Country Cooking with a Granville Flair: Florence's Chess Pie

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We are beginning a new theme for Granville this year as we commemorate the 1930s and all that era represented.

I attended a volunteer dinner recently, and as I walked into the museum, I was greeted by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the First Lady, Eleanor. It was so lovely to see them. I realize he has a lot to do since being elected in 1932, but he was very gracious.

I proceeded on my journey in the genealogy room and looked at all the books that hold photos and memories of families that were from Granville. A tear came to my eye because my family's book is among those on the shelf, and in that book are photos and memories of my family who are no longer with us. As I scanned the room, I saw some beautiful old quilts hanging on the wall. They were signature quilts. Signature quilt blocks often had names embroidered or written in ink, and they would be auctioned off for various events like missionary work or supporting a troop going off to war.

The 1930s also gave us movies such as "Frankenstein," "A Farewell to Arms," "King Kong" and "Tarzan the Ape Man." Oh, my! Who do I see standing in the Granville Museum? None other than Scarlett from "Gone With the Wind."

I made my way to the Homestead and looked at the table, decorated with beautiful Optic Block Depression glass, beds with handmade quilts and crotched doilies on the chairs. I really wanted to get to the kitchen area because I had heard about this wonderful new item they had. It is an egg incubator. People during the 1930s used the egg incubator because eggs were needed for food for their own families and also used to barter with neighbors and store owners for other commodities that were needed.

I am so excited about all the events Granville has planned for 2016. Check us out at You can visit Granville every month and find something different. Pay a visit to the Granville Museum, and you too can visit with President Roosevelt!

Florence's Chess Pie

1 c. brown sugar

½ c. white sugar

2 T. cornmeal

1 t. flour

2 T. milk

2 eggs, beaten

½ c. butter, melted

½ T. vinegar

½ t. vanilla

1 pie shell, unbaked

Sift brown sugar in a bowl with white sugar, flour and cornmeal; add eggs and milk and beat until sugar is almost dissolved. Stir in melted butter, vinegar and vanilla; pour into unbaked pie shell. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until done in middle.

This recipe was submitted in memory of Mrs. Harrison (Florence Massey) Woodard and can be found in the "Historical Recipes of Granville" cookbook.

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Kaye Loftis, recipes
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