Maine Historical Society



On-Demand Programs

Chowder Rules! - a book reading with Anna Crowley Redding and Vita Lane

Recorded on November 14, 2020

Who doesn't crave a nice, hot bowl of clam chowder on a chilly Maine day? Perhaps no one more than Maine lawmaker Cleveland Sleeper. Sleeper loved steamy, creamy, dreamy clam chowder, and thoughts of tomatoes in his chowder made him see red. So much so he proposed a bill to actually make it a crime to add tomatoes to clam chowder! New Yorkers were quite offended! A war of words raged, until finally a duel of chefs settled the matter once and for all.

Learn the little known but fun and fascinating story behind the great chowder cook-off of 1939 as told by author Anna Crowley Redding and illustrator Vita Lane in their new book Chowder Rules! The True Story of an EPIC Food Fight. Ms. Crowley Redding and Ms. Lane read the story aloud and discuss how they researched primary sources (including some from Maine Historical Society) to bring this history to life. Kids and adults alike are sure to enjoy this delicious tale told with gusto, humor, and, of course, good taste! (Chowder Rules! The True Story of an EPIC Food Fight by Anna Crowley Redding (author) and Vita Lane (illustrator), published by Islandport Press, 2020)