How Bear Wallow started
A University historian’s research repeatedly turned up recipes which had been transported over land and
sea, by caravan, clipper ship and covered wagon, over thousands of miles and thousands of years. She
discovered that sharing recipes was a long-treasured tradition, enjoyed by many cultures and many
Her interest in the tradition grew, along with her collection of historical recipes. When asked about
persimmon recipes by an aunt who had persimmon trees in her back yard, she saw an opportunity to
carry on the tradition which fascinated her. Bear Wallow Books started with the publication of Old-
Fashioned Persimmon Recipes, in 1978, and continues to share old-fashioned recipes with new
The little publishing company was named after a place near the author’s rural Indiana home, where past
generations had watched bears wallow on hot summer days. The woods, hills and stream still look the
same, but the only bears in the vicinity today are the ones in Bear Wallow Books.
How Bear Wallow Books Got Its Name
Back in the days when bears roamed North America (they are still found in some of the wildest areas),
they would wallow or roll and squirm in swampy or muddy areas to cool their skins during the heat of the
Native Americans and settlers designated many of these wallowing places on early maps, because
bears frequented them so often. Some of these bear wallows remain today on official state maps. Such a
designation appears on the current map of Brown County, Indiana.
Here in a densely forested, hilly area, a large historical marker notes that the last bear in these parts was
sighted in 1913; the swamp was drained shortly thereafter. Bear Wallow Hill Road is nearby. Greasy
Creek, at the bottom of the hill, was named for the oil from the bears’ skins that accumulated there.
In 1970, the author of the original Old-Fashioned Recipe series moved to Brown County, to a home in the
woods close to the great Bear Wallow. Entranced by the area’s history and beauty, she named her
fledgling publishing company Bear Wallow Books.
About our books
Bear Wallow Books
- Fun to read and fun to use
- Readily available ingredients
- Old recipes, old-fashioned art and
regions, and on life in early America
- Focus on special ingredients and
appeal to individual interests
- Inexpensive, easy to collect
Look for the colorful little books
- 32 pages, plus soft cover
- 8 1/2 x 5 1/2" saddlestitched
- Printed in the U. S. A. with soy ink
| Affiliations (in alphabetical order)
American Association for
State and Local History
Partners for Public
North American Farmers'
Direct Marketing Association
© 2006 Bear Wallow Books, Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.