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Monday, April 12, 2010

America's Kitchens Exhibition

Hello, all ♥

It seems like ever since I created this blog,
I'm inadvertently being drawn to different New England
things on my very own home-turf of Long Island.
Long Island- of it's "so close, but so far away"
proximity to New England- is fortunately
(for me) able to participate in various 
New England activities from time to time.

... Have no idea what I'm talking about?

Well, yesterday, my mom and I decided to go
for a Sunday drive to The Long Island Museum;
she loves the painter William Sydney Mount
whose work is permantly featured there, and
we also heard of their America's Kitchens exhibition
that we thought sounded very interesting...

(or you could always ask my mom-
she's a Mount groupie.)

So where does New England come into this?...

We stepped into the exhibit, only to discover
that the Historic New England organization presented it!

And the stranger coincidence is that the only other 
museum the exhibition is being showcased in
in Sandwich, Massachusetts!
(Is that a sign I'm meant
to live there, or what?! :p)

Anyways, the America's Kitchens exhibition 
portrays the evolution of American kitchens
from the Colonial era to present day 
through vignettes, and interactive activities:

"America’s Kitchens showcases the important role of kitchens throughout history. Historic New England’s collections contain innumerable items related to the New England kitchen. For comparison, the exhibition also includes kitchens from the South, the Midwest, and the Southwest.
Each item in the exhibition tells a story – about food preparation and other domestic work, the use of household help, the impact of new technologies, changes in gadgets and appliances, how advertising portrays women’s roles -- and excerpts from letters and diaries reveal both nostalgic memories and despair at the endless drudgery of kitchen work.
Although kitchen chores have changed from the multi-tasking of colonial and early nineteenth-century households – cooking, laundering, preserving, making soap and candles, spinning, and minding children - to common activities taking place in kitchen today like paying bills, doing homework, entertaining, and microwaving popcorn, the kitchen remains the 'heart of the home.'"

Upon walking into the exhibit, we found a little
table (where the girl is sitting) next to a
shelf stacked with cookbooks; on the table
were notepaper, pencils, and a recipe box.
A sign indicated that the blank paper was there for
us to jot down any recipes that caught our attention...
How cute is that?!

The first book my mom found on the shelf.
She immediately turned to me and went, "Oh, Erin...."

I naturally yanked it out of her hands, 
and began scribbling down recipes.
(If you click on the photo, you can read my horrendous
chicken-scratch copy of a hot crab dip recipe.)

Another book that I completely swooned over
(and buying, ASAP!)

Now, on to the exhibit!

The Tucker Kitchen in Wiscasset, Maine, 1921

So cute!

The Mary Frances Cook Book (1912),
Betty Crocker's Cookbook for Boys and Girls (1957),
"Little Fanny" Toy Cast-Iron Stove (1880-1900),
and The Little Lady Oven (1952)

The Koravos Kitchen in Andover, Massachusetts, 1957

Canned goods from 1915 and 1935... so cool!
I have such a fascination with preserved foods;
it's truly like living history!

Kitchen from the 1880s 

My mother and I's personal favorite:
The Coffin Kitchen in Newbury, Massachusetts, 1765


A Chambers Fireless Gas Range from 1920
and a stove from the 1950s.

Gorgeous painting (that I wanted to squeeze in my 
pocket book) by William Sydney Mount of his kitchen.

... Great exhibition!

Afterward, we drove to Port Jefferson, another
New England-y town on the Island (a ferry
from the port goes to Bridgeport, CT daily!)
and got some Fish and Chips at The Village Way


A perfect ending to a pretending-I'm-in-New-England day!


  1. found your blog because of the title...I'm a new england gal (grew up on the south shore and lived in Hyannisport years ago) Love brought me to NY 30 years ago, but i still refer to the Cape area as HOME!! I'm heading to Sandwich for a getaway in a few weeks and might look for the shop you mentioned a few posts back! I still follow a few of my childhood/teen years RULES of the Cape - - always screaming "I see the Bridge" first (even when I am alone in the car) and following the cape mantra "You can do anything you want to do on Cape Cod"!! Seeing the bridge first meant an ice cream, or later a beer and the mantra let us always break the rules...thanks for the walk down memory lane

  2. But Long Island is probably lovely too? It's all fascinating and exotic to me. I love America and can't wait to return. New York and New England next!

    The Clean White Page

  3. Oh..what a wonderful and informative post!! Loved all the pictures and thought what a fantastic way to spend a perfect day with your Mom!

    Of course I thought the 'fish & chips' looked oh so yummy....wish you could package some and send them my


    xoxo Gert

  4. Hi dear Erin! I read all your posts but don't always have time to comment so I'm very sorry for that. I LOVED this post and your sneak peek at America's wonderful historic interesting and adorable! I know you'll make it to Sandwich one day xox Rachel

  5. What a fun exhibit, Erin. Love the old kitchens.

  6. I have that "Flavors of Cape Cod" recipe book in my cupboard. ;) You really do love New England!!! You'll more than likely end up here one day... it happened to me (those location-urges have a way of working themselves out)!

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