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Holiday Baking Blast from the Past

Enjoy this selection of vintage baking recipes from the 1920 Bayside Woman’s Club Cookbook
1920s housewife at stove cooking

One century ago in 1920, the members of the Bayside Woman’s Club compiled their favorite recipes into a series of cookbooks. Written by the affluent women of Bayside — some of the contributors were descendants of the Bell family after which Bell Boulevard was named — these books were originally intended for use by community groups and housewives. One hundred years later, this cookbook gives us a glimpse into the lives of women from this social class at the turn of the 20th century in Bayside. 

This holiday season, Bayside Historical Society is offering a special treat: Every Friday in December, we’ll unveil vintage baking recipes from the Bayside Woman’s Club Cookbook! Our staff has combed through the recipes and selected sweets that translated best to our modern kitchens — no need to dust off the ole’ gas cabinet range! 

The BHS staff tried their hand at some of these vintage baking recipes  — check out some of the results of their endeavors in our Facebook photo album!

Recipe List

Vintage Baking Recipes

December 4

Plum Pudding

Liberty Coffee Cake

December 11

Sponge Cake

White Fruit Cake

December 18

Apple Sauce Cake

Ginger Cake

December 25
Quick Cake
Graham Layer Cake

Oven Temps

Oven Temperature Key for Vintage Recipes


Vintage recipes tend to use oven temperature instructions that are unfamiliar today. Use this helpful conversion chart to help you prepare the recipes from this 1920 Woman's Club Cookbook.

Step inside

the Castle

Oven Temperature Key for Vintage Recipes

Source: The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

Bayside Woman's Club

More About the Bayside Woman’s Club


The Bayside Woman’s Club was founded in 1916 by a group of eight women interested in contributing to the community through philanthropic endeavors. They began as a sewing circle and made items for donation to Flushing Hospital. During the course of these sewing circles they elected their first president, Mrs. Bramwell Davis and developed a list of objectives. These included the promotion of community spirit and civic improvements, the development of mental and social growth, and the allowance for “the provision of aid for any just cause.” In 1917, the organization helped mobilize the Red Cross chapter in Bayside and provided women with home nursing courses during the influenza outbreak of 1918.  The club originally met at the Ahles Building on the corner of 41st Street and Bell Boulevard.


Committees were officially established in 1924, and the club later included a garden, literary, music and drama department. In later years welfare and civics departments were also established. In 1961, the group established a Junior Woman’s Club. The Bayside Woman’s Club gave its time and money to a variety of organizations, including monthly donations to the Bayside Ambulance Corps. The club was dissolved in 2002. 

Bayside Historical Society has items from the Woman’s Club of Bayside in its archives, among them an original copy of the cookbook.

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