Antique Recipes

Williamsburg Art of Cookery: Antique Recipe

WmsBurg Art of Cookery is on the spine of this antique cookbook.  Actually, the full title is “The Williamsburg Art of Cookery, or, Accomplish’d Gentlewoman’s Companion: Being a Collection of Upwards of Five Hundred of the Most Ancient and Approv’d Recipes in Virginia.” It is one of the first cookbooks published in “The New World,” published in 1742.  Colonial Williamsburg began reprinting it, with leather binding and with cloth binding, in 1939.   It combines many of the features of contemporary cookbooks and other vintage cookbooks, in that it has recipes borrowed from earlier British cookbooks (always with attribution,) recipes from local cooks, and recipes from local restaurants, like the Market Square Tavern Kitchen.

Williamsbury Art of Cooking: This is the 1955 edition of the 1939 reprint of a 1742 cookbook. Written by Mrs. Helen Bullock. Published by Colonial Williamsburg, Inc., Richmond, Va. 276 pages. Rich brown calf cover in wonderful condition–in PERFECT condition! Binding is still very tight. Pages are printed on rag paper. They are very lightly tanned, but otherwise perfect. Someone took excellent care of this volume. Now you can enjoy it, as well.

Williamsburg Art of Cookery with leather binding was published for many years and sold at Colonial Williamsburg, Richmond, VA. Right now, Vintage Cookbook has one copy that was printed in 1955 and one that was printed in 1990. Of course, the most prized edition is the first reprinted edition, from 1938.


We’ve started posting one great recipe from the most notable cookbooks in our huge inventory of antique, vintage, and rare cookbooks, along with some historical background, to give you some flavor (bad pun) from the cookbooks.  Just for fun and our mutual education!