Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Bread Bond

Those of you who have been reading my blog for awhile will recall my bread pledge a few years back (2010, actually) when, as part of Earth Day celebrations, I pledged to make all of our family's bread products for 40 days. It was a transformative experience. I gave a talk about it at church and also posted most of my recipes (search my blog for "bread pledge" or "rise up.")  I then posted a wrap-up.  Two interesting things happened during the pledge:  it brought my church community together as they rallied to teach me how to bake and shared their recipes with me.  And I was given a highly coincidental, perhaps miraculous, compilation of bread recipes--BREAD of all things, not just a cookbook--which was, unbeknownst to the person who gave it to me, compiled by the person who lived in this house in the 1950s!!

Well, the bread story continues.  Because yesterday, as the attic cleaners were carting junk out of the attic, I spotted a dirty only plank, with this sign screwed on it:

It had to be bread!

I Googled it and found that this dirty, grimy sign, when cleaned (and that's not rust but dirt!) sells for almost $500 on eBay!  It's porcelain on steel, dating to the around the 1930s, or about a decade after our house was built.  Bond Bread, founded in 1911 by the General Baking Company, was made by a conglomeration of bakeries in, at its height, 26 states, and was famous for its baked goods, such as streusel-topped cinnamon swirl bread and "bridge cookies" (they even held a contest to find the best homemade recipe!).  It was very popular, supporting radio programs and eventually Hopalong Cassidy's show (did you know I used to live on Cassidy Place and had a cat named Hopalong!  The coincidences multiply!).    Something like Pepperidge Farms, I think.  Anyway, the bakeries were dominant until grocery stores added their own bakeries; I think the company shuttered in 1972.

I can only guess that it's screwed onto what was once a portion of fence that was later used as flooring in our attic, where the sign stayed protected for half a century or so until I saw the attic cleaners carting it away to the junk pile of 50+ bags of insulation and garbage.  It didn't take a split second for me to know that I wanted to keep that sign, which is now safe in the garage until we can figure out how to get it off the planks.

We won't be selling it, even at that price.  I think it's some kind of lucky bread talisman so it will be going into our kitchen as soon as possible.  Sis and Bud were intrigued, though they don't recall the Bread Pledge (they were only 4 1/2 years old), and they've asked me to take up the homemade bread pledge again.

See, it's magic is working already.


  1. What a great story!
    I "believe in" coincidences...hope you're up for baking again soon!

  2. I have been looking for something as good as those bridge cookies since I returned to the States after service in 1969. My mother would send them in care packages to us and they were the best tasting cookies out of a box that I had ever eaten. Wish there was a clone somewhere.