The Food History Project
A Kitchen Project Newsletter, May 13, 2011

This is Stephen Block from the
Food History Project

Welcome to the latest edition 
of the Food History 


Thoughts on Mother's Day in the United States
Mother's Day in other Countries

The national holiday in the United States called  Mother's Day was spearheaded by one woman in particular that dearly loved and respected her mother who devoted most of her life to great causes.

The story of this lady Anna Marie Jarvis is an interesting one. She was a career woman and not even a Mother herself.

Andrew's Methodist Episcopal Church
Grafton, West Virginia. Where the first Mother's Day celebration took place. Anna Marie Jarvis's Mother was teaching sunday school her till she passed.


She decided to make a campaign to commemorate Mother's Day and chose the second sunday in May which was May 9th, 1905 the day her mother Ann Marie Reeves Jarvis died.

She started by asking to have a special service in Grafton, West Virginia where she lived
to commemorate her and other Mother's.

She passed out 500 white carnations to all the Mother's there.

She then wrote letters to politicians and any groups that may have any influence to lobby congress to establish the second sunday in May to be Nationally recognized as Mother's Day. It was a long hard process and even quit her job to devote herself fully to this project.

More about what she went through to create Mother's Day Here.

By 1914 Congress passed the bill and President Woodrow Wilson
signed into law that the second sunday in May would be a National Holiday Mother's Day across the nation.

Carnations have come to represent Mother's Day, since Anna Jarvis delivered 500 White carnations at the first celebration in 1908. Many religious services held later adopted the custom of giving away carnations. This also started the custom of wearing a carnation on Mother's Day. The founder, Anna Jarvis, chose the carnation because it was the favorite flower of her mother.

In part due to the shortage of white carnations, and in part due to the efforts to expand the sales of more types of flowers in Mother's Day, the florists promoted wearing a red carnation if your mother was living, or a white one if she was dead; this was tirelessly promoted until it made its way into the popular observations at churches.

Ironically only 9 years later Anna Jarvis was so upset that Mother's Day had become a day for companies to profit with sending just a signed card, flowers or candy, instead of a full nice letter of appreciation to your mom and taking her out to dinner.

She actually started campaigning to rescind Mother's Day and get it stopped. She went door to door trying to get signatures to stop the holiday. In 1930, she was arrested for disturbing the peace by trying to prevent the sale of flowers at a Mother’s Day event. A few years later she was in a sanitarium where she died.

The house that Anna Jarvis grew up in is now a museum.

Here is a nice video on the museum.

Have a Wonderful Muttertag!!!!

Our New Book

Written by my Mother, Aileen Block that patiently took time to record all the events of my grandma's (Oma) life growing up in Germany and immigrating to the United States like so many did to build a new life. Also my dad who has such a good memory helped recall many events of this wonderful story that could have been lost in time.

From Germany with Love

From Germany with Love,
By Aileen Block

This is a nice companion book to Recipes from a German Grandma
From Germany with Love tells the story of my grandma, Emma Block, from growing up in a little town in Baden/ Würtemberg, Germany near Heidelberg named Steinsfurt. Then at the age of 15 immigrating to the United States at the age of 15 taking a train with one of her sisters and brothers to Hamburg and sailing the Atlantic with other hope filled Germans wanting to make a new life in the "New World". Life was not easy but with good values she learned in her German upbringing made a full life and wonderful family with celebration including the great German meals that led us to write the book Recipes from a German Grandma.

I have enjoyed reliving this story over and over to get in touch with my German roots and I feel many of you will feel the same, as you had a beautiful loving German Grandma like we did.


Order Here

sent out 2 day priority mail


Our Family

from a
German Grandma

Browse Through Our Book Here

Comes with over 50 Bonus recipes with Step by Step color pictures.


Order Page

I include
Over 50 Bonus Recipes with Step by Step Pictures

I am very proud of these recipes as they take a lot of the
guess work out of making these fabulous German specialties.

Simply open up the recipes with step by step pictures and print out the item you like. I keep mine in a notebook.

See the Whole List Here of Recipes Here


Apple Kuchen

Apfel Strudel














Old Fashioned Home Made Noodles


German Potato Salad


Potato Dumplings
(Kartoffel Knödel)



Gefulte Nudeln

Chicken and Dumplings

(Sweet and Sour Purple Cabbage)

Potato Pancakes

See the Whole List Here of Recipes Here




Madagascar Vanilla Beans

6 Premium Madagascar
Vanilla Beans

Plus 3 extra vanilla beans!


12 Premium Madagascar
Vanilla Beans

Plus 6 extra vanilla beans!


25 Premium Madagascar
Vanilla Beans

Plus 13 extra vanilla beans!









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My Personal Food History Projects

This is our history of my grandmother and how she came over from Germany at the turn of the century.

Her German heritage blended with the new world and her new family and this is her story and the recipes that go with it.

We discuss our heritage and German recipes and German food history in this newsletter

The German Goodies Newsletter

Here is our Facebook Discussion Page




Stephen Block

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