Mail Call! (Some New Items!)

If you’ve ever wondered what “mail call” looks like around here, it can be all over the place! After so many years, I have come the conclusion that acquisitions work is really a master juggling act. There are items you think are coming to your door, items you know are, items you have that are waiting for your attention, and plenty of surprises! Yesterday, I got one of last category: an envelope stuff with one of my favorite things–pamphlets!

Collection of culinary pamphlets in a pile on a wood table
Collection of culinary pamphlets

This is the pile fresh from the envelope. I spread it all out on the table…

Culinary pamphlets spread out on a wood table
Culinary pamphlets

…and of course, my eyes lit up as I found some of my favorite topics: cocktails, gelatin, and Betty Crocker:

"Betty Crockers Continental Casseroles" pamphlet
“Betty Crockers Continental Casseroles” pamphlet
"Chalmers Granulated Gelatine" pamphlet
“Chalmers Granulated Gelatine” pamphlet–with a few friendly nibble marks on the corner!

Of course, in the south, you can’t look far without finding something about barbecue!

"Barbecue" trifold pamphlet
“Barbecue” trifold pamphlet

There are a lot of treasures in this package and I’m still sorting through. Some items will go in our Culinary Pamphlet Collection (Ms2011-002) and some will go for cataloging and be added to our book collection.

One other item that stood out is this pamphlet of “cookmarks.” The pages are perforated, and each one has two bookmarks with space to indicate the book, page number, and notes about the recipe!

"Cookmarks" pamphlet with individual cookbook bookmarks
“Cookmarks” pamphlet with individual cookbook bookmarks

As you can see, they even have quotes and illustrations!

One of the best part of being an acquisitions and processing archivist is that even when you think you know what materials you’re getting for the collections, you don’t! Surprises can show up on your doorstep and make your day!


Better Barbecues & Picnics (and Homes & Gardens)

I don’t know about you, Readers, but I’m wondering how September arrived so quickly. The end of summer is around the corner (gulp). The good news is, we have a three day weekend ahead of us! If you’re throwing a last “hurrah” picnic, BBQ, or cookout, today’s post should be an inspiration (for better or worse). Back in late June/early July, I had a short exhibit in our display cases, sharing books and publications on picnicking. This morning I picked one of the (literally) more colorful items to blog about. I can’t promise an intellectual discussion on the merits of gas v. charcoal, but I can guarantee lots of corn husks, food on skewers, and hot dogs. Oh, and some 1960s neon shades of color. This week, we’re featuring Barbecues and Picnics (1963) from the Better Homes & Gardens Creative Cooking Library series. I hope you like bacon…

In addition to this title, the Creative Cooking Library series also includes: Best BuffetsBirthdays and Family CelebrationsLunches and BrunchesMeals in MinutesMeals with a Foreign FlairSnacks and Refreshments and So-Good Meals. The History of Food and Drink Collection includes all 8 publications, so we can help you find something for every occasion!

Enjoy your Labor Day as we begin to say goodbye to summer! (Oh, and say “Hello!” to college football season, as we will in Blacksburg this weekend–Go Hokies!)