Perhaps one of the more unique set of recipes within the Lynchburg Museum’s collection comes from Dr. John J. Terrell, a Civil War-era doctor who worked out of Old City Cemetery’s Pest House.

Listed on a single sheet of paper, the header “French cooking” scrawled across the top, the recipes were written down alongside love notes and poetry for Terrell’s wife. The poem on the back of the paper, “To My Wife,” was written in 1857, the same year they got married, according to museum staffers.

The piece of paper was discovered in the archives by Lynchburg Museum guide Ellen Glickman as she worked on the museum’s latest pop-up exhibition. It was on display earlier this month during First Friday and has evolved into a bigger project the museum and its staffers will see into the new year.

As she collected items related to her assigned topic — food, cookery, recipes and markets — “the name of the game was finding any recipes I could,” Glickman says.

Discovering the Terrell recipes alongside love notes and poems was an unexpected coup.

She also found individual recipes and cookbooks — including “A Taste of Virginia,” which features recipes paired with different Virginia landmarks, Lynchburg’s Point of Honor among them — as well as artifacts and booklets put out by local companies.

They include a holiday-themed booklet from the Lynchburg Oil Company that features 11 pages held together with a tasseled cord and a short introduction touting its goal to “add variety to tradition and lend ease to your home entertaining;” a booklet from an American Association of University Women tasting luncheon held in 1980, with handwritten notations about some of the recipes; and the 1970-era recipe collection “Look What’s Cooking at Harry Haga’s Annual Cooking School,” which was based on a program held at the old Plaza Theatre in 1973.

Oil Company booklet

A holiday-themed booklet from the Lynchburg Oil Company that features 11 pages held together with a tasseled cord and a short introduction touting its goal to “add variety to tradition and lend ease to your home entertaining" also is included in the museum's collection. 

“She just took it and ran with it,” museum curator Emily Kubota says of Glickman. “I just expected her to pull out a few artifacts. ... She had the idea to make it more interactive and meaningful.”

Over a period of about two and a half months, what’s now called the Lynchburg Recipe Project was born as Glickman and other staffers scanned in some of those original recipes, then printed them out and compiled them into binders so First Friday visitors could page through them.

“It’s always great when people can get as close to our stuff as they can,” Glickman says.

Several museum staff members also made dishes based on some of the recipes, including one for stuffed tomatoes detailed on the Terrell paper, for First Friday, where attendees also were encouraged to copy down recipes that interested them and add their own to the collection.

Now the Lynchburg Recipe Project will be making its way to the Lynchburg Community Market, where the museum will have a semi-permanent booth set up sometime in the new year.

Kubota says they’ll be sharing recipes and gathering new ones but also hope residents will consider sharing other items, ranging from family photos to cookbooks to cooking tools.

“It’s not just recipes [but] ... objects we’re looking for.”

The pop-up exhibit already netted one major contribution: Two cookbooks that likely were used by Amelia Perry Pride, one of Lynchburg’s first black teachers, and her adopted daughter Caroline C. Smith, donated by descendants of Pride.

Amelia Perry Pride 2

A 1902 edition of “The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book,” displayed under glass, has “Amelia E P Pride” written in pencil on the second page and likely belonged to Amelia Perry Pride, one of Lynchburg's first black teachers. 

Pride, among many other accomplishments, founded a cooking school out of her Madison Street home in 1903, work that “had a lasting impact on home economics education in the city’s public school system,” according to exhibition materials. She also was principal of the segregated Polk Street School for 20 years and founded the Dorchester Home for impoverished and elderly black women.

A 1902 edition of “The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book” has “Amelia E P Pride” written in pencil on the second page, according to the exhibit, which theorizes she may have used the book while operating her cooking school.

The other book, 1921’s “A Book of Recipes for the Cooking School” has “Sis C’s book” written on the inside cover, likely referring to Smith, who was taken in by the Pride family when she was 9, according to the museum.

Kubota says Glickman included information about the contributions of African Americans to Virginia culinary history in the exhibit, something that isn’t always recognized when discussing the topic.

“Recipes are really something that’s cross-generational, [across] social classes, race,” Kubota says. “Food is something everyone can understand. The recipes you see reflect all types of backgrounds in Lynchburg.”

Ellen Glickman is the daughter of BH Media Regional Editor Caroline Glickman.


We’ve gathered together some of the recipes featured in the Lynchburg Museum System’s collection, which recently were on display as part of the Lynchburg Recipe Project. Give them a try over the holidays, or take them with you into the new year.

Spicy Punch

2 sticks cinnamon

1 teaspoon whole cloves

¼ teaspoon nutmeg

1 1/3 cups cranberry juice cocktail

2/3 cup ginger ale

Tie spices in a bag and bring to boiling point in juice. Simmer 15 minutes. Add ginger ale and serve immediately.

– From “Greetings with a Holiday Flavor,” a booklet put out by Lynchburg Oil Company, Inc., circa 1950-1970

Frozen Eggnog

3 eggs, separated

3 tablespoons sugar

2 tablespoons rum

2 tablespoons brandy

½ pint cream, whipped

2 tablespoons powdered sugar

Nutmeg

Beat egg yolks until light. Add sugar, then liquor. Blend. Fold in whipped cream. Beat egg whites almost stiff. Add powdered sugar to egg whites, one tablespoon at a time. Beat until stiff. Add gently to egg yolk mixture and fold in a little nutmeg. Pour gently into an 11-by-4 ½ inch tray. Freeze for about 2 hours. Eggnog should not be frozen hard, so serve at once or turn down cold control.

– From “Greetings with a Holiday Flavor,” a booklet put out by Lynchburg Oil Company, Inc., circa 1950-1970

Mock Crab Spread

1 can ham lunch meat

3 hard-boiled eggs

1 small onion

¼ cup mayonnaise

1 ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Salt and pepper

Put first three ingredients through medium blade of food chopper. Add others, and salt and pepper to taste. This is delicious on toast rounds or as celery stuffing.

– From “Greetings with a Holiday Flavor,” a booklet put out by Lynchburg Oil Company, Inc., circa 1950-1970

Stuffed Mushrooms

20 medium-sized mushrooms

2 tablespoons butter

1 medium onion, chopped

¼ cup green pepper, diced

Touch garlic salt

Mushroom stems

½ cup cracker crumbs

3 tablespoons Parmesan cheese

1 teaspoon parsley

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon oregano

1/3 cup chicken broth

Wash mushrooms. Remove and chop stems. Melt butter. Saute onion, pepper, garlic salt and stems until tender, not brown. Mix cracker crumbs, Parmesan, parsley, salt and oregano, and add to onion mixture. Mix chicken broth and stir into above mixture. Stuff into mushroom caps, rounding tops. Place caps in shallow baking pan (stuffing up). Place ¼ inch water in bottom of pan. Bake uncovered at 325 degrees for 25 minutes.

– From the booklet “American Association of University Women Tasting Luncheon,” held March 8, 1980, in Lynchburg

Wisconsin Party Cheese Ball

4 cups shredded cheddar cheese

2 3-ounce packages cream cheese

1/3 cup mayonnaise

2 teaspoons sherry flavoring

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/8 teaspoon onion salt

1/8 teaspoon garlic salt

½ cup chopped ripe olives

1/3 cup minced dried beef

1/3 cup minced fresh parsley

Combine cheese, mayonnaise, flavoring, Worcestershire sauce, salts and blend until smooth. Add olives. Cover and chill until firm. Combine beef and parsley and roll ball in. Cover and chill.

Variation: Substitute finely chopped pecans or chopped olives for dried beef.

Yield: Makes one 5’’ ball

– From “Look What’s Cooking at Harry Haga’s Annual Cooking School,” based on a program held at the Plaza Theatre in 1973

Pennsylvania Dutch Potatoes

4 Idaho baking potatoes

1 tablespoon butter

1 small carton whipping cream

Salt

Pepper

Wash the potatoes. Boil for 20 to 30 minutes, or until fork goes in easily. Let potatoes cool. Store in refrigerator until the next day.

Next day: Peel the potatoes. Grate potatoes on the next to the largest side on grater. With 1 tablespoon butter, grease a casserole dish. Put a layer of potatoes, then salt and pepper lightly. Add another layer of potatoes, etc. Pour the contents of a carton of whipping cream (not whipped) over the potatoes. Bake ½ hour at 37 degrees. Potatoes should be bubbly and lightly golden. Serves 8-10.

– From the booklet “American Association of University Women Tasting Luncheon,” held March 8, 1980, in Lynchburg

Roasted stuffed onions

1 piece white or whole wheat bread

6 large onions

¾ cup soft bread crumbs

¾ cup finely chopped mushrooms

1 cup buttered cracker crumbs

2 ½ teaspoons dry mustard

1 ½ teaspoons thyme

Salt and pepper to taste

½ cup chopped almonds

Place piece of bread in your mouth, with part extending out to chin level. (The bread will absorb the onion odors and prevent crying.)

Peel onions and hollow out center of onion. Cut slices from bottom of onion so onions stay upright while roasting. Combine all other ingredients and stuff into onions. Place onions around roast during the last hour of roasting.

– From “Look What’s Cooking at Harry Haga’s Annual Cooking School,” based on a program held at the Plaza Theatre in 1973

Hot Cross Buns with Baking Powder

2 cups flour

4 teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

¼ cup sugar

2 tablespoons butter

¾ to 1 cup milk

1 egg

¼ cup currants

Mix dry ingredients, chop fat into the flour with a knife, mix part of the milk with the egg, and slowly add sufficient of the liquid to make a dough not too soft to be handled. While adding the liquid, mix in the currants also. Toss and roll dough gently on a slightly floured board, and cut in large rounds. Just before baking mark with a cross on top using a sharp knife; brush with beaten egg. Bake 12 to 15 minutes in a moderately hot oven. Serves 6 to 8.

– From 1921’s “A Book of Recipes for the Cooking School,” recently donated to the Lynchburg Museum by Dr. Martin Walton and Barbara Walton

Cracker pudding

1 quart “sweet” milk

1 cup crushed soda, or saltine, crackers

½ cup coconut

¾ teaspoon salt

1 ½ cups sugar

2 egg yolks, slightly beaten

Meringue:

2 egg whites

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 tablespoons sugar

Scald milk. Add crushed crackers, coconut, salt, sugar and mix well. Beat egg yolks. Pour approximately 1 cup of hot milk mixture over yolks and blend well. Return yolk mixture to hot mixture and cook over medium heat until thickened. Set aside while preparing meringue.

Prepare meringue by beating egg whites until foamy. Add sugar gradually and continue beating on high speed. Add vanilla. Fold meringue into hot milk mixture. Chill and serve.

- From “Look What’s Cooking at Harry Haga’s Annual Cooking School,” based on a program held at the Plaza Theatre in 1973

Turkey Pancakes (for leftovers) 

2 tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

½ tsp. mace

½ tsp. nutmeg

1/8 tsp. thyme

2 cups cubed cooked turkey

3 tbs. melted butter

1 cup milk

1 small onion, grated

Sift dry ingredients. Add butter and milk. Beat well. Add turkey and onion and beat again. Fry as you would regular pancakes. Serve with cranberry sauce.

– From “Greetings with a Holiday Flavor,” a booklet put out by Lynchburg Oil Company, Inc., circa 1950-1970

Casey Gillis is the features editor at The News & Advance and editor of weekly entertainment publication The Burg. Reach her at (434) 385-5525.

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