Browsing through the “Personal Mention” column of early newspapers readers
learn about the social lives of local residents. Visits by out-of-town guests, business trips,
trips to see friends and relatives elsewhere, dinner parties, and other
entertainments were all regularly included.
|Elizabeth Silversteen’s Kitchen Diary.|
Throughout the early and mid-1900s prominent families, like Joseph and
Elizabeth Silversteen often hosted dinner parties, dances, bridge parties, and
croquet, tennis and horseshoe matches on the lawn.
Elizabeth Silversteen’s “Kitchen Diary” reflects daily menus and occasionally
names of dinner guests. Dinner typically
included soup, meat, two or three vegetables and a dessert. Christmas dinner was turkey and oysters,
dressing, steamed tomatoes, rice and gravy, sweet potatoes, pickles, cranberry
sauce, celery, pineapple salad, coffee, mince pie and candy. The diary appears to date from 1918 or 1919.
The Silversteen’s youngest daughter was a classically trained contralto
with a love for folk music. During her musical
career Adelaide used the name Adelaide Van Wey.
She toured in the U.S., Mexico, and Central America. She performed at famed locations such as
Carnegie Hall and Radio City’s Rainbow Room, as well as on radio and
television. She also produced several
|The Silversteen’s dining room.|
Adelaide claimed, “My first love is music. My second is cooking and writing about the
kitchen.” For 15 years she wrote a
weekly column about cooking and shared recipes.
Her first “Cook’s Corner” article was published in the Transylvania
Times on March 5, 1953. Her final column
was published three days after her death on March 21, 1968.
Her final column included recipes for Strawberry Charlotte Russe, Rice
Pudding, Bride’s Pudding, Banana Pudding and Apricot-Brandy Sauce. She ended with, “Thought for Food from My Red
Rocker: Pudding seems to taste even
better when served in an attractive container or in individual small
containers. Good appetite.”
Silvermont 2nd Floor House Museum is open (2-4 pm) the 3rd Friday of
each month or by special appointment.
information for this column are provided by the Rowell Bosse North Carolina
Room, Transylvania County Library. Visit
the NC Room during regular library hours (Monday-Friday) to learn more about
our history and see additional photographs.
For more information, comments or suggestions contact Marcy at [email protected] or