Cindy Day, from Dutch Maid Bakery and Cafe in Tracy City, gave the Southern Tennessee Ladies’ Society a real “taste” of history during their October meeting. Really, she brought in a sampling of Tennessee whiskey cake, fruit cake, and moonshine cake.
The Dutch Maid Bakery is on the Historic Registry as Tennessee’s oldest family-owned bakery. It was founded in 1902, by John and Louise Baggenstoss, Swiss immigrants who moved to Tennessee in the 1880s. The Dutch Maid Bakery was rebuilt in the 1920s after an errant ember burned the bakery, but many of the ovens, mixers, and other pieces of equipment are the same ones that have been for generations. Cookies, cakes, breads, and pastries are made from scratch, the old-fashioned way.
The bakery stayed in the Baggenstoss family and extended family until 2003, at which point it was closed. Cindy Day saw the bakery for sale while visiting the area and immediately knew that she had to buy and restore the bakery to its former glory. After purchasing the bakery in 2005, Cindy and her family reopened Dutch Maid Bakery 18 months later, with the original spirit still intact. Cindy is the executive chef and baker. Surprisingly for its long history, she is only the third owner of the Dutch Maid. Part of the charm and down-home goodness comes from the quality ingredients and the old family recipes that were used by the Baggenstoss Family.
Cindy is proud to carry out the family traditions in more than one way. During the Depression, the Baggenstoss Family was known to ‘take in’ and care for many of the homeless boys throughout the rural county. Many of these boys survived those hard times by having a roof over their heads and a little food, even if it meant sleeping on the floor of the bakery in exchange for doing work for the store.
Cindy has a love and affection for children as well, being a mother to twelve children over her lifetime; including being a natural mom, foster, adoptive, step, and most recently, a mom to a foreign exchange student. Cindy has a very strong mantra, “If you could do something for someone and turn their life around, what would you do?” She believes in giving people a second chance and in that regard, the majority of her employees are being given a second chance and developing from varying degrees of drug rehabilitation. She looks for the best in everybody and wants them to feel like somebody believes in them and the unique gifts they have to share with the world.
2018 Holiday Market
The Southern Tennessee Ladies’ Society is excited to announce that the 2018 Holiday Market is sold out and will be showcasing over 40 booths on November 2, from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., and November 3, from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., at the Franklin County Annex Building in Winchester. This year, there are many new artists joining this free Arts and Crafts Fair, and will offer a large variety of homemade items like fresh magnolia wreaths, ornaments, jewelry, quilts, books, teas and spices, hand-painted items, and an assortment of cookies, cakes, and pies that can be frozen for the holidays. Most items are perfect for the gift giving season.
All proceeds from the Holiday Market Fundraiser are put into the STLS Scholarship Foundation. Scholarships are awarded each spring to high school seniors from Coffee, Franklin, Grundy, Lincoln, and Moore counties.
Group photos: Since Dutch Maid Bakery is based in Tracy City, we asked some of our Grundy County STLS members to jump in the photo. Left to Right: Pam Pickett, Pat Boston, Cindy Day (Owner, baker and tour guide), Cindy’s mom-Fran Enghdahl, Nelda Stiefl and STLS VP, Lois Brown from Franklin County.
Old photo with young boys: Long before labor laws were put into effect young Baggenstoss family members worked in the bakery alongside their dad
Old Delivery Truck photo: Old fashioned goodness was delivered by truck. These days stop in for breakfast, lunch or dinner and get a taste of history while touring and hiking around the Cumberland Plateau in Grundy County