Guide to the Menu Collection,
1851-[ca. 1900]

Collection Number: 6452

Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections
Cornell University Library

Contact Information:
Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections
2B Carl A. Kroch Library
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
(607) 255-3530
Fax: (607) 255-9524
rareref@cornell.edu
http://rmc.library.cornell.edu
Compiled by:
J. Parker
Date completed:
September 2001
EAD encoding:
Martin Heggestad, May 2003
Date modified:
Jude Corina, June 2015

© 2008 Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library


DESCRIPTIVE SUMMARY

Title:
Menu collection, 1851-[ca.1990]
Collection Number:
6452
Creator:
Cornell University Library.
Quantity:
35.3 cubic ft.
Forms of Material:
Menus.
Repository:
Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library
Abstract:
A collection of over 10,000 menus, providing evidence of the manners, mores, and food habits of earlier times.
Language:
Collection material in English


ORGANIZATIONAL HISTORY

The core of the collection was assembled by Oscar Tschirky (1866-1943), known throughout the world as Oscar of the Waldorf. As maitre d'hotel of the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City, from 1893 to 1943, he began a lifelong hobby of collecting menus, some of which were for functions he himself arranged, but most of which were of historical, gastronomic, or artistic importance. Upon his death, his menu collection, papers, and personal memorabilia were donated to Cornell University. The Hotel School Library has continued to add to the collection.

COLLECTION DESCRIPTION

A collection of over 10,000 menus, providing evidence of the manners, mores, and food habits of earlier times.
Many menus include prints or half-tones of historic people and places. They may also include featured speakers, detail organizational leadership, and provide biographical sketches of the famous and infamous, including Theodore Roosevelt, Wilbur and Orville Wright, and Oscar Hammerstein. They may dramatize historical events, such as a "luncheon to the California Promotion Committee on the occasion of the resumption of the hotel business in the burned district after the earthquake and fire on 18 April 1906"; the opening of the first tunnels of the Hudson and Manhattan Railroad Company under the Hudson River; and a dinner in honor of Louis Kossuth, the Hungarian patriot. Prohibition era menus indicated the availability of spirits to their clientele by tucking a small insert into the spine cord of the menu.
Also menus collected by Charles N. Pinco.
Also, menus collected by Ruth Wood Green from hotels and nightclubs in the 1940s.

SAMPLE LOCATIONS


SUBJECTS

Names:
Cornell University Library.

Subjects:
Menus--United States--History--19th century.
Menus--United States--History--20th century.
Menus--England--History--19th century.
Menus--England--History--20th century.
Menus--France--History--19th century.
Menus--France--History--20th century.
Gastronomy.
Dinners and dining.
Restaurants.

Form and Genre Terms:
Menus.


INFORMATION FOR USERS

Cite As:
Menu Collection, #6452. Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library.

RELATED MATERIAL

Database at The Nestlé Library Restaurant Menus Database
See also the volume titled The Charles N. Pinco collection of international restaurant menus : gathered between 1909 and 1958 from the major portion of the civilized world, call # TX728.P56 + .

CONTAINER LIST

Description
Container
Oscar of the Waldorf: 000-896
Box 1
Oscar of the Waldorf: 897-901
Box 2
Oscar of the Waldorf: 902-904
Box 3
Oscar of the Waldorf: 905
Box 4
Oscar of the Waldorf: 906
Box 5
Oscar of the Waldorf: 907
Box 6
Oscar of the Waldorf: 908
Box 7
Oscar of the Waldorf: 909001-909125
Box 8
Oscar of the Waldorf: 909126-910089
Box 9
Oscar of the Waldorf: 910090-End
Box 10
Oscar of the Waldorf: 911
Box 11
Oscar of the Waldorf: 912
Box 12
Oscar of the Waldorf: 913
Box 13
Oscar of the Waldorf: 914, 915
Box 14
Oscar of the Waldorf: 916
Box 15
Oscar of the Waldorf: 917, 918
Box 16
Oscar of the Waldorf: 919
Box 17
Oscar of the Waldorf: 920
Box 18
Oscar of the Waldorf: 921
Box 19
Oscar of the Waldorf: 922-923
Box 20
Oscar of the Waldorf: 924-925
Box 21
Oscar of the Waldorf: 926
Box 22
Oscar of the Waldorf: 927-943
Box 23
Pinco #1
Box 24
Pinco #2
Box 25
Pinco
Box 26
Pinco
Box 27
Cornell
Box 28
General: 180001-
Box 29
General: 190001-
Box 30
Assorted menus
Box 31-42
Charles N. Pinco: West and Southwest 1-38
Box 43A
Charles N. Pinco: West and Southwest 39-69
Box 43B
Charles N. Pinco: East West Railroads, 1-38
Box 44A
Charles N. Pinco: East West Railroads, 39-83
Box 44B
Charles N. Pinco: New York Hotels and clubs, World's Fair, 1-37
Box 45A
Charles N. Pinco: New York Hotels and clubs, World's Fair, 38-81
Box 45B
Charles N. Pinco: Domestic and International, 1-40
Box 46A
Charles N. Pinco: Domestic and International, 41-82
Box 46B
Charles N. Pinco: Europe, 1-50
Box 47A
Charles N. Pinco: Europe, 51-101
Box 47B
Charles N. Pinco: United States and Canada, 1-44
Box 48A
Charles N. Pinco: United States and Canada,45-79
Box 48B
Charles N. Pinco: U.S., 1-43
Box 49A
Charles N. Pinco: U.S., 44-79
Box 49B
Charles N. Pinco: New York City, 1-36
Box 50A
Charles N. Pinco: New York City, 37-77
Box 50B
Charles N. Pinco: Steamships lines, American coast, Airways, 1-21
Box 51
Charles N. Pinco: Steamship lines, Transatlantic, 1-20
Box 52A
Charles N. Pinco: Steamship lines, Transatlantic, 21-39
Box 52B
Charles N. Pinco: Japan, 1-30
Box 53
Charles N. Pinco: New England, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, 1-14
Box 54
Charles N. Pinco: Hotel Ezra Cornell, Willard Straight Hall, Swedish American Line, Martha Van Rensselaer Hall, The Waldorf-Astoria Sert Ballroom, The New York Hilton Hotel, US Senate, Hotel Statler, Hotel Statler Buffalo
Box 55
Villa Erdmunde, Palace of Schoenbrunn, Grand Hall - Hotel Cecil, The Waldorf, Hotel Astor, Hotel Metropole, Beacon Hotel, Bourne Hall Hotel, Hotel St. Regis - Clarence Room, Hotel Burlington, Cavanagh's, The Royal York Hotel, Hotmel Mont Dore, Hotel McAlpin, Hotel Imperial, Cafe Noir, Princes Cruises, The China Club, The Mayflower Hotel, The Newporter, Haus der Industrie, Palace Hotel, The Culinary Institute of America, Pan American World Airways, Simpson's in-the-Strand, Queen Elizabeth 2 (Cunard Line), New York International Airport, Canadian Pacific Hotel
Box 56
International and US menus
Box 57
Canada menus
Box 58
Unprocessed menus
Box 59
Unprocessed menus
Box 60