As American as applie pie, baseball and... a chocolate chip cookie? Saco Foods Inc states that the chocolate chip cookie is the favorite American cookie with 7 billion consumed every year.1 When the former Midwest Airlines operated out of Milwaukee's General Mitchell International Airport, a fresh chocolate chip cookie served near the end of flights was a company trademark.

The story of the chocolate cookie began at Massachusett's Toll House Inn. The official version of the near-legendary tale is that Mrs Wakefield had run out of Baker's Chocolate2  and added fragments of Nestle chocolate squares to the batter expecting the chocolate to melt. Instead it resulted in a butter/vanilla dough with solid chocolate pieces that she called Toll House Crunch Cookie.  
Toll House Chocolate Crunch Cookies
Cream 1 cup butter
Add ¾ cup brown sugar, ¾ cup white sugar, 2 eggs, beaten
Dissolve 1 teaspoon baking soda in 1 teaspoon hot water
Add alternately with 2 ¼ cups flour sifted with 1 teaspoon salt
Add 1 cup chopped nuts, 2 bars Nestle’s Semi-Sweet Chocolate broken into pieces
Add 1 teaspoon vanilla

Drop by half teaspoonfuls onto greased cooky sheet. Bake in moderate oven, 375 degrees, for 10 to 12 minutes. Makes 100 cookies

At Toll House, we chill overnight. When mixture is ready for baking, we roll a teaspoon of dough between palms of hands and place balls 2 inches apart on greased baking sheet. Then we press balls with finger tips to form flat rounds. This way cookies do not spread as much in the baking and they keep uniformly round. They should be brown through, and crispy, not white and hard as I have sometimes seen them.”
Picture1936 Recipe Book
Looking through the Liberty Edition of Milwaukee's own Settlement Cook Book (below), which predates the Toll House cookbook by decades, you can read several recipes that are quite similar to the chocolate chip cookie or the Chocolate Butter Drop Do Mrs. Wakefield was intending to make. One calls for grated chocolate to be added to the cookie, not the pieces Mrs. Wakefield added, and this change is more important then the type of chocolate used. Grated chocolate could be thoroughly incorporated into the mixture. Another calls for the chocolate squares to be first melted before added. 

Well Used Version of the 1915 Settlement Cook Book with WWI "Liberty Supplement" Section

At the end of the original Toll House Chocolate Crunch recipe is one of the secrets to an excellent cookie. Chill overnight was removed for editorial or busy modern bakers as it does not appear on any subsequent Nestle chocolate chip bags.

Chilling the dough overnight or even for a couple of days dries out and cools the batter. This makes for a thicker, chewy cookie instead of a flat, crisp one.

The story of the cookie has a happy result for all. Mrs. Wakefield received free Nestle's chocolate for the rest of her life and Nestle had the rights to the recipe for their own promotion.3 Ultimately the best cookie is whatever you prefer. 




By Joel Willems,
Curator, Chudnow Museum of Yesteryear

Era of Bootlegging


PicturePabst Brewery in 1935 at the end of national Prohibition
For 14 years prohibition lasted in this country during which time the production, distribution, or sale of alcohol was illegal. The 18th Amendment that brought about prohibition is the only federal amendment ever repealed. Cities like Milwaukee built profitable industries around alcohol production and employed thousands of workers. 

Attempting to make illegal what had always been legal mostly just drove the market underground. Bootleggers took advantage of this opportunity and supplied illegal bars nicknamed speakeasies because a patron had to "speak easy" with a password to gain admission.

The video below is of a notorious bootlegger in the North West who acted against the amendment he did not believe was right. There were many people supportive of his actions against prohibition.

Similar cases arose throughout the country. Major brewing cities such as Milwaukee, Cincinnati and St. Louis witnessed their industries devastated by prohibition acts. Yet alcohol continued to flow.  Milwaukee was notorious for its speakeasies.  Milwaukee Mayor Daniel Hoan once quipped, "The whole United States Army could not dry up Milwaukee". At one point New York figured to have around 100,000 speakeasies. The law did little to deter people from getting a drink. (Legends of America)

We want to celebrate the rich history of this time at our Bootlegger’s Bash on May 16th. There will be a traditional “speakeasy,” complete with hidden door and password! We will also be dressed for the time, and serve time period specific appetizers. Come check it out! Chudnow Events

By Dustin Hochmuth,
Museum Intern, UW-Whitewater Communications Major

The victorious Brewers of 1926 -Photo courtesy
A big first win for the Brewers on April 21, 1926 helped to begin a season of victories. A team of 22 players brought thousands of fans to Athletic Park (later known as Borchertfield field) to experience the excitement of that season.

Thus began Jack Lelivelt’s successful career with the Milwaukee Brewers, who set a new club record for victories in 1926 with 93. By June 15th, 1926, the American Association standings in the Milwaukee Sentinel placed the Brewers in first place ahead of Indianapolis, Kansas City, Toledo and St. Paul. 
Jack is in the picture above third from left in the middle row. Dressed in the suit to his right is Otto Borchert, the president of the team, who would tragically pass away the following year. 

Sylvester Simon (pictured fourth from left in the top row) only played one season with the Brewers but saw action in 107 games and hit a .308 average. Californian Clyde Beck (second from left in top row) also only played for the Brewers in 1926. Pitcher Ossie Orwoll (second from left in the bottom row) had the team best record with 12 wins to 4 losses. In June of 1926 he played in Athletic Park for the first time and aided in their ninth consecutive win. They defeated St. Paul 4 to 1 with Orwoll scoring one of those critical runs and bringing the two thousand fans to their feet on a rainy Wednesday afternoon. The whole city seemed to be in baseball fever as the streak continued.

An article by Chance Michaels of the Borchertfield Museum stated that in the 21st victory of the season they played the Toledo Mud Hens and won 9 to zero! That game was played on June 14th. 

On the 16th the Brewers again played Toledo but fell 9 to 6, their first loss since May 26. It concluded the amazing 21 game undefeated streak. Hefty Heaving from the Toledo Mud Hens had three home runs and hit one through the hands of outfielder Bunny Brief (to the right of Borchert in photo) with the bases loaded in the fifth inning. Hefty's fine offense and the fatigue of pitcher Dave Dansworth proved decisive in the defeat. Dansworth (not in the photo above) otherwise had pitched a great season leading up to the Toledo game. However, he was ill for some time before the game and his performance suffered. 

Athletic Field drew thousands of fans to the stands to watch the great victories of the 1926 Milwaukee Brewers team. The excitement of baseball, and the Milwaukee Brewers, are significant trademarks of the Milwaukee area. Congratulations 1926 Brewers! Welcome to a new baseball season, Milwaukee!

Brews Beaten After Winning 21 Straight Games [Electronic version]. (1926, June 17). The Milwaukee Journal, p. 10.

Hamann, R., & Koehler, B. (2004). American Association Milwaukee Brewers (pp. 52-59). Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing. Retrieved April 2, 2013, from

Michales, C. (2012, November 12). In Borchert Field . Retrieved April 2, 2013, from

Ossie Orwall Faces St. Paul in Second [Electronic version]. (1926, June 2). The Milwaukee Journal, p. 39.

By Dustin Hochmuth,
Museum Intern, UW-Whitewater Communications Major