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Smithsonian

Thanksgiving Menu, 1905

Smithsonian Snapshot celebrates the Thanksgiving season with this 1905 Thanksgiving menu by George Elbert Burr from the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

In the early 20th century, Burr worked as an illustrator for several magazines including Harper’s,Cosmopolitan and Frank Leslie’s Weekly Newspaper, the same newspaper in which Winslow Homer provided illustrations.

In 1905, Burr created this menu for a Thanksgiving dinner that included mashed potatoes, English plum pudding, Charlotte Russe dessert and of course, the turkey, illustrated here in a simple pen, ink and watercolor drawing.

To learn more about the history of the Thanksgiving holiday and how studying food can help teach visitors about American history, visit the National Museum of American History website.

This object is one of 137 million artifacts, works of art and specimens in the Smithsonian’s collection. It is currently not on display. To learn more about this item, visit the Smithsonian American Art Museum website.