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Period cookbooks are the best sources for authentic recipes, menu suggestions, table settings and serving tips.

Unfortunately, most public libraries do not own old cookbooks. Period cookbooks can be identified with the Library of Congress catalog and state or city library catalogs.

Your librarian can help you identify nearby libraries with historic culinary collections or try to borrow them.

Reader's Guide to Periodical Literature, Wilson The librarians at your local public library can help you with this.

Use the subject headings "menus" "meals" and "dining" to locate articles printed in popular magazines such as the Ladies Home Journal, Family Circle, Good Housekeeping, American Home, Better Homes and Gardens, and Southern Living.

Your librarian can help you obtain the articles you need. Find a library that owns these magazines for the decade you want.

Browse them for recipes, food ads, table decorations, and party tips.

Use the New York Public Library & Los Angeles Public Library's digital menu collections to identify what was served in all types of restaurants during the decade in question. ) we can help you find dedicated books, museums and historic societies.

If you need menus from a specific place and time (1900 Atlantic City? ) or menus for specific type of restaurant (Railroad dining car? Food in the USA 1900-1910 During the early decades of the 20th century, Americans foods reflected the great diversity of people living in our country.

What people ate depended primarily upon who they were (ethnic heritage, religious traditions), where they lived (regional food preferences: New Orleans Creole, New England founding father? Food manufacturers flooded our markets with new "covenience" foods, such as Jell-O. Immigration Waves of immigrants introduced new foods and flavors.

) and how much money they had (wealthy railroad tycoon? Most immigrants settled in urban areas, many opened restaurants and imported foods.

The first Italian-style pizzeria opened in New York City 1905. Science & Technology Advances in transportation, food preservation, and home storage began to equalize local food availability and lessen dependence upon seasonal variations.