The Beauty of a 1959 Freezer Manual

coverThis 1959 booklet was put out by Sears Roebuck in support of its Coldspot chest and upright freezers. Within its pages, a whimsical penguin and an industrious housewife team up to show Coldspot owners how to freeze fruits, pastries, individual meals and other items for long-term use; the booklet also includes an expansive chart of how long stuff holds up under cold storage (brains less than
a month; egg whites for 9-to-12… now you know).

The useful and straightforward nature of the book’s information is striking¬† — it represents what is now a charmingly earnest effort made by a major corporation to actually impart of a pile of useful knowledge to its customers. Different cuts of meat, recipes for beef stroganoff and various pies, detailed instructions on how to freeze nearly any specific kind of fruit or vegetable — the breadth and
depth of information is jaw-dropping when you consider the book’s humble origins as a freezer manual.

What’s striking is the company’s commitment to providing actual content, including extensively researched and detailed charts, original art and competent long-form writing. This is the kind of manual that you’d put in the top of your kitchen drawer for frequent reference; no mere manual, it’s almost a miniature cookbook.

And the art’s not bad, either.