The holidays are coming soon, and with it comes house guests! Which means that my office-cum-guest-room needed a serious cleaning and reorganizing.
Y'know when you have an unused space in your house? And it just collects STUFF? That was our guest room. It's still not at 100%, but we're at like, 95%, which is good. A few more trips to the thrift store and we'll be back in business.
As part of this cleanup, I installed a new bookshelf (that I got... a year ago... for my birthday, lol.), pulled ALL of my books out of ALL of their hiding places, dusted down all the surfaces, and reinstalled them. Which means I put hands on every book on food, cooking, and food history I own. And there are a lot of them! A number were gifts that I hadn't even looked at yet. But it was so nice to review everything and not only realize all the treasures I have, but to get excited again for delving into food history of all kinds.
I have my books organized a bit differently perhaps than some. All of my "American" cookbooks I have organized largely chronologically. All of my "foreign" cookbooks I have organized by country/region. And then I have all of my more modern books categorized by type of cookbook - baking, dessert, Christmas (!), food preservation, old-fashioned/country, and vegetarian.
I haven't counted them all, but I'm already planning to get more matching bookshelves (don't they look so nice?) so I can stop squirreling books away in, say, the drawers of what is supposed to be bedroom furniture.
As you can see, I have a bit of a problem, but also a huge opportunity. :D At some point this winter I hope to update the Wassberg Food Library and do some digitizing of some of the cookbooklets in my collection to share with the world, so stay tuned!
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Sarah Wassberg Johnson has an MA in Public History from the University at Albany and studies early 20th century food history.
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