Alexis Soyer Famine Kitchen

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Alexis Soyer Famine Kitchen

Postby colmfolan » Mon Oct 29, 2007 10:04 am

Hello Everyone-
What on earth is a Chef doing on an architectural message board?

I am looking for plans for Alexis Soyers "Model Kitchen" which was built by Tonge Coach builders in Dublin, Ireland circa 1847. (They may have evolved into Tonge & Taggart Ironworks, in the the North of Dublin)

Alexis Soyer was the Head Chef at the Reform Club in London, and came to Dublin at the request of the then British Government, to assist in Famine Relief.
Not only was he a gifted chef, he was also a talented engineer, who designed from scratch a kitchen capable of feeding 800 people a day. In fact the kitchen fed up to, and over , 7000 people a day. This man helped save countless lives in Ireland.
The only reward he received for this, was a engraved snuff box.

He also later fed thousands in London in Spittalfields, during the labour strikes, and was instrumental in the formation of the British Army Catering Corps during the Crimean war, where along with a certain Florence Nightingale, (who tends to get all the credit!) he again helped save thousands of lives in Scutari. He also designed and built the "Soyer Stove" which was in use by the British army up until the Falklands war.

I am hoping to raise funds to have a permanent memorial to Soyer established in Collins Barracks, Dublin (now a part of the National Museum) the site of his first "Model Kitchen"

The great famine is one of the hardest things to visualize- but if plans exist, (and there are none in the National archives-either in Dublin or at Kew, or at the Reform Club in London) I would be deeply obliged if I could have access to them. A working replica kitchen would be a tangible symbol of the Famine- and help with understanding of such a momentous event in Irish history.

I know this is a long shot- but if anyone has heard of these plans or has access to technical drawings of any "Famine Kitchen" of the period, or indeed the "Soyer Stove" I would be delighted to hear from you.

Kindest regards,
Colm Folan
Soyer Memorial Committee.
colmfolan
Member
 
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