The Way to a Man's Heart. “The Settlement Cook Book” - Mrs. Simon Kander. Mrs. Henry Schoenfeld 1903 - Under the Auspices of “The Settlement”, Milwaukee - Second Edition One of the most influential and successful American cook books of the twentieth century. ‘The first classic collection of immigrant recipes’.

Extremely rare in any of the first three editions, it is believed that only one complete copy exists of the first 1,000 copies published in 1901, which was followed by this enlarged 1903 edition of 1,500 copies. It can be reasonably assumed that they were purchased to be used in the kitchen, making it extraordinary that any of the first two printings in their delicate white-coated art nouveau illustrated covers exist at all (the only complete surviving original example of the 1901 edition is housed in the Milwaukee Public Library, Lizzie Black Kander’s own copy (incomplete) with notes and amendments for the second edition resides in the Milwaukee Co. Historical Society Research Library). A third and further enlarged edition was published in 1907.

The Settlement Cook Book began its life as a fundraiser for the Jewish Settlement House in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, however the recipes were not kosher and included lobster and shellfish. There are also many dishes of German origin, reflecting the German Jewish community in Milwaukee. The chapter on Kuchen includes those called Coffee or Sugar, Tarts, Good, Bundt, Apple, Poppy Seed, Berliner Pfann, Cheese and Blueberry as well as Filled Walnut Kipfel and Schnecken. Among the Jewish dishes were Matzos Pancakes, Matzos Balls, Filled Fish, Kugel, Matzos Pudding. Many of the recipes present an amalgam of German, Eastern European and Jewish cooking.

By 1991 over two million copies of
The Settlement Cook Book had been sold, in more than 40 editions.
  Upon the first printing, The Settlement Cook Book was an immediate success and was reprinted, in revised and enlarged editions, until almost the beginning of the 21st century. It was, or course, totally unrecognisable in its later printings. However, funds were raised for all kinds of charitable causes in Milwaukee for the first seventy-five years of its life. A rather remarkable contribution.

A completely revised and updated version, renamed
The New Settlement Cookbook, edited by Charles Pierce, was issued in 1991, subtitled The First Classic Collection of American Ethnic Recipes. In his introduction, Pierce gives a brief history of the book under consideration. He tells us that when Lizzie Black Kander (1858–1940) and the other women who worked with the immigrant population flooding into Milwaukee asked the Board for money ($18) to publish this recipe book, the Board turned it down as an "unnecessary expense”. The women then decided to publish it themselves. So, in 1901, a cookbook was born (174 pages, including the advertisements). The first printing of 1,000 copies was quickly sold out and a second and enlarged edition of 1,500 copies was published in 1903. Thus began an American tradition. By the way, when the Board refused to grant the money requested by the women, they did give the project their blessing and said that they would "be happy to share in any profits." How fortunate they were! The proceeds of the first two editions enabled the committee to purchase a site for the new Settlement House. And, as indicated above, Milwaukee charities benefited from the sales of this book for about 75 years.

References: Not in Cagle & Stafford, American Books on Food & Drink. Bitting, Gastronomic Bibliography 253 (earliest listed is the 7th edition of 1915).
8vo. [2] xii [12] ad [2] 182 [16] ad. Original white cloth, lettered and decorated in black.

Noted copies of the 1901 first edition. 1 – The comprehensive Settlement Cook Book Company archives collection is housed at the Milwaukee Co. Historical Society Museum (www.milwaukeehistory.net/manuscript/settlement-cook-book-company/), in it is only one partial copy of the 1901 edition with Mrs Kander’s hand written notes and editorial changes to be applied to the second edition. 2 – The Milwaukee Public Library’s ‘Central Art Rarities’ department owns the only known complete copy of the first edition (https://encore.mcfls.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb1352584), this has also been confirmed in 2013 by the New York Public Library (www.nypl.org/blog/2013/07/30/early-charity-cookbooks).

Editions – First 1901, Second 1903, Third 1907, Fourth 1910.
  Condition: A very good copy, with exceptionally strong lettering to the front boards, and only light soiling, some rubbing to rear cloth, front joint cracked; scattered signs of kitchen usage but in the main, spick and span.   Ref: 102733   Price: HK$ 15,000