- Social Sciences; Mississippi Community Cookbook Project; special collections; archives; cookbooks; digital humanities; outreach; Archival Science; Library and Information Science; Social and Behavioral Sciences
book chapter description
Before we could forge a partnership with the community, we needed to create partnerships at the university. In 2013, the Curator of Rare Books and Mississippiana and a food historian came together to build the Mississippi Community Cookbook Project (MCCP). Since, the project has developed the library’s cookbook collection into the largest in Mississippi. It succeeded because both project coordinators respected each other’s expertise, and worked within existing institutional frameworks. The library collects, digitizes, and catalogs the cookbooks. The MCCP’s website provides contextual information, additional indices, and an accessible public gateway to the cookbooks (as well as a social media presence). While at times the lack of support for digital humanities at Southern Mississippi has slowed progress, this partnership has led to broad public engagement, and the development of a valuable archival resource.