Written By: Adina Vega
Edited By: Michelle Sosa
Nestle and one of her many books on food and politics.
The Marion Nestle Food Studies Collection, housed at New York University’s (NYU) Special Collections department, was created to document the evolution of cuisine and food practices in 19th and 20th century America, with a specific focus on the food habits of New York City. The collection has since grown to include international and other historical periods. It supports students, faculty, and other researchers studying food management, nutrition, and American history. Because of the size and variety of the collection, the materials are also helpful to writers, journalists, chefs, and food professionals.
Named after the esteemed NYU professor and author of such groundbreaking titles as “Food Politics” and “What To Eat,” Nestle’s scientific credentials and information on food politics, science, and history have been vital in informing generations of activists, policymakers, and retailers.
Cecily Brownstone cooking in her Greenwich Village kitchen, 1947.
The collection has several archival and print components, but the biggest and most well-known is The Cecily Brownstone Collection of American Cookery. Brownstone (1909-2005) was the Associated Press food correspondent for nearly 40 years and was a collector and foremost authority on all things food. Her collection includes over 8,000 cookbooks, 5,000 food pamphlets, and hundreds of letters.
Another spectacular part of the archives is the Dalia Carmel Collection, which focuses on Jewish culinary traditions, Middle Eastern food, and community cookbooks. Ms. Carmel was known as a collector and preserver of culinary history and was interviewed for the Voices of the American Food Revolution project; her interview can be found here.
Click here for more information on the Marion Nestle Food Studies Collection. Let’s eat!