by Judy Howard

          All profits go to feed starving children

        More than simply a cookbook, 1905 Pioneer Cookbook—Slices of Life combines unpretentious, delectable recipes with a glimpse into the lives of those courageous, God-fearing pioneer women who left family, friends and the comforts of first homes tohomestead a hostile and barren landscape before Oklahoma became a state.
           Illustrated with vintage photos and 1905 advertising of local merchants offering everything from cook stoves to buggies, harnesses to artificial eyes, this captivating collection contains more than one hundred recipes. A sampling of the favorites includes salt rising bread, rusks, corn fritters, graham gems, ginger tea cakes, Oklahoma’s Delight, hot slaw, potato stuffing for goose or duck, cream sweet breads, snow eggs and suet pudding.
           In 1888, Edmond consisted of only the Santa Fe railroad watering and refueling station with its water tower, coal bin, “necessary” outhouse and a two room red boiler house occupied by John and Cora Steen and their eighteen-month-old son Charles. Cora provided the only hot meal for passengers and crew between Texas and Kansas and, in this cookbook, she shares her most requested recipes.
          The night of April 22, 1889, after the gun reverberated opening up for settlement the Unassigned Indian Lands, hundreds of campfires burned across Oklahoma’s barren wilderness frontier with the tantalizing aroma of coffee and bacon. Just seven and one-half months after the Land Run, the Edmond Sun announced that the Ladies of the Christian Church had organized a “Willing Workers” Society. One month later they organized the Women’s Board of Missions with the Motto, “The love of Christ constraineth us.” These are the women who compiled the favorite recipes of the ladies of Edmond.
          By 1902 the Ladies Aid Society and Missionary Society CWBM, met weekly in homes sharing their affluence with a needy Edmond community by providing clothing and quilts. The quilters met every Wednesday in the church basement quilting tops for a $25 donation.
        These recipes with cameos of the individual contributors will renew your hope, inspire your faith as they transport you back into the hearts and lives of everyday pioneer heroines through our universal passion for food, family and community fellowship. Each brave contributor overcame insurmountable obstacles in this scary new land. Each leaves behind a legacy of love and faith and darned good cooking to future generations of today’s hungry “pioneers.”     
        Without the love, sacrificial work, dedication and faith in God of these early pioneer women, it’s unlikely that Oklahoma would have become the great state it is.

“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. By faith
Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed
and went, even though he did not know where he was going. By faith he made his home in
the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and
Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the
city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.” Hebrews 11:1, 8-10 NIV