Cover image for Duncan Hines : the man behind the cake mix
Duncan Hines : the man behind the cake mix
Hatchett, Louis.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
Macon, GA : Mercer University Press, [2001]

Physical Description:
xii, 325 pages : portraits ; 24 cm
Personal Subject:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
HC102.5.H56 H38 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



While the name Duncan Hines is presently associated with cake mix, from the Depression to the mid-1950s, the name was most commonly associated with a series of guidebooks pointing travelers to the best restaurants, hotels/motels, and vacation destinations. These books were overwhelmingly popular, outpacing even the venerable Michelin Guide. Prior to Hines, finding good food or safe lodging was a hit-or-miss proposition: restaurants were often unsanitary and the food of poor quality. Hines was trusted by his readers because of his adamant refusal to accept advertising or payment of any kind from the establishments he recommended. Hines developed and nurtured a reputation for unimpeachable fairness and exactingly high standards of quality and cleanliness. Because of the popularity of his guidebooks and on the strength of his reputation, he almost single-handedly transformed the expectations of the restaurant-going public and thus indirectly transformed the hospitality industry in the United States. In the 1950s, in partnership with North Carolinian Roy Park, Duncan Hines sold the rights to his name to be used on a line of grocery items, including coffee, ice cream, canned vegetables, and of course, cake mix. These products sold extremely well at premium prices, because shoppers associated Hines' name with quality and cleanliness. Not without reason: just as Hines had exacting standards for restaurants and hotels, he had very high standards for any food product bearing his name.

Author Notes

Louis B. Hatchett, Jr. is an independent scholar and writer from Henderson, Kentucky.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. ix
Introductionp. 1
Chapter 1 Bowling Greenp. 4
Chapter 2 Out Westp. 18
Chapter 3 Florencep. 27
Chapter 4 Chicagop. 33
Chapter 5 Leave Me Alone or I'll Publish a Book!p. 48
Chapter 6 The Dinner Detectivesp. 56
Chapter 7 Florence Hines's Last Yearp. 64
Chapter 8 Those Who Make Us Wish for Hollow Legsp. 83
Chapter 9 Back Home Again in Bowling Greenp. 99
Chapter 10 Life Changesp. 109
Chapter 11 A Few Pet Peevesp. 122
Chapter 12 The War Yearsp. 140
Chapter 13 Clarap. 152
Chapter 14 Let's Watch Him Eatp. 164
Chapter 15 Enter Roy Parkp. 179
Chapter 16 The World of Duncan Hinesp. 198
Chapter 17 The Office Lifep. 205
Chapter 18 Passing the Torchp. 222
Chapter 19 Duncan Hines Goes to Europep. 235
Chapter 20 We Dedicate This Box...p. 249
Chapter 21 Aftermathp. 260
Notesp. 267
Bibliographyp. 299
Indexp. 319