College Library's Culinary Collection Selected for Guide

Published 02.20.2006


The Pennsylvania College of Technology Library's collection of cookery and gastronomy books has been added to "A Selective Guide to Culinary Library Collections in Canada and the United States." The online guide is authored by culinary historian Madge Griswold and instituted by the International Association of Culinary Professionals Foundation, now known as The Culinary Trust, "to support the emerging area of Food Studies as an academic field and to assist members of the culinary field in general."

The guide features short descriptions of each library and its culinary collection, as well as contact information. The University of Toronto, Harvard University, Johnson & Wales University, The New York Public Library and The Smithsonian Institution are only a few of the 75 public, academic, historical and special libraries included in the guide. "The decision to include a collection was based not only on size, but also on the significance of a library's holdings," according to Griswold. "In general, collections of less than 1,000 volumes were not included unless they have some specialized value."

"The quality and scope of the collection is the product of over 15 years of enthusiastic collaboration between Judy F. McConnell and Penn College faculty in the School of Hospitality," said Lisette N. Ormsbee, director of the college library. "The culinary collection supports the information and research needs of students, faculty, staff and other patrons. Through our worldwide resource-sharing services, these wonderfully diverse titles will reach library users regionally, nationally and internationally."

McConnell, the hospitality-and-culinary-arts subject librarian, wrote the following that will appear in the updated guide:

"The culinary collection of the Penn College Library is created to support the students, faculty and staff of the School of Hospitality. This wonderful collection totals approximately 3,689 titles related to baking, pastry, cookery, gastronomy, food in general, hotel, hospitality and restaurant management, beverages, wine, wine-making and viticulture. The collection consists of 3,384 books, some of which are in Special Collections, and 305 videos and DVDs." "More specifically, the library's culinary collection includes numerous award-winning titles that have received the IACP Cookbook Award, the Julia Child Cookbook Award and the James Beard Foundation Award," she said. "The library also purchases cookbooks written by chefs who participate in our 'Visiting Chef Series,' as well as chefs from around the world. Many of our cookbooks have been signed by the author and are located in our Special Collections." "The Roger and Peggy Madigan Library, opening Fall 2006, will provide us with an opportunity to add more 'special' cookbooks, as well as rare editions," McConnell added, "enhancing our collection and providing a wealth of culinary history and research to be treasured for years to come."

For more about the Penn College Library, call (570) 320-2409; send e-mail or visit online. Information about the Madigan Library can be foundhere.