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Bringing primary sources to life in the kitchen and classroom

Interview with a professor and open education librarian at Wake Forest University about creating a research-based digital classroom: Domestic Knowledge. (48 mins with transcript)
Published onJul 27, 2023
Bringing primary sources to life in the kitchen and classroom

In this Spotlight interview, we chat with Stephanie Koscak and Kyle Denlinger of Wake Forest University about Domestic Knowledge. This community originates from a class that Stephanie taught, called “Wives, Writers, and Witches: Women and Gender in Early Modern Europe” and focused on recipe collections based at the Wellcome Library in London. Part of this particular part of the course aimed at making the resources within the Wellcome Library more accessible: the library has scans of the books, but for the class, students transcribed the cursive Old English, provided historical and cultural context for the recipes with research, and in some cases even recreated the recipes.

We were really curious to learn more about the interplay of showing the primary source with original research by students, what it means to involve students in the research process, and creating an engaging online classroom.

SUMMARY KEYWORDS: Recipe, students, transcription, writing, publish, collections, library, 18th century, primary sources.

45 minute audio. Interactive transcript below.

Sarah Gulliford 00:00

Yeah, thank you, Kyle and Stephanie for joining me to talk about the communities at Wake Forest, and specifically, we want to dig into Domestic Knowledge for this Spotlight.

Could you both start with a brief introduction to yourselves and your role at Wake Forest, and a little bit about Domestic Knowledge?

Kyle Dellinger (KD) 00:20

So I'm Kyle Denlinger. I'm the Digital Pedagogy and Open Education Librarian at the Z. Smith Reynolds Library here at Wake Forest. I've been at Wake for 10 years, and kind of the entire time I've been advocating for open education in various capacities. I connected with Stephanie on this project that kind of ticked all of my boxes in terms of potential for openness and the ways I can lend my skills and my interest to moving the project forward.

Stephanie Koscak (SK) 01:01

I’m an associate professor of history, I focus mostly on early modern Britain at Wake Forest University. I teach this class on women and gender and early modern Europe, and much of the class is organized around early modern recipe books, or receipt books, which manuscript recipes for anything from like household goods or cleaning to medicines, to Cookery, to veterinary care. They're really such a hodgepodge. I taught the class in the fall of 2020 for the first time. As part of what we did in the class, we had created this website (using Google Sites) with transcriptions of recipe books from the 18th century, primarily held at the Wellcome Library. Many of these, or I think all of them, are actually completely Creative Commons license, so anybody can use them. We had also had students recreate early modern recipes and wrote research essays about topics related to our class.

[We found that] Google Sites just wasn't really cutting it for us anymore. It had some features I liked. I talked to Kyle, almost a year ago now, and we were sort of brainstorming what what would be the best kind of platform to host these student publications and recipes sort of going forward. We started moving everything over to PubPub, and created our community there earlier this year.

KD 02:42

Yeah, I'll add a little bit to that. I've worked in the past with Stephanie's colleague who’s been producing kind of an open access book since 2019. I've kind of been the behind the scenes (but also not quite behind the scenes) person who’s leading that effort to produce and publish student generated essays on various primary source artifacts on gender, and sexuality and world history. That's actually one of our [Wake Forest’s] communities. We were using PressBooks at the time and it worked well for the first few editions. We found ourselves in this place, though, that where it was getting increasingly difficult to have students engage with the content on the platform, but also to get their own content into the platform. Toward the end of the publication process, there was a ton of work on my end just reformatting student chapters. It was just a huge lift toward the end of the semester to get student work ready for presentation and for them take pride in them before this semester ended.

So I was looking around for different platforms. My team in the library is focused on digital humanities, and digital scholarship, generally. We started a small publishing imprint, which is still kind of determining what it wants to be at this point. But we were looking around for platforms that would support [digital humanities] specifically. Part of my interest in finding a platform with ease of use from the student side, so students wouldn't have to learn a ton of coding or anything like that. They wouldn't even have to necessarily have used the tool before. And that was what I was finding a little bit difficult about other platforms. It required too much knowledge to be useful in the 15 week semester. And then we found PubPub and it was as easy as writing a Google Doc, as long as they were added to the site. They didn't have to know categories or tags or anything like that: it was just waiting for them to go. And I feel like it hit all of our needs from the classroom perspective. But also, as we look out to potential users for faculty scholarship, it's equally impressive there.

SG 05:36

Yeah, I know that we really appreciate that you found us. We always like seeing a new Wake Forest community pop up on our on our feed. You know that it's going to be interesting, and you know, student-led, and probably really scholarly and educational. I always like finding new Wake Forest communities. I know there's many of them. I liked what you said about the ease of the platform use. I mean, that's something that we're really focused on. But I mean, just in general, many editorial systems are really. . . I don't want to say clunky. . . but they do require a lot of lift and expertise.

KD 06:20

For my application here, the students certainly don't have a lot of time to invest in learning a platform, the faculty I'm working with don't always have a ton of time to invest. And while there is a learning curve to PubPub, it's kind of quirky and how it organizes things in the back end, as you all probably know, once it clicks, it starts to make sense. So

SK 06:51

Can I also just add to I think the thing that really appealed to me about using PubPub, Kyle, was that it still allows students to be creative to a certain extent with how they sort of create their pubs with how they customize them, the images, they add the headers, etc. But it also allowed us to kind of rein things in just a bit, because that was one of the difficulties with our Google site. We really couldn't create consistency across the site. There was just no way to really do that. I really liked that aspect of of PubPub. So it's easy for students to use and allowed them to be creative, but also it allowed some kind of guide rails to be to be sort of put in place for us.

KD 07:33

It wasn't just the the wild west of creativity, it gave them limited options and boundaries in which to be creative. That was helpful.

Sarah Gulliford 07:43

Yeah, I heard that from other communities that focus on classroom-based learning, that PubPub allows students to focus on like the scholarship that they're doing, rather than trying to be a publisher themselves.

I feel like that both of you mentioned that some of the projects that you're that you're working on, like Domestic Knowledge looks at these like primary sources.

It sounds like the primary sources that you're using are also like an open, open source or open access.

SK 08:15

So what we did this semester was we focused on transcribing just over half of a single recipe book anonymously written possibly by many contributors in England in the first half of the 18th century. And so one of the [skills] the students. . . the skill they really were sort of gaining through this process was the skill of like reading early modern handwriting, or paleography. And I love that the Wellcome Library makes all of these digital images of their recipe books available for us to use. But it was difficult, you know, especially when students don't even read cursive anymore, for the most part. But I think it really gave them a sense of like, what it's like to work with primary sources, especially things that are not published. . . like how the diversity of women's experiences can be recorded, and these kind of mundane sort of every day kind of artifacts that are kept within a family before, kind of haphazardly, one day finding themselves in an archive or finding itself in an archive. But the thing I really liked was that we have this section of our website with the recipes. And we did use another platform for the transcription, From The Page, which which worked well. But once the students transcriptions were finally on our Domestic Knowledge community, when they were recreating their recipes and their reflections or writing about research that and referred back to those recipes, I loved how we were able to establish those connections across the community.

And Kyle was able to really quickly show students how we did that for various parts of this sort of website, process or project. But then, by the third part, where students are reading their own research essays, they really establish those connections themselves. And it was it was really easy for them to do. I really appreciated that you could like connect that primary source that they worked on transcribing, so that anybody can read it, like somebody who can't read your handwriting. And it's keyword searchable. But then they connect that back to the research. And it's all right there in our community. Kyle, what do you want to add to that? I feel like you were really essential to helping us figure out how to move the transcription to the community itself.

KD 10:51

Yeah, that was I think the biggest lift and it was great to have folks from the Knowledge Futures teams to help with that. We worked with Knowledge Futures’ Community Service to migrate a lot of students’ previous content from the Google site to the PubPub community.

And not only that, but also all of the newly transcribed recipes. They helped us migrate those as well. So that was extremely helpful. And we couldn’t have done it without that additional support, probably would have had to find some kind of support here locally, which would have been a big ask, I think, but it was great to have that service available to us.

But the process for getting those recipes from our transcription platform, into PubPub involves a few different steps. So one is going to be to create the pub and give it appropriate metadata. So we had to first determine what is the naming convention for a recipe? Like how do we tie the recipe to the actual book? And how do we reference the book? How do we reference the page from which that recipe came? And that was a whole conversation as each pub, a page from the book? Or is each pub a recipe? And I think I'll come back to this that in a second. And I don't get to remind me. But we had to figure out also how to get like the facsimile image of the recipe on the pub? How do we bring the text that students had transcribed into the pub? And how do we make it all look good and link back to the transcription and connect the recipe to student research that they also wrote in PubPub, or recreations of the recipe etc. So there was a lot of moving parts to this. And some processes that could probably be improved at the manual.

Copying and pasting of the recipes was not the the most efficient way to do it, I think. But I think that's kind of what we have to think for now. But I really appreciated that PubPub has so many different affordances for just doing different things. So in order to get that image of the page, or of the recipe itself, my colleague here in the library created a specific tool that I can use to point an iFrame to a specific part of an image in an IIIF manifest. And that is something I could use to generate a link that I could bring back to the pub, and use multimedia use media tool to embed that iframe at the top of the page. So that was extremely useful.

But again, it's one of those things that if we were looking forward to feature requests, it would be really amazing thing to have either a more flexible iFrame tool, or an a natively integrated IIIF. And for those that are not familiar, IIIF is the International Image Interoperability Framework, which allows cultural heritage institutions to have a folder essentially, or directory, have all of their images online and just point different viewers to that folder. So they can view them and manipulate them in different ways without altering the original, and annotate them in different ways, etc. So I'm just scratching the surface of that but I think there's a ton more to learn in this project helped me explore some of that. But coming back to that idea of whether the recipe pub should be an entire page or the specific recipe. We started thinking about how recipe books could have been engaged with, you know, in the 18th century, right? They were, of course, looking at the whole page, but the recipes themselves were not necessarily are ordered in any meaningful way. Right? They were just written down in the order in which they were written down. Some not always, but, you know, many times. And so we decided to make each pub its own standalone recipe, which involved another layer of kind of manual copying and pasting. But I think the result is that we have essentially a repository of recipes that can be mixed together in new and interesting ways. And we can create a whole a whole collection of say, desserts or medicines, not necessarily books from the same recipe, or not necessarily recipes from the same book, as we continue doing this for more books. We could have a way to compare the same recipes in different collections, you know. So I think the possibilities are really really rich with having individual recipes.

SK 16:00

I'll just jump in to say one of the things we were really like that came up in our discussions when we were thinking about is a recipe and individual pub or are all the recipes on a page a pub. We could organize it, it's just that sense of like, I feel like by both allowing those individual transcribed recipes to sort of exist on our like site as an individual pub, but then also to still be able to see them under the collection page, sort of, you know, organized within, like by that single recipe book really captures something about how recipes were a form of like circulation in the early modern period here. Like that they really were sort of like a form of collective or social knowledge creation and sharing and I think it like people shared them or you know, even some of our recipes that are published on the site like there are lots of references to specific people so like Cousin Bennett's pea soup. We've almost liberated the recipe where you can both see how it connects to an individual collection, but then also how these things circulated beyond an individual single recipe book because they were collected by individuals and by families. So I really like that aspect of what what our site is able to do. But just as as Kyle had said it was so much labor. So I don't know what this will look like in the future because it was it was a lot of work. So it'd be really nice if we could find a way to kind of better integrate both the transcription platform we're using with the the pub itself or with Pub Pub.

Sarah Gulliford 17:48

I'm curious what transcription platform you use.

KD 17:52

So it's called “From the Page” and is wonderful.

We just recently started using an institutional license. But basically, it's a crowdsource transcription platform where anyone can access materials that have been uploaded by various cultural heritage institutions. And then it's basically a Wikipedia editing interface where you can transcribe what you see on the page. There's, of course, concerns around accuracy. But our projects, Stephanie, correct me if I'm wrong, are basically set to be private, to only those students.

SK 18:36

I think we've published it now. So we did, I mean, I think the thing about From the Page that's really useful is that, we kept the project private while students were working on it. This is a class, so they're being evaluated so there wasn't the risk that somebody was going to log in, and then start changing their transcriptions that they had created for a specific page in the recipe book. But I think we set them to published so, that way, we could link back from our PubPub site to From the Page.

So if you look at the individual recipe pages, we do have links back and you can actually like then link back to From the Page and find the transcribed recipe. And if you have a From the Page account, you can add comments or make changes there to correct it and I'm fairly sure that we published it. And the goal here too, is to actually make, you know, I would be remiss if I didn't say like so one of the reasons I mean, Kyle had come to From the Page as being a really useful platform for us to use. But it's also the platform that's been used by some really important projects for transcribing early modern recipes. So the Early Modern recipes online collective has been using From the Page and also the Folger library that's made a really like solid effort to make all of their recipe books fully available. And transcription, they were really like sort of, like integral, I think, even to the development or from the page, but they've been using from the page for a while for their project. And so it worked really well for us. And I really hope the welcome has been using it more in their own transcriptions. And they've been teaming up with EMROC, the Early Modern Recipes Online Collective, and these transcribe Ifans once or twice a year. And so my like ultimate, like sort of, like goal aim here is both like the recipes exists on our pub, like site, PubPub site. So they can be accessed and read by the public search to us whenever, but also all of that data that transcription data can be given back over, you know, in like, in correct TEI encoding to the Wellcome Library. So when they eventually want to be able to make this like transcription data accessible on their website, they'll have that that work from our class so that they can continue to build on using From the Page themselves, if that makes sense.

Sarah Gulliford 21:12

Yeah. It sounds like the From the Page platform is very in the canon of this type of work.

SK 21:21

I think so. Yeah. And there are there are so many possibilities for like, allowing further forms of integration that Kyle is like suggested in the future with either like PubPub, or any other kind of website. I think it has lots and lots of possibilities, because you can export the data in so many different formats.

Sarah Gulliford 21:42

That's something we're really exploring with PubPub is more open metadata, and not just like having pubs be text based entities too.

So yeah, that's something that we're looking into. And using the connections that you've already mentioned as ways to link those up.

KD 22:01

I know, their conversations on your team Sarah, around some kind of API to create pubs.

Sarah Gulliford 22:14

Right. Yep.

KD 22:16

Something that would be very much a game changer for this project.

SK 22:36

[From the Wellcome collection] they worked on Ms. 7746. I will not forget that because that call number.

Sarah Gulliford 22:43

Do you know what the number means? That's just truly the manuscript number 7746?

SK 22:53

Yeah, 7746. I can also tell you why we ended up working on this one.

So I wanted to, you know, talk to the person who's in charge, I think, Katie is her first name, and Meyers is her last name, but about making their online collections available at the Wellcome. We were trying to find one that they don't have plans to transcribe anytime soon or haven't transcribed. And so we had some we were thinking that [7746] in particular, is really great, because it has such a diversity of recipes. Some are really organized in ways where it's like, all of the like baking is at the front, and then here's medicine in the middle. And then this one is just such a hodgepodge of things. And they're kind of all mixed together.

So I wanted to give students lots of possibilities of like, “Oh, I'm super motivated or interested in this one particular cosmetics recipe. So that's what I'm going to focus on.” And this one also had, I have to say, one of the grossest recipes I've encountered, which, I feel like other early modernists knew about this, but I didn't. There are two recipes to make puppy dog water, which is a cosmetic recipe like made from actual puppy dogs. And so when I say it's an eclectic, it is very eclectic.

Sarah Gulliford 24:12

Yeah, the early modern era was a very different one. I guess maybe, I have this historical question: you've mentioned that there's like these two different, like, ranges of how recipe books were organized…

Is there any rhyme or reason for the types of recipe book organization? Or is that an active research question?

SK 24:39

Yeah, I'm not sure. Some of the folks who worked on—if anybody's interested in reading Elaine Leong’s work on recipe books is just like wonderful, much focused on like medicinal recipes, but also on cookery, right? Because of early modern ideas about how health was established, like how food is not just something you eat but also something essential to your health and beginning from there so there's lots of overlap there.

But I don't and I wouldn't I don't know that I would say there's just like these two ways of organizing it, but but you do see some differences, especially with like, these books that were clearly preserved within a single family across many generations. So you’ll see, like multiple contributors, and then you sometimes see others that are really well organized, because somebody was starting a household and copying, you know, recipes from other family books and other places and kind of organizing them as they go, or some are really elaborate. So there's lots of variation.

I like the one, the one that we used, like I said, it has evidence of multiple hands, but it really does. I can't remember if this one has many of these cases, but there are instances where you're like, you know, these recipes were actually being used. There is a recipe for. . . it's slipping my mind what it was… is it elder wine? It was a drink of some kind where the person copied down the recipe in this book, and then added to it afterward, like, you know, like two cups of water can't possibly be right here. I think it's this much, you know, like, because it did not turned out as expected. But other recipe books show lots of kind of marks of use. So you'll see people you know, write that a recipe was successful or like, this is the best medicine for this thing, they'll write in the margins, or even just put a mark or cross something out if it's if it's not a successful recipe, or they don't use it anymore. So I like that you can kind of see that, that history of use these are these are things that were really essential to the life of the family.

KD 26:36

I'm imagining like 17th or 18th century version of all recipes, like their reviews and comments, like is one star because I've replaced the key ingredients.

SK 26:49

Disaster Yeah.

Sarah Gulliford 26:54

What have been the student's perspective of this of these projects?

SK 27:00

So Kyle, I'll let you say a bit more about other students in the other projects you've worked on, I'll just briefly say, I think so the two comments I've gotten, or the couple of comments I've gotten so far, like, one was that there was a lot of difficulty early on with, like the recipes themselves trying to read the handwriting. And then, you know, we had a couple of in class labs, you know, we had we met at ZSR Special Collections, we looked at an 18th century recipe book fragment that we were able to purchase for our own archive. We then practiced in groups, we had, you know, students bring in their transcriptions and kind of peer reviewed them. And I think it was that process of them seeing like, I would kind of go around and they were like, “I don't know what this word is.” And I was like, I don't know what it is either. Let's try to figure it out. And it was that process of like, oh, like, you, there's no single like, expert in this, like, we're really just kind of trying to figure out what's written here. And it's not perfect. And things are misspelled, because there's no standardized spelling and punctuation. And, and you would have this kind of moment when things would just sort of snap into place for them when they like, “oh, I can read this person's handwriting” and, and I had a number of students comment on that. And just like, how interesting it was for them to use this thing that they still use now recipes, and it could reveal these much bigger history. So they were like, you know, writing about, you know, how ingredients might suggest imperial trade and colonization, and I had a student who was writing about like indigenous medicines that found their way into like recipe books back in Europe and the later 18th century. And so, I had lots of feedback, just like, “Oh, I didn't realize like, I could look at this kind of source and reveal this much bigger history.” Like I thought I was just looking at a recipe but like, wow, it does this. So that was good. I had lots of good feedback to about from the page, especially students seemed to really find it easy to use for peer review, which I liked. They did get a they were anxious about it. Like I don't I had a couple of students kind of and I think Kyle, you could probably tell on that last day, when you're sort of helping us workshop getting all of their research essays on the site. There was a kind of anxiety of like, Wait, can you check and make sure this is like everything's there? And then I hit publish and like, Okay, can you just check again and make sure this looks okay. We didn't we didn't run into any issues, but but there was there was definitely a just a little bit of anxiety. But I think overall, they they found it easy, easy to do. And I mean, I would definitely use this this platform again, Kyle, what did I don't know if you have impressions from my students when you were in our class or from your other classes you've worked with?

KD 29:44

I mean, the students just a few times during the semester and it's always in kind of this workshop lab context. And so you know, their responses usually. It starts with a little eggs it because they're about to learn a new thing. And then by the time they get their hands dirty with it, they become at least comfortable with it and not as overwhelmed as I think they thought they might have been, at least compared to my experience with other platforms. You know, I don't think anybody's like, jumping for joy, like this is the most amazing thing, because you know, they've got 900 tther projects they're working on. But I think they do appreciate having their work the public and knowing that their work is going to be reused. Yeah, there's a potential for their work to be reused not only from, you know, transcription like this is going to benefit other people, like we're going to take those transcriptions and maybe the welcome library can do something with them. You know, they can modify them, they can improve them. But knowing that there's a whole community of transcribers out there that can also improve their transcriptions. And then, you know, on pub, there's going to be students that are going to see the recipes they transcribed, they are going to see their recreations and their research essays. And they can use some of the features of Pub Pub, you know, commenting, annotating, making connections, to really build that community and make it even more rich and robust. So just that potential for future use, I think, is really, really motivating for students.

SK 31:21

Can I also just jump in there too. One of the things I didn't say you just reminded me was just like, I think they had fun too, like I like, especially with the reflection part of our so we had the second assignment where, you know, they could write, they could if they didn't want to, you know, kind of remake an early modern recipe, they could, you know, write a book review, like I had these other options, but I think most of the students recreated a recipe and they kind of wrote like, created a video about it or a blog post or something. And they had to make these historical connections. It wasn't just like, all fun. Like, here's what pancakes were like in the 18th century, but they were they were trying to draw some specific sort of historical connections back to some of the big topics, ideas and questions we had raised in class. But they like really, I mean, there's all sorts of inaccuracies and anachronisms in their videos, but it was clear that they had a lot of fun putting these together, like, especially you know, there's, there's a gingerbread video where they like, referenced in American dolls girl cookbook from the 18th century.

And that was sort of hysterical to me. That they were like, well, we can't figure this out. So let's go to this like, you know, American doll 18th century recipe and see if that will help us but but yeah, it's clear, it's clear, they, they were learning something, but also having fun. And I'll just like, so I those videos are great. They're up on the site. I think I loved how Pub Pub, easily host the video too, which is like something that did not work well with our Google site, and was so much easier here. So that was great. But also, um, what was I going to say about these videos? I had one more point to make. And I think I've completely lost it. This project began in like the worst part of COVID. Like, we started doing this in 2020. And so and one of the goals was like, How can we build community across this class? And I think even though we've returned to in person learning, and everything I still see like this kind of project is something that really built community in the class. And I can just tell from the the kinds of like, yeah, students were really excited about the things that they did, and like what now appears on our site, and they were excited to show their parents, you know, I just met a bunch of parents our graduation weekend. So I think that worked really well for us.

It was amazing Gingerbread, I'll just say too it was. So it was it has like it was really gingery and had other spices in it, too. It was like it was it was so the students were like, Oh, this we don't like this as much as like gingerbread now. And I was just like, I'll take it, it's so good. It was it was really amazing. They brought it to class to share.

KD 34:10

I had the same sense. I do think that they had a lot of fun with this. Whenever I think of these kinds of projects, I've tried to remind myself what projects I would have just absolutely lost my mind doing. In college, I really got tired of writing papers. But on a project like this, I probably would have voluntarily transcribed, you know, 20 times what I signed to do, because I'm a huge nerd. And I knew that, you know, there's a whole community of people that are doing this, and I've felt like I would have felt like a part of something. Likewise, with PubPub, you know, just knowing that there's these affordances for commenting and making connections. I'm the kind of person that you know, tries to see what a thing can do and I'll learn it and try to try to bring those affordances into my own work, even if it's kind of clunky at the time I do it. But so those are the kinds of projects that I really like to help faculty design, because I know that there are a lot more inspiring students.

Sarah Gulliford 35:12

Yeah, I remember when I was in college, I studied biochemistry. And I feel like every lab that we did, you knew that the students did the same thing last year. And it's not like you're not advancing research, you're just like, figuring out how much copper is in a penny. And you're like, is this really advancing scholarship? No, it's not. So yeah, that just sounds like really powerful that the students get to contribute to scholarship and do research. And then share it beyond their one professor who grades at the end of the semester.

That sounds really powerful. And important for the students to actually know what research is beyond like a classroom setting.

KD 35:59

And there's another part of it too, this goes back to the books that I have helped publish with Stephens colleague, students were getting really excited about, like organizing the book themselves, right, not just writing their individual chapters or essays. But how do these essays fit together? How do we weave some kind of narrative? Or how do we eat some kind of structure out of these disparate parts. And that process of making something that's greater than the sum of its parts was really important for them really motivating for some students, you know, they drew their own cover art, they wrote their own introduction and acknowledgement section. You know, some of them were a lot more invested than others, as is always going to be the case. But you can tell for some of them, it was a labor of love. And it wasn't just for the grade anymore. It was for something bigger than that. Not to be too flowery language. Right. But I think it's very real. Yeah. I can see with the recipes project, as we take some of the next steps, thinking about indexing and describing and creating collections to group these things together. That's not what we've done yet. But it's worth that is yet to be done. I think there's a ton of potential there. So maybe that's not Stephanie's class, maybe that's another class. So looking at these things, that's another possibility entirely.

Sarah Gulliford 37:28

Right, I guess that makes me wonder, maybe zooming out a little bit

What the long term support you have for either this project or other projects, and the role of individual scholars (I don't want to say verses) and institutions for supporting this work and ensuring that either students are a part of it and that it continues existing?

SK 38:02

Can I just say this was this was my, like, biggest fear when we were switching everything to PubPub I think I asked you, Kyle, last year, I was like, Kyle, you're not leaving anytime soon? Because this does take some level of institutional and staff support to continue. Yeah, that was that was a concern of mine. It's something has been really helpful with but just that that longevity of what this looks like in the future.

[Announcement that the library’s closing soon startles Kyle]

KD 38:38

That scared me. Terrifying. Yeah, summer hours announcement, I guess. I can't remember what we're talking about. But yeah, our sport model is a challenge, right, with any kind of digital scholarship stuff. I think my model is much more, get the faculty member to a place where they're comfortable enough with the platform, they can self support to an extent after the first time we do it. I certainly could not do this project with four or five faculty members, like something on the scale of this project. We added more than one faculty member in a semester, you know, I teach my own class, and I support another a number of other smaller projects that did not have nearly the amount of moving parts. But you know, this one, I felt had enough to it that required that extra amount of attention, and kind of dedicated long term support. We don't have a date attached to that or anything, but for as long as Stephanie wants to keep doing this, I'm going to keep supporting it. And but it's been really great, though, that Stephanie has been so proactive and learning the platform and has become quite comfortable using it. I think so And you know, that's credits pop up as well, it's, once you learn it once the organization scheme clicks, reasonably nice. Yeah. So that's been a huge plus. And I was working with another faculty member of history on just kind of a smaller scale project with his students, where they were just writing three essays, mostly blog posts, but also some book reviews. And really, all it took for that project was for me to set up the site shall create three different collections, and show students how to get their work in there, do the submissions process. And, you know, once that was created, it's kind of self supporting at that point. So the faculty members now comfortable enough with it to even do some review work in Pub Pub, get students comments there, and then publish the essays themselves. So. So I don't see that being a huge support burden going forward.

SK 40:57

But I'll just say like the we have, Kyle was, I mean, thank you, because Kyle was essential to kind of turn this into what it is now. I received some early support. I know, this wasn't what you asked, but I have to say it. So I received some early support from the Humanities Institute at Wake Forest to kind of explore how can we turn this unwieldy Google site that got the all of this traffic and publicity into something that was much more stable, and we could sort of have in the long term and use with future classes, and not just my class, but other people who are teaching, you know, on similar sort of topics to here.

But also Kyle was really helpful with then helping us secure funds from the ZSR Library, through their Mellon Grant, to continue with this work with Knowledge Futures, and sort of figure out the workflow and, and all of those questions of like getting the old data like scraped and brought over and what would the new data look like? And then, and the history department also provided some other funds for this too. So just to thank all of them, but especially Kyle, for kind of figuring out yeah, what this process would be like, and sort of setting it up to the extent that I think at least for now, it is pretty self sustaining at the moment. Like I think it's there's, there's things that can and shouldn't be done. But it's it's not been sort of difficult to figure out. It's been it's been an easy platform to learn how to navigate.

KD 42:22

This was referring to the Google Sites version. So before I even knew about this project, this was written up. So I knew that this had some exposure and some interest, and there's a whole community of people that are interested in fairly modern recipes. I was like, Alright, this is definitely a project that I want.

Sarah Gulliford 42:50

Yeah, I think as a final question, I want to ask you

What’s your favorite recipe from this collection?

It’s probably not the puppy dog one.

SK 42:59

Because we've only tried a handful of them — which you can sort of see on the reflections part of the site — I will say two. So one is the gingerbread recipe that students made. They were they were really good, really spicy gingerbread. The other thing that I that I liked one of my students did, it wasn't a recipe in this collection: she made an 18th century lip balm from another Wellcome Library manuscript recipe book. It’s from 1818 and it includes an ingredient that kind of turns the the felt a kind of deep red color almost. And she was able to buy — I forget what it was, but she was able to buy this ingredient, oh! — Alkenet root, she was able to buy it on Amazon. And one of the best things was still the color of this lip style basically looks like this really popular Clinique color that's been popular since I bought my first Clinique lipstick when I was a freshman or sophomore in high school called Black honey. And that was just such an interesting connection to see that like the 18th century like lip thought looks so much like this popular color today even, though it smelled a bit worse. As she said, it sort of smelled like sheep, but the color was really pretty. So those are the two recipes that I got the most out of I just thought was so interesting this semester. I don't know if there's one that appealed to you.

KD 45:07

You know, there's not one that really stands out to me as as a favorite. Definitely I have, you know, favorite recreations but I don't want to, you know, call those out. I found it really fascinating the number of things for which there were recipes, right. I'm just going through some of these that were, I'm realizing now that there's quite a few that are yet unpublished. So maybe I'll have to keep publishing them on the side. But like there's one that's like a salve for the sting of a wasp being swallowed down your throat and just lay there. Like, and for that recipe to exist, someone had to have swallowed a wasp down their throat to think okay, I need some kind of recipe to treat that. I don't know this. And some of the really wild ingredients. I don't know. Baking a Cavs head yeah, everything which we didn't we don't use some of the things that they use to use anymore. What is Stephanie what is syllabub? We just published the recipe for it.

SK 45:20

It's like it's a almost like a thick kind of drink almost like an ice cream. It would be served cold I think and you would have it like at the end of an evening. It’s got lemons, it's a sweet dish made with curdling milk, but it's almost like it's almost like an ice cream or like a like a pudding — an American pudding not a British pudding — that you would like serve. You know, like at the end of the evening. Or if you had like a some kind of a like a country dance at your house. Like that might be one of the things that was being served for dancers because it was supposed to be cooling I think.

Sarah Gulliford 47:04

Yeah, oh my gosh, I'm having a square dance at my wedding next month. I think I'm gonna serve some syllabub up now. Yeah. All that is wonderful. I definitely appreciate you for taking the time to talk to me.

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