Researching a Food History Question?


Are you trying to answer a food history question? We offer the following five suggestions.

Check Our Publications

Go to our Kindle eBook list, our Compact Edition booklist, or our Bookshelf Edition booklist and click on individual titles to see short descriptions. Kindle Editions are of course immediately accessible through You can order Compact Editions directly from us. You can order Bookshelf Editions either from or from us, and Amazon's delivery to you may be quicker than ours would be. Some of the print editions may already be available to you at a local museum bookstore.

Consider a Classic Reprint

Reprints of classic cookbooks also assist in gaining insight into early periods of American food history.

Look Through our FoodNotes Articles

Our FoodNotes articles cover a wide variety of food history topics.

Visit Your Local Library, and Used/Rare Bookseller

Your local public library, any university library, and many used/rare bookstores offer opportunities for food history research. One particularly helpful set of vintage books is the Time-Life series Foods of the World, published in the late 1960's and early 1970's, with 27 volumes surveying most major cuisines.

Use a Search Engine


Enter an appropriate group of words into the Google search block shown above (or your preferred search engine). We find that many food history searches are effectively accomplished when the topic words are supplemented by “history” and “origin.” (For example, type into the block “mayonnaise history origin,” examine the results from Google, and then click on the most promising web addresses offered. Subsequent searches may need adjustments in the words submitted, in order to narrow in on the results desired. One very helpful option is to choose the More: Books option for additional Google searches. — And for mayonnaise history, you can also simply see our FoodNotes article “Mayo Info!”)