At the wonderful Everybody Eats themed South Dakota State Historical Society conference, the other keynote speaker was Susan Evans McClure of the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. She spoke on collecting and preserving historic foodways material and also how they used food in their programming both as a draw and a subject. For example, they recently sponsored a discussion about foodways of the Supreme Court. They even have a focus page on their website to direct you to all of their food related collections and activities.
I’ve been enjoying their blog. So far my two favorite articles are on recreating meals from period cookbooks. This is something frequently done by living historians to learn more about how food was made, processed, and consumed. However, the most recent living history sites I know of focus on the 1930s so to see that applied to both the 1930s and 1940s is a real treat.
One of their most recent initiatives has been to dedicate an entire weekend to food history. This October 27-29, 2016 join the fun at the Smithsonian as they turn their attention to food and food history. The theme this year is “Politics on Your Plate.” The event will “explore the relationship between food, politics, and people. How have we participated, as individuals and communities, in shaping American food and foodways? Whose voices are influencing food policy today? What are the critical issues, and what role does democracy play in the future of food in America?”
The Smithsonian urges you to “talk and taste your way through food history” during three days of activities and events. Check out the schedule for specifics.
This is the second year that they have held the event, so here’s hoping that they have a good turn out so they will continue this new tradition. Learn more.
Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales striving to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.