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Blue Plate Special: 1940

Blue Plate Special: 1940

June 1940. Washington, D.C. "In the cafe at a truck drivers' service station on U.S. 1." The truck stop menu starring "Blue Plate Lunch," with cameos by Dr. Pepper and Cold Liver Loaf. 35mm negative by Jack Delano. View full size.


Mmmm, the aromas!

What a tantalizing menu! I'd love to eat there, but even going inside of it and just smelling the food would have been a treat!

I don't know what a pork roll would have been, but I do know what fresh ham was, the same part of a pig as smoked ham, but not smoked or cured. More than 30 years ago, I prepared one for a Christmas dinner, for 17 people. It was delicious!

Cheap Eats

The menu price of 30 cents in 1940 is equivalent to $4.91 in today's dollar. Still not bad for a Blue Plate Special.

No fast food here

And no misspellings, either. The cold liver loaf was probably very much like liverwurst or braunschweiger. Everything on the menu was probably cooked right in the kitchen. Pretty heavy lunches, but I don't see a single overweight diner.

THE 100-YEAR-OLD PHOTO BLOG | History in HD is a vintage photo blog featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1950s. The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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