From The Practical Cook Book 1850
Potatoes are best when perfectly ripe; new potatoes are not fit to eat until fully grown. The water in the boiling pot should always boil before the potatoes are put in. If the potatoes are to be boiled with their skin on, they should have a bit cut from each end to allow the steam to escape when taken from the pot.
New potatoes require but twenty minutes to boil; when they have been long out of the ground, a longer time will be required to boil them; when boiled enough, turn off the water, sprinkle salt upon them, shake the pot, place it close to the fire for two or three minutes, to dry the potatoes, and then dish up. They should never be sent to the table with their skins on. Old potatoes should be pared and soaked in water for an hour before boiling.
Potatoes may be served in various forms. When boiled tender put two or three - according to their size - in a cloth, and pound them with a wooden spoon; then squeeze them tightly, and drop them upon your dish in a white ball.
Or you may make them up in the form of a pear, egg them over, and brown in the oven.
Or you may mash them with a little milk, butter, and salt, and make them into any form you prefer.
Or you may slice them, and warm them in a soup of milk, butter and salt.
Or you may slice them, and fry them with a little salt sprinkled over them.
Potatoes are essential to every dinner, and an ingenious cook will vary the manner of serving them indefinitely. To eat with roast pork, they should be baked or roasted in the ashes."