Tuesday, May 11, 2021

A Mother's Kiss- History of opiates as an Rx for Children

The use of opiates in the United States can be traced as far back as the arrival of the Mayflower in 1620. It is believed that physician Samuel Fuller would have carried laudanum, an opiate used as a pain killer, anti-diarrheal, and sleep-inducing among the Pilgrims.


By the American Revolution, opium was a common medical tool and by the mid-19th century, opiates were the main ingredient in pain killers, even in teething powders.



 

 

One such product, Mrs. Winslow’s Soothing Syrup, was a morphine and alcohol  mixture, marketed to parents of fussy children as a “perfectly harmless and pleasant” way to produce a “natural quiet sleep, by relieving the child from pain.”

















Bayer Aspirin Company made heroin available in a small bottle for ailments such as suppressing a minor cough.


Throughout the 1870s and 1880s, many doctors were slow to heed the warnings about the dangers of opiate addiction of a shortage of other treatments, and inadequate medical instruction

Educating doctors was key to fighting the epidemic. Medical instructors and textbooks from the 1890s regularly delivered strong warnings against overusing opium.

In my new release, A Baker for Bear, when widower Barrett Montgomery fires his housekeeper for dosing his daughters with "soothing syrups", he's forced to accept his family's interference and at least entertain the idea of a mail-order bride.
New Release

A debutante with a stammer, a compulsive widowed blacksmith with two young daughters. Will they find a way to coexist or even better, forge a romantic partnership? 


https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08PDVSNKG

Ada Pike longs to leave the life of a socialite and use her skills as a baker to love and nurture a family. A move to the country will perfectly suit her first steps into life on her own.  

Barrett Montgomery rejects the idea of a mail-order bride. What he needs is a housekeeper- someone he can fire if things don't work out the way he likes. Can a matchmaking agency work miracles to bring two people with opposing goals together? Will they find a way to coexist or even better, forge a romantic partnership?   

About Kimberly Grist:

Kim has enjoyed writing since she was a young girl. However, she began writing her first novel in 2017, "
I wear so many hats working inside and outside the home. I work hard, try harder, and then begin again the next day. Despite my best efforts, sometimes life just stinks. Bad things happen. I need and want an outlet, an opportunity to relax and escape to a place where obstacles are met and overcome." 
Fans of historical romance set in the late 19th -century will enjoy stories combining, History, Humor, and Romance, emphasizing Faith, Friends, and Good Clean Fun. 

Connect with Kimberly:

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/kimberly-grist
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/FaithFunandFriends/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/GristKimberly
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Kimberly-Grist/e/B07H2NTJ71




Monday, May 10, 2021

Sonora, California-After the Gold Rush


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sonora was an early California gold rush town, and one of the early cities incorporated in the state. It had a wild and uncivilized start, but quickly developed into a regional commerce center.

1866 Sonora

Here are some 19th century highlights of early Sonora from about 1860 on:

In 1864, the Sonora Pass passing through the city was opened. It was a toll road that connected the San Joaquin Valley to the west and the foothill communities around Sonora to the communities of eastern California in Mono County. It is now known as State Highway 108.

In 1884, hydraulic mining was outlawed due to the debris (tailings) which filled the river. That form of mining ended in Sonora, but was soon replaced with hard rock mining.

By 1885, the time period in which my book, A Lawyer for Linton is set, Sonora was well established and in need of a large community facility that could be used for various types of entertainment. Citizens had always shown an appreciation for local and traveling entertainment troupes and other community events. The Sonora Opera Hall was the answer to this need.

Star Flouring Mill before it burned

James G. Divoll and Joseph Bray originally built the Star Flouring Mill on the site. They had made their fortune from the Bonanza Mine, which was located just north of the “Red Church.”

In August 1885, the flour mill burned under suspicious circumstances. Many believed that robbers had broken into the mill thinking gold from the Bonanza Mine was stored there.

View from the Opera Hall

After the fire, Divoll and Bray immediately set to using the surviving walls of the flour mill for the Opera Hall. Just three months later, on Christmas Eve 1885, the Opera Hall opened with its first event, a roller skating party. The Opera Hall was active as a community center only until 1896, when the owners decided it was no longer financially viable. After 1896 there were many uses of the building, the longest being the Opera Hall Garage which closed its doors in 1979. The City acquired the Opera Hall in 1985, and through several historic preservation grants and civic contributions, the City was able to restore the building as an elegant community and entertainment center.

Restored Opera Hall, originally built in 1885

Before and after the Civil War, the area suffered a depression. With the placer gold pretty much mined out of the area, Sonora, along with the rest of Tuolumne County experienced a large decrease in population. However, on or around January of 1870, marked by the incorporation of the Guild Mining Company, the area began what is known as Sonora’s second gold rush. Lode mining became important and the city remained the trade hub for the new hard-rock camps. Agriculture and timber operations also contributed to the lasting prosperity of the city.

36 foot diameter log with crew and many others

 Lumber had always been an important industry for Tuolumne County and Sonora. At first, the primary use of the lumber was for mining needs. Then, as homes and businesses were built up, the need for lumber grew. Wood was transported by rivers and channels using water flumes. Also, horse and mule-drawn lumber wagons hauled much of the lumber. The market stayed fairly local for years due to the lack of a railroad to cost–effectively transport lumber far beyond the county. However, with the coming of the railroad, markets for lumber in the mountains surrounding Sonora increased.

In other respects, because the city was remote from the larger population centers in California, some amenities came to Sonora later than they did to other parts of California. The city did not receive electricity until 1982. The railroad—Sierra Railway—did not arrive until 1899. It first paved its roads in 1922. In 1899, a beautiful courthouse was built to replace the former 1853 courthouse, and began service in 1900. It is still in use today.

1900 Tuolumne County Courthouse, Sonora

In spite of that, Sonora became a town that continued to survive and move forward with the rise of mining and lumber into the 20th century.


I greatly enjoyed writing A Lawyer for Linton and setting it in a city I have enjoyed visiting several times. This book is currently available by CLICKING HERE.

 

 

 

 

Sources:

https://www.sonoraca.com/visit-sonora/sonora-california-history/short-history/

https://westernmininghistory.com/towns/california/sonora/

http://www.historichwy49.com/sonora/sonhist.html

http://www.tchistory.org

New Melones Dam from Wikipedia

https://tchistory.org/timber-lumber-industry/

 

Thursday, May 6, 2021

Victorian America's Strawberries by Kristin Holt

 

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries
 

by USA Today Bestselling Author Kristin Holt

 

Victorian America's Strawberries

Strawberries are abundant and lauded throughout Victorian-era cook books and newspapers. Since well before Victoria gained the throne, strawberries have been a seasonal favorite. 

Restaurants served strawberries. 

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Custom hosue Hotel serves strawberries and cream. Advertised in The Evening Post of New York, New York, May 3, 1837.
Proudly serving strawberries and cream! The Evening Post, New York, NY, May 3, 1837.

Even fund-raisers included fresh strawberries!

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. The Young Ladies Missionary Society will give a strawberry and ice cream festival.... The Elyria Democrat of Elyria, Ohio, May 31, 1888.
Victorian cooks prepared a variety of dishes with the berries in season. Just as importantly, housekeepers diligently preserved strawberries for off-season use.

Let's see what Victorian Americans did with strawberries!

Successful Victorian Strawberry Patches

This first article comes all the way from Victoria's coronation year, 1837. Notice the vintage tips to ensure an abundant crop!

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Tips for growing strawberries, from The Pittsfield Sun of Pittsfield, Massachusetts, May 4, 1837.
Strategies for growing strawberries, from The Pittsfield Sun, Pittsfield MA, May 4, 1837.

Growing wisdom continued in newspapers, throughout the Victorian era.

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Management of Strawberry plants, from The Inter Ocean of Chicago, Illinois. December 2, 1875.
Management of Strawberry Plants; The Inter Ocean of Chicago, Illinois. December 2, 1875.

This 1881 article encourages the planting of more than one variety of strawberries. Science at work!

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. To produce larger crops and finer berries, plant several varieties in one bed. Science explained! From The Weekly Star and Kansan of Independence, Kansas, October 13, 1881.
Plant a variety! The Weekly Star and Kansan of Independence, KS. October 13, 1881.

Victorian America's Strawberry Recipes

Victorians feasted on strawberries in season. I'll show you their preserves recipes, too, below.

So, what did Victorian housekeepers (a.k.a. homemaker) do with fresh strawberries?

Victorian Fresh Strawberry Recipes

Serve with sugar and lemon.

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Italian Mode of Preparing Strawberries. Sunbury American of Sunbury, Pennsylvania on January 2, 1841.
Victorians adored jellied desserts. It's no surprise that cooks incorporated fresh strawberries into a moulded dessert.

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Strawberry Jelly Mould recipe from The Complete Confectioner, Pastry-Cook, and Baker, published 1844.
The Complete Confectioner, Pastry-Cook, and Baker, Published 1844.

Oooh! Ice Cream! An at-home Victorian favorite, and also available in ice cream parlors about town.

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Strawberry Ice Cream Recipe, using fresh berries, from Miss Beecher's Domestic Receipt Book Supplement, 1846.
Miss Beecher's Domestic Receipt Book, published 1846.


Another strawberry ice cream.

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Recipe for Strawberry Ice Cream from The Modern Housewife Menagerie, Nearly 1,000 Receipts, published 1851.
 
This "strawberry cream" recipe, known in the Victorian-era as Strawberry Whisk, sounds incredible. Even better than strawberry ice cream--and for this ice cream fan, that's saying something.


Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. (Currant, Raspberry, or) Strawberry Whisk Recipe, using fresh berries, from Miss Beecher's Domestic Receipt Book Supplement, 1846.
Miss Beecher's Domestic Receipt Book, published 1846.

 

Or freeze a strawberry ice without cream, altogether.

 
Let's not forget PIE! Victorians adored pies, including berry pies. Notice one of these cooks the berries, and the other doesn't.
 

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Fresh Berry Pies, including strawberry, from Beedle's Dime Cook Book, published 1864.


Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Ripe Fruit-Pies, including Strawberry. From The new Housekeeper's Manual, Published 1873.
The New Housekeeper's Manual, Published 1873.


Strawberry sauce for baked puddings. Ooh, this sounds good.


Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Strawberry Sauce Recipe, to be served with baked puddings. From Practical Cooking and Dinner Giving, Published 1877.
Practical Cooking and Dinner Giving, Published 1877.
 
 
Don't forget the Strawberry Shortcake!
 
Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Two strawberry shortcake recipes from: Practical Receipts of Experienced Housekeepers, Seventh Presbyterian Church of Cincinnati, published 1874.
Practical Receipts of Experienced Housekeepers, Compiled by the Ladies of the Seventh Presbyterian Church, Cincinnati. Published 1874.


Here's another baked strawberry pie recipe, with a Cream (Raspberry or) Strawberry Tart.


Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Strawberry Pie, Strawbery Tart recipes. From Common Sense in the Household; A Manual of Practical Housewifery, published 1879.
Common Sense in the Household; A Manual of Practical Housewifery, Published 1879.

It's no surprise that Strawberry Shortcake remained popular through the turn of the twentieth century.... and beyond!


Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Recipe for Strawberry Shortcake, from The Boston Globe of Boston, Massachusetts. May 8, 1895.

Victorian Strawberry Preserves

Raspberries and Strawberries are magical in that natural fruit pectin causes the cooked fruit and sugar to set up. Made with mashed fruit, jam results. If the pulp is strained and only the juices are jellied, jelly results. Unless we're talking about a jelly. Different thing. Mostly.

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. (Raspberry or) Strawberry Jam Recipe from an 1846 publication: Valuable Receipts, or Secrets Revealed.

Below, Godey's Lady's Book published recipes for Strawberry Preserves, Strawberry Jelly, and Strawberry Jam.
 

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Recipes for Strawberry Preserves, Strawberry Jelly, and Strawberry Jam. From Godey's Lady's Book Receipts and Household Hints, published 1870.
Godey's Lady's Book Receipts and Household Hints, Published 1870.

We're cooking fancy now! Below, an 1871 recipe (or receipt) for preserving (notice bottles, but no lids) whole strawberries. They'd be a treat come January.

 

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Whole Strawberry Preserves (bottled). From Mrs. Porter's New Southern Cookery Book, Published 1871.
Mrs. Porter's New Southern Cookery Book, Published 1871.
  

...including Beverages 

Miss Catharine Beecher included the following Royal Strawberry Acid. A tasty beverage for invalids and the well alike.

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Recipe for Royal Strawberry Acid beverage, from Miss Beecher's Domestic Receipt Book Supplement, published 1846.
Miss Beecher's Domestic Receipt Book, 1846.

Tea and coffee were staples in Victorian America, but that didn't prevent folks from looking for alternatives. Some options were medicinal, others were used out of desperation, and others simply because they tasted good.

 

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Substitutes for Tea: Raspberry leaves "make a very good substitute for tea..." The American Family Matron on Practical and Scientific Cooking, published 1851.
Don't forget the Strawberry Wine and Strawberry Cordials!

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. Recipes for Strawberry Wine and also for Strawberry Cordial, both from fresh berries. Published in 1878 in Housekeeping in Old Virginia.
Housekeeping in Old Virginia, published 1878.

Strawberries: To Wash, or Not 

Most nineteenth-century cook books and newspaper articles instructed cooks to not wash their berries. Apparently all the flavor would escape in the wash water.

I did find at least one dissenting vote to the no-washing rule.

Kristin Holt | Victorian America's Strawberries. While most recipes and cook books from the nineteenth century tell cooks *not* to wash their berries, an occasional voice argued for washing. From The Columbian Cook Book, Containing Reliable Rules for Plain and Fancy Cooking, published 1892, also Housekeeping in Old Virginia, Published 1878.
Housekeeping in Old Virginia, published 1878 AND The Columbian Cook Book, published 1892.

I'm off to buy fresh berries, in season, and whip up a Victorian-inspired Strawberry Whisk!

Invitation

With so many delicious strawberry recipes, do any call to you to adjust for contemporary baking?

Did you learn something new?

Please scroll down and comment.

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