Irma von Starkloff Rombauer (1877-1962) and her daughter, Marion Rombauer Becker (1903-1976), were the co-authors of Joy of Cooking. Born and raised in cultured German circles in St. Louis, Mo., Rombauer came to cookbook writing as a complete amateur after her husband's suicide in 1930. From her first effort, published in 1931 at her own expense, Joy evolved into a general cookbook notable for its ingenious new recipe format; it was published commercially in 1936 and met with national success in 1943. Marion Rombauer Becker, who had moved to Cincinnati after her marriage to architect John Becker, joined as co-author in 1951. Becker steered the cookbook as it developed into one of the most important American culinary reference works of the twentieth century. In this collection, drafts, correspondence with the publisher Bobbs-Merrill, royalty statements, fan mail, and publicity document the evolution of Joy of Cooking through eight editions (1931-1975).