Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Mystery of Motherlike Pies

My friend Lora recently gave me an old pie tin she found at a junk shop. The tin is a little too rusty to be used for pie baking now, but it makes for a nice kitchen ornament and addition to my collection of pie paraphernalia. Engraved in the tin are the words "Motherlike Pies C.P. CO."

I hadn't heard of the Motherlike Pie company and was curious about what, where, and when it was in operation, so I went to the trusty ol' internet, looking for answers. Some searching for "Motherlike Pies" didn't yield much. All I really got was a snippet of a website I couldn't actually access. It read,
What soldier of Camp Travis will ever forget those motherlike pies with their tooth- some crusts cov- ered with delicious ice cream, or those tarts and ...
Camp Tavis, eh? I did an additional search for Camp Travis, which was apparently a military training camp in San Antonio, Texas during World War I. Many of the men were from Texas and Oklahoma, though once they were shipped out, troops started arriving from other states.

I did another search for "Camp Travis & pies" and found this letter, from a soldier stationed there, writing to his family about his Thanksgiving dinner.

He writes,
Well the big feed is over and I’m back at the stables again, always when I get Guard Duty I can find time to write you a letter. I sure am as full as a tick……..I wasn’t hungry at all only ate 3 turkeys and dressing, 3 cakes, 2 pies, and a few side dishes.
Interesting stuff, though I couldn't find any more information connecting Motherlike Pies with Camp Travis. We know there were pies there (at least on Thanksgiving), but were they Motherlike? Did the government issued pies to be served on miltary bases and training camps?

Please let me know if you have any more information about this... for now it will remain a Motherlike mystery.


Kentucky Rising said...

does anyone out there know what the "c.p. co." might stand for?

or how to get on 'antiques roadshow'?


Anonymous said...

The pie tim most likely was/is from the H. Copperthite and Connecticut Pie Company(C.P.CO) founded by my Great Great Grand Father here in Washington DC. See attached Pictures and story. In 1903 his factories were turning out 10,000 pies a day. I was always told that one of the reasons the Dough Boy was called the Dough Boy in WWI was because our factories helped provide pies and the hard tack dough that went into the backpacks of the solders. We had contract to help feed the me who were training in the US and we had a factory in New Port News, VA one of the departure points for our troops heading to Europe to fight in the Great War.

I have tons of material and am looking for more. Let me know if you are interested.

The ad about opening on M Street in Georgetown was the day that WW I Started. Sending front page of that paper.

emily said...

Yes, 'teamsimple' I would LOVE to hear more about this and see pictures, story, and front page of the paper. Thanks so much for finding us and please get in touch! You can send more info to nothinginthehousepie at

Anonymous said...

Hello sent you a ton of pictures and and information and no response. in 1909 my family was producing 35,000 pies a day in Wasington, DC Alone.

emily said...

hi there,
sorry- there was a glitch in the e-mail for the blog and i was not receiving them, but just fixed it. thanks for sending all those amazing archival materials and photographs! what an interesting story. will post about them shortly.

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