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Food History : Find Books

A guide about researching food history. Adapted from HIST 200C "Thinking Historically About Food"

Library Catalogs

Searching the Library Catalog for Books about Food History

You can search the Library Catalog by author, title, keyword (words that appear anywhere in the information about the book), or subject. "Subject" refers to a controlled vocabulary (agreed-on set of terms), in this case the Library of Congress subject headings. Some useful subject terms:

  • food history
  • cooking history
  • food habits
  • food social aspects

Library of Congress Call Numbers 

TX341-TX641 Nutrition. Foods and Food Supply
          TX353 Food History
          TX360-TX361 Diet, food supply of countries and groups
          TX369-TX370 Natural foods, junk foods
          TX371-TX407 Meats, dairy, vegetables, vegetarianism, cereals, spices, condiments
          TX501-TXTX549 Food analysis, composition, methods of analysis
          TX551-TX560 Food values, dietary studies, specific foods, constituents
          TX563-TX597 Food adulteration, residues, impurities
          TX599-TX612 Home food preservation and storage
          TX631-TX641 Gastronomy

Dewey Decimal Call Numbers 

641 Food and Drink
          641.1 Applied Nutrition 
          641.2 Beverages (Drink)
          641.3 Food
          641.4 Food Preservation and Storage
          641.5 Cooking, Recipes 
          641.6 Cooking Specific Materials 
          641.7 Specific Cooking Processes and Techniques
          641.8 Cooking Specific Kinds of Composite Dishes 
642 Meals and Table Service 

Note! The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Library uses both Library of Congress and Dewey Decimal in its collections 


Photo by Keith Weller, USDA Agricultural Research Service.


Digitized Book Collections

Browse Early American Imprints and Afro-American Imprints by subject "economics and trade" and/or "agriculture" for best results. Within agriculture you can browse subsection "food" or "sugar" or "coffee".