This gallery contains a few examples of our collaborative recipe digitization project. The following historical recipes were assigned to students to transcribe, contextualize, tag, and submit for archival digitization. 

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RECIPE: Vinegar of the Four Thieves, The Virginia Housewife

Considered by some to be the first American cookbook, The Virginia Housewife was written by Mary Randolph in 1824. It was republished at least nineteen times before the start of the Civil War and continues to be an influence in regional southern and Virginian home cooking. This recipe for vinegar of the four thieves is of particular interest because it serves a medicinal purpose rather than a culinary one. Many cookbooks of this era, specifically those written for women, combined various household topics in one text including cleaning, home medicine, cooking, and more. Today, vinegar of the four thieves, or thieves oil as it is more commonly known now, is popping up in new cookbooks, homesteading blogs, and can be found via hashtag through Instagram. 


RECIPE: Pan de Campo, Rebecca Powell (nd)

This recipe is an example of a personal recipe transcription process in which students would inquire, research, transcribe, and digitize a recipe from their own family collections. This one for pan de campo was written by Rebecca Powell, the instructor's mother. 

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RECIPE: Lemonade (for Diabetic), Southern Historical Collection

This recipe is an example of a historical recipe transcription process in which students would inquire, research, transcribe, and aid or follow the digitization process a recipe from the local archives (ideally the Southern Historical Collection at the Wilson Library at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill). The class would work closely with the library and the archivists to identify any recipes needing transcription, digitization, or just closer investigation and help participate and observe in that process.