News You Can Use: Au­thor pens a de­li­cious read

Cecil Whig - - JUMPSTART - By AL­LIE CHARLES Spe­cial to the Whig

The Elkton li­brary is host­ing a mouth-wa­ter­ing pro­gram this Au­gust all food­ies will en­joy: the his­tory of the sub­ma­rine sand­wich! Lo­cal au­thor Vince Watchorn is writ­ing a new book called “A Meal in One: The His­tory of the Sub­ma­rine Sand­wich.” I got a chance to ask Watchorn a few ques­tions about his book and re­search.

Al­lie Charles: Why are they called “sub­ma­rine” sand­wiches?

Vince Watchorn: Long story short, they are called “sub­marines” be­cause the roll re­sem­bles a sub­mersible naval ves­sel. The longer story ap­pears to be that an Ital­ian gro­cer in the 1920s saw a mil­i­tary sub­ma­rine for the first time and thought it looked like the “Ital­ian sand­wich” he had been mak­ing in his shop, and named one af­ter the other. What’s re­ally in­ter­est­ing is that there are other ar­eas of the coun­try where a sim­i­larly-shaped sand­wich took on a dif­fer­ent name be­cause of a dif­fer­ent as­so­ci­a­tion. For ex­am­ple, Nor­ris­town, Pa., of­fers a “zep­pelin” sand­wich, and in Buf­falo, N.Y., one can pur­chase a Tor­pedo!

A.C.: What in­spired your re­search?

V.W.: It was a com­bi­na­tion of a num­ber of in­ter­ests: I love subs and cheese steaks, have a life-long fas­ci­na­tion with Ital­ian-Amer­i­can cul­ture and the fo­cus of my his­tor­i­cal writ­ing is the his­tory of Wilm­ing­ton, Del.

The true im­pe­tus for this pro­ject is that I worked at Yatz’ Sub Shop, in Wilm­ing­ton, dur­ing col­lege (they of­fered me a job be­cause I was in there all the time as a cus­tomer any­way). The own­ers were the grand­sons of the man who had opened Wilm­ing­ton’s first sub shop in 1935, and they had a classic pho­to­graph of him on the wall. The photo stood for so much to me and I wanted to see it en­tered into Wilm­ing­ton’s for­mal his­tor­i­cal record one way or an­other.

I was ex­cited about it, though, and started pulling on the string, ex­pect­ing to write a brief cou­ple pages. Dig­ging deeper, it turned out that Wilm­ing­ton holds a re­ally sig­nif­i­cant place in the de­vel­op­ment of the sub into a na­tional item. I was hooked, and I have truly never had more fun writ­ing any­thing in my en­tire life.

A.C.: When’s the pub­li­ca­tion date for your book?

V.W.: Cedar Tree Press ex­pects pub­li­ca­tion by the end of 2017.

“A Meal in One: The His­tory of the Sub­ma­rine Sand­wich” will take place Mon­day, Aug. 14 at 7 p.m. at the Elkton Cen­tral Branch. Call 410-996-5600 ex­ten­sion 481 or go on­line to regis­ter to­day.

Each week, li­brar­i­ans at Ce­cil County Pub­lic Li­brary will use their in­for­ma­tion and re­search ex­per­tise to high­light re­sources, tools and ideas ex­plor­ing a va­ri­ety of top­ics, such as small busi­ness, job seek­ing, dig­i­tal ser­vices, tech­nol­ogy, read­ing and learn­ing. For in­for­ma­tion as­sis­tance on to­day’s topic or oth­ers, con­tact them: ask@cc­plnet.org, face­book. com/ ce­cil­coun­ty­pub­li­cli­brary, 410-996-5600 x481 or ce­cil. ebranch.info.

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