Front Matter Why This Story was Written The Leaking Speedwell Searching for a Home After the Storm Wash Day Finding the Corn Attacked by the Savages Building Houses Miles Standish The Sick People The New Home Master White and the Wolf Inside of the House A Chimney Without Bricks Building the Fire Master Bradford's Chimney Scarcity of Food A Timely Gift The First Savage Visitor Squanto's Story Living in the Wilderness The Friendly Indians Grinding the Corn A Visit From Massasoit Massasoit's Promise Massasoit's Visit Returned The Big House Burned The Mayflower Leaves Port Setting the Table What and How we Eat Table Rules A Pilgrim Goes Abroad Making a Dugout Governor Carver's Death Bradford Chosen Governor Farming in Plymouth Cooking Indian Corn The Wedding Making Maple Syrup Decorating the House Trapping Wolves and Pigeons Elder Brewster The Visit to Massasoit Keeping the Sabbath Holy Making Clapboards Cooking Pumpkins A New Oven Making Spoons and Dishes The Fort and Meeting-House The Harvest Festival How to Play Stoolball On Christmas Day When the Fortune Arrived Possibility of Another Famine On Short Allowance A Threatening Message Pine Knots and Candles Tallow From Bushes Wicks for the Candle Dipping the Candles When James Runs Away Evil-Minded Indians Long Hours of Preaching John Alden's Tubs English Visitors Visiting the Neighbors Why More Fish are not Taken How Wampum is Made Ministering to Massasoit The Plot Thwarted The Captain's Indian Ballots of Corn Arrival of the Ann Little James Comes to Port The New Meeting-House The Church Service The Tithingmen Master Winslow Brings Cows A Real Oven Butter and Cheese Settlement at Wessagussett The Village at Merrymount The First School Too Much Smoke Schools Comforts How Children Were Punished New Villages Making Ready for a Journey Clothing for Salem Food for the Journey Before Sailing for Salem Beginning the Journey The Arrival at Salem Sight-Seeking in Salem Back to Plymouth

Mary of Plymouth - James Otis

A New Oven

Perhaps I have not told you how we happen to have an oven, when there is only the big fireplace in which to cook our food. Mistress White and Mistress Tilley each brought from Leyden, in Holland, what some people call "roasting kitchens," and you can think of nothing more convenient. The oven or kitchen is made of thin iron like unto a box, the front of which is open, and the back rounded as is a log. It is near to a yard long, and stands so high as to take all the heat from the fire which would otherwise be thrown out into the room.

In this oven we put our bread, pumpkins, or meat set it in front of, and close against, a roaring fire. The back, or rounded part is then heaped high with hot ashes or live embers, and that which is inside must of a necessity be cooked. At the very top of the oven is a small door, which can be opened for the cook to look inside, and one may see just how the food is getting on, without disturbing the embers that have been heaped against the outer portion.

[Illustration] from Mary of Plymouth by James Otis

We often borrow of Mistress Tilley her oven, and father has promised to send by the first ship that comes to this harbor, for one that shall be our very own. When it arrives, I am certain mother will be very glad, for there is no kitchen article which can save so much labor for the housewife.