In Ella’s time there was no running to Dan and Whit’s to grab supper.  Just about everything they ate came off the farm. Cooking was on a wood stove, and food was canned, dried for future use, or stored in a cool basement. This often meant the same meals day after day, especially in the early summer when the main vegetable from the garden was “greens”. Dinner was served midday, and was the main meal of the day. Supper was a simple meal later in the day.

Mina Sargent, wife of Ella’s relative, Dorrance, at her wood stove on their farm in Norwich. Photograph courtesy of the Dartmouth College Library.

During the decade before and after 1900, Ella occasionally mentioned having “boiled victuals” for dinner. After researching, I’m not sure I know what Ella’s boiled victuals are. I would love to hear from readers who have heard family stories about boiled victuals being served during this time period, and what they might have included.

This week’s longer entry reminds us that cooking every day was just part of the work around the farm.