According to an essay written by Andrew Sigal (sigal.org), the first reference to the word "Jambalaya" in the english language was in a recipe published in the American Agriculturalist in 1849. The recipe was written by Solon Robinson while in Mobile during a tour of the American South. The first cookbook to publish a recipe for "Jam Bolaya" was the Gulf City Cookbook that was published in Mobile in 1878. Perhaps not coincidentally, the second reference to "Jambalaya" in a cookbook was in What Mrs. Fisher Knows about Old Southern Cooking. Though published in San Francisco in 1881, Mrs. Fisher had moved to California from Mobile.
Of course I love cooking the food I grew up with in Italy, but, I also love cooking the traditional gulf coast fare and one of my favorites is Mobile's own Jam Bolaya!