Cannon, Poppy (2 Aug. 1905–1 April 1975), cookbook author, journalist, and advertising executive, was born Lillian Gruskin in Cape Town, South Africa, to Robert and Henrietta Gruskin, Jewish immigrants from Lithuania. (Henrietta’s maiden name is unknown.) The family moved to the United States in ...
E. D. Lloyd-Kimbrel
Fisher, M. F. K. (03 July 1908–22 June 1992), writer, was born Mary Frances Kennedy in Albion, Michigan, the daughter of Rex Brenton Kennedy, a newspaper editor, and Edith Oliver Holbrook, a real estate broker. When Fisher was three years old, the family moved to the Quaker community of Whittier, California, where her father took over the editorship of the local newspaper. The Kennedys were Episcopal and somewhat “outside the faith” in their new home. Rex Kennedy continued as editor of the ...
Kimberly Morse Jones
Pennell, Elizabeth Robins (21 Feb. 1855–7 Feb. 1936), author, art critic, and culinary writer, was born Elizabeth Robins in Philadelphia to Edward Robins, a member of the Philadelphia Exchange, and Margaret Miller, who died shortly after giving birth to her. In spite of the family’s devout Episcopalian background, Robins converted to Catholicism and enrolled his daughter in a convent at Conflans, France, and then at the Convent of the Sacred Heart in Torresdale, a suburb of Philadelphia, where she was a bright, capable student. At the Convent of the Sacred Heart, she met Agnes Repplier, who would also go on to become a writer, with whom she maintained a lifelong friendship....
Karen Manners Smith
Terhune, Mary Virginia Hawes (21 December 1830–03 June 1922), novelist and domestic expert, was born in Dennisville, Amelia County, Virginia. She was the second of seven surviving children of Samuel Pierce Hawes, a merchant originally from Massachusetts, and Judith Anna Smith Hawes, the daughter of well-to-do Virginia planters. Mary Virginia’s father gave his precocious daughter early access to classic literature and provided her with a broad education unusual for a southern girl of the period. She was schooled at home by tutors and governesses and spent two years attending a Presbyterian girls’ seminary in Richmond after the family moved to that city in 1845....
Maker: Carl Van Vechten
Toklas, Alice B. (30 April 1877–07 March 1967), writer, author of cookbooks, and Gertrude Stein's companion, writer, author of cookbooks, and Gertrude Stein’s companion, was born Alice Babette Toklas in San Francisco, California, the daughter of Ferdinand Toklas, a store owner, and Emma Levinsky. She lived a middle-class Jewish life of intellectual and artistic pursuits in the homes of her maternal grandparents in San Francisco and her family homes both there and in Seattle, Washington. Her father’s clothing business was prosperous much of the time. She attended private school and spent many years at piano study. At eight she was taken to France and England as well as to Poland to visit her father’s relatives. In 1893 she entered the music conservatory of the University of Washington....
Vanderbilt, Amy (22 July 1908–22 December 1974), journalist, was born in Staten Island, New York, the daughter of Joseph Mortimer Vanderbilt, an insurance broker, and Mary Estelle Brooks. At the age of sixteen, while still a student at Curtis High School, she became the society writer for the Staten Island ...