther had indeed once been married. Prior to that, I’d wondered whether she had adopted the name because it sounded somewhat exotic and would have been useful for her singing career.

Bill sent me a couple of obituaries for Jule’s husband John de Ryther, who died “at home” in his room at the Arlington Hotel in Rome, New York, on September 30, 1884. He was roughly 50 years of age. The cause of death was given as lung congestion and “asthmatic difficulty.”

The Rome Citizen article indicates that John had not been well for a number of years. I wonder whether a fall he’d taken in an elevator shaft the previous year had perhaps hastened his demise. Surely it could not have helped.

The Syracuse Sentinel, October 3, 1884; Credit: Fulton History dot com

The Utica Morning Herald, April 18, 1883, reported under the heading “Rome Matters”: “John De Ryther. who fell thro’ the elevator well at the Arlington yesterday, is much more comfortable this evening.” I found another article in the Rome Citizen dated July 13, 1883, that mentioned a little girl had fallen the same distance as John down an elevator shaft (24 feet), but that she came away unscathed, while he had been “disabled for weeks”. Such a fall certainly could not have helped someone who already had a history of health problems.

In any case, it’s clear from the obituaries that John was a highly beloved and popular citizen who had held many important positions. At the time of John’s death, Jule was in her late 40s and living in New York City, where her singing career was still going strong.

Bill also sent me a ton of links to loads of Jule’s food and recipe articles, and he even managed to find an image of Jule’s face in an old newspaper he found on Newspapers.com. Unfortunately, I cannot display it here until I find it on a website like Fulton History that places no restrictions on usage. Bill wondered why, given Jule’s success in life as an opera singer and food writer, that he could find no bona fide photos of her anywhere. I find that quite strange too. But hopefully one or more surface some day so I can include them here.

I found the two Jules De Ryther articles below on Fulton History; they are from 1904. The custard article, which includes instructions and ideas for custard pies and baked and boiled custards, would have been good to include in the post I did with my great-grandmother’s custard recipe, but, alas, that ship has sailed.

As for the blackberry pie recipe, it really sounds heavenly. I am going to give it a whirl when blackberries are in season and at their best (and the price is reasonable). Her recipe calls for 1.5 quarts per pie, and she insists that no lard be used for the crust and that the pie should be eaten immediately and never refrigerated.

Finally, for anyone planning to try Jule’s recipes that require baking, a reminder that oven temperatures were referred to differently back then:

  • Slow Oven = 325°F (163°C)
  • Moderate Oven = 375°F (191°C)
  • Hot or Quick Oven = 425 °F (218°C)
  • Bread or Pastry Oven = 360°F (182°C)

Happy Friday!

Custards_NY_Press_1MAY1904

New York Press, 1 May 1904 (Credit: Fulton History dot com)

Blackberry_PIe_NY_Press_1904_FS

New York Press, 1904 (Credit: Fulton History dot com)

Categories: Food: Family Recipes & Favorites, Madame Jule de Ryther, New York, Rome | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Happy National Ice Cream Day

In 1984, President Ronald Reagan named July National Ice Cream Month and the third Sunday in July National Ice Cream Day—so Happy National Ice Cream Day 2017 to all of you. No need to tell you that ice cream has been a beloved treat for a very long time as evidenced by the Library of Congress Archive images below. You will notice one image of an airplane promoting a National Ice Cream Day on May 27, 1920. I’m not sure what that was all about; perhaps an effort to establish such a day back then given prohibition started on January 17, 1920, and America’s prohibition-fueled consumption of sweets and ice cream was already on a rapid rise.

When you tuck into your favorite flavor(s) today, may these ice cream-themed images of yesteryear dance in your head. Bon appétite!

Currier & Ives. The Cream of Love. , ca. 1879. New York: Published by Currier & Ives. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/91723709/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

Hine, Lewis Wickes, photographer. [Where the newsboy’s money goes. Investigator, Edward F. Brown.Location: Wilmington, Delaware / Photo by Louis i.e. Lewis W. Hine, May, 1910]. Delaware Wilmington, 1910. May. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/ncl2004002274/PP/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

The Ice Cream Girl. , ca. 1913. Aug. 11. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/2003688432/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

Detroit Publishing Co., Publisher. On the beach at Atlantic City, N.J. Atlantic City New Jersey, None. [Between 1900 and 1906] Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/det1994006562/PP/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

Bain News Service, Publisher. Eileen Sedgwick — Marion Tiffany. , 1917. [June] Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/ggb2005024649/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

Hine, Lewis Wickes, photographer. Sanitary Ice Cream Cone Co., 116 S. Dewey St. Cisar, Manager. John Myers, 14 years old, who is in Grade 6 in Franklin School works after school and Saturday. He has been there 7 months. Can bake cones as well as pack them. For a month in the Fall, after school started, he went to school and worked from 4 p.m. to midnight. Expects to do it again soon. Gets $4 a week for part time and $8 a week when working 8 hours a day.Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma / Lewis W. Hine. Oklahoma City, 1917. April 3. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/ncl2004004861/PP/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

Reid Ice Cream Co. truck, probably in Washington, D.C. , 1918. [?] Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/2001706376/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

[Betty Compson, half length portrait, standing, with umbrella, in bathing suit, facing slightly right, eating Eskimo Pie. Movie star]. , ca. 1922. Dec. 26. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/2005691986/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

Thos. R. Shipp Aeroplane. , 1920. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/npc2007001691/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

[Group of Farm Women Holding Plates of Cake and Ice Cream and Spooning Homemade Ice Cream Out of Freezers]. , None. [Between 1935 and 1930] Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/2006690311/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

Mrs. Herbert Hoover feeds ice cream to a small black bear cub, Seward, Alaska. Alaska Seward, ca. 1926. Meadville, Pa.: Keystone View Company, manufacturers, publishers. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/91481774/. (Accessed July 23, 2017.)

Chicago Sunday Tribune, May 23, 1920 [Though the third Sunday in July was declared National Ice Cream Day by President Ronald Reagan, here is evidence of an attempt to establish a national day back in 1920. Perhaps this was the result of the prohibition-fueled, astronomic rise in ice cream consumption. (Prohibition – 1920-1933)]

Categories: 1890s, 1900s, Advertisements, Food: Family Recipes & Favorites, United States | Tags: , , , , | 12 Comments

A Florida Friday: Birds of a feather…

ibis copyI pulled back the blinds one morning last weekend and instantly felt that kind of ‘wow’ kids feel when they wake up in the morning and catch their first sight of an overnight winter snowfall. But instead of a blanket of white snow, I saw a preserve dotted in white—a patchwork quilt of white ibis, palms, and cypress trees. And for every white ibis I could see, there was a brown ibis blending in with the debris and dark waters on the cypress preserve floor.

ibis2 copyI guess we can thank El Niño for this unusual winter sight. Record rainfall has filled swamp areas back up to summer levels, and these ‘gals’ and ‘guys’ have come to scour the grounds for bugs and other edible critters. And throughout the past week, they have continued to turn up daily to put on their show. Greedy for more, I am now hoping some egrets, herons, woodstorks and roseate spoonbills decide to join them!

ibis3 copyWhen one sees ibis in such abundance, it’s hard (and sickening) to imagine that there was a time 100-odd-years ago when ibis and many other of Florida’s beautiful birds were hunted down and slaughtered for their plumage with populations being decimated as a result. The author of the accompanying article from the Rome Daily Sentinel, published on 18 August 1896, attests to the fact that hunting for the birds had gotten way out of control and measures were desperately needed to protect them. Thankfully, that eventually happened, and hence, sights such as the one in my backyard are not uncommon in Florida today (they are just uncommon in my backyard!).

"Eudocimus ruber -Cubatao, Sao Paulo, Brazil -flying-8a" by Dario Sanches - Flickr: GUARA (Eudocimus ruber). Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Eudocimus_ruber_-Cubatao,_Sao_Paulo,_Brazil_-flying-8a.jpg#/media/File:Eudocimus_ruber_-Cubatao,_Sao_Paulo,_Brazil_-flying-8a.jpg

Eudocimus ruber -Cubatao, Sao Paulo, Brazil -flying-8a” by Dario Sanches – Flickr: GUARA (Eudocimus ruber). Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

The 1896 article mentions the scarlet ibis (Eudocimus ruber) as particularly being singled out by hunters (image right) along with herons and snowy egrets, and song birds like mockingbirds and cardinals. (The American flamingo, mentioned in the article as being abundant in South Florida in the 1800s, has all but disappeared in the wild. If you happen to see one in Florida today, it is likely an escapee from an area attraction.)

I’ve never seen scarlet ibis in the wild in Florida, but apparently they are occasionally spotted. Their native range today appears to be along the northern and eastern coastlines of northern South America, down to São Paolo. They can appear as vagrants in Florida, Ecuador, and a number of countries in the Caribbean.

The current IUCN Red List of Endangered Species lists the scarlet ibis as a species of ‘Least Concern’, which would please the article’s author, no doubt, if he were alive today, as would knowing that all of Florida’s birds became legally protected in 1913.

The Smithsonian article “How Two Women Ended the Deadly Feather Trade” describes how this hideous trade ultimately came to an end:

snowyegret

Snowy Egret

Egrets and other wading birds were being decimated until two crusading Boston socialites, Harriet Hemenway and her cousin, Minna Hall, set off a revolt. Their boycott of the trade would culminate in formation of the National Audubon Society and passage of the Weeks-McLean Law, also known as the Migratory Bird Act, by Congress on March 4, 1913. The law, a landmark in American conservation history, outlawed market hunting and forbade interstate transport of birds.

One hundred years later, we are blessed to have these birds in our midst, but the picture is far from 100% rosy as Florida’s current list of threatened and endangered species attests. Thirty-six species of birds are on the list, including the snowy egret, brown pelican, and white ibis, which are classified as ‘species of special concern’, so if they were ever completely ‘out of the woods’ after 1913, they are back in them now…something to keep in mind and let others know about, if they don’t know already.

Well, enough said—time to take another look out the back window.

Have a great weekend, all, and thanks for stopping by.

************************************************************************************

Rome Daily Sentinel, 18 August 1896 (Credit: Fultonhistory.com):

part1part2part3part4part5

Museum of Natural History Guide leaflet, 1901. Uploaded to Wikimedia Commons from Flickr, no known copyright restrictions

Museum of Natural History Guide leaflet, 1901. Uploaded to Wikimedia Commons from Flickr, no known copyright restrictions

littleblueheronpelican_fishwhitepelican

 

Categories: Florida, Nature | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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