Monday, June 10, 2019

"When they fall ill -- of course they must"

This 1861 sketch "dining under difficulties" depicted the large hoop skirt dilemma; but food "dripping with grease," bread made with "strong alkalies" and twenty dishes at breakfast lead to taking "loads of all the medicines."

In Nichols' 1864 book, Forty years of American life -

"The Americans, like the English, have a lack of skill in cookery. They make dishes enough. A common breakfast bill of fare will comprise twenty dishes.  

But butter and lard are so cheap that they are used with great profusion, and the best viands and vegetables are rendered indigestible. Hot bread, made with lard and strong alkalies, and soaked with butter; hot griddle cakes, covered with butter and syrup; meats fried in fat or baked in it; potatoes dripping with grease; ham and eggs fried in grease into a leathery indigestibility—

all washed down with many cups of strong Brazil coffee—these are some of the nice things which Americans eat for breakfast, and when they fall ill—of course they must—then come loads of all the medicines advertised in their newspapers or given by their doctors."
Nichols, Thomas.  Forty years of American life.   London: 1864   v.1

Thomas Low Nichols (1815-1901), born in NH, went to Dartmouth to peruse writing, and left the US for England at the start of the Civil War in 1861.   Links to his books on line - HERE

"Dining under difficulties"  Harper's Magazine April 27, 1861

©2019 Patricia Bixler Reber
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