Mabry-Hazen House reprints historic Southern Appalachian cookbook

Betsy PickleFeature, Our Town Stories

Food culture in Knoxville is taking a step forward by revisiting the past, thanks to Mabry-Hazen House.

In partnership with Storyhaus Media, Mabry-Hazen House – the longtime family home-turned-museum just east of downtown Knoxville at 1711 Dandridge Ave. – is reprinting “The Tennessee & Virginia Cookbook,” first published in 1911.

 “We are thrilled to bring back this mostly forgotten piece of Knoxville and Southern Appalachian history,” Patrick Hollis, executive director and curator of Mabry-Hazen House, said in a press release. Mabry-Hazen is celebrating the 160th anniversary of the home this year.

One of the original copies of “The Tennessee and Virginia Cook Book” was discovered after a fire two years ago in the museum’s collection room. The cookbook is a compilation of around 1,000 recipes and cooking tips provided by women members of First Presbyterian Church of Knoxville and Central Presbyterian Church of Bristol, Va. It documents the cooking styles and techniques and the favorite dishes of more than 200 women from Southern Appalachia.

The new hardcover version

“With Knoxville’s burgeoning culinary reputation, it was incredible to find another link to the city’s food history,” said Hollis, who edited the reprinted version.

The Hazen family belonged to First Presbyterian Church, and Alice Mabry Hazen contributed about a dozen recipes to the cookbook. Only a handful of copies of the original edition are known to survive in the United States. The family’s 1858 home and its possessions were converted into the Mabry-Hazen House museum in 1992.

The limited-edition reprint in hardback with a dust cover is available for $49 here. Proceeds from the book’s sales will support the mission of the Hazen Historical Museum Foundation as well as the church congregations of the original authors.


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