SHORPY Historic Photo Archive & Fine-Art Prints
The Shorpy Archive
6000+ fine-art prints suitable for framing. Desk-size to sofa-size and larger, on archival paper or canvas.
Join and Share

Social Shorpy

Syndicate content
Syndicate content
Syndicate content
Daily e-mail updates:

Member Photos

Photos submitted by Shorpy members.

Colorized Photos

Colorized photos submitted by members.

About the Photos

Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

JUMP TO PAGE   100  >  200  >  300  >  400  >  500  >  600

Yam and Eggs: 1943

Yam and Eggs: 1943

June 1943. Keysville, Virginia. "Randolph Henry High School. Cafeteria. Students don't have much money so they bring produce from farms for which they receive tickets. Lunches cost about 15 cents. Typical lunch: candied yams, macaroni and cheese, fruit salad, deviled eggs, dessert and milk. Milk is free and children can have as much as they want." Let's not forget beans, which seem to be in abundance. Photo by Philip Bonn, Office of War Information. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5


Was just at a family reunion in this area last week. Wouldn't be surprised if these guys still live in the area. Wish I'd seen this photo before this past weekend. I'd have taken it with me to show to those who are of a similar age as these guys. Randolph-Henry High School, by the way, is not in Keysville, but is in the county seat of Charlotte Court House. It was built in 1938 and named for John Randolph and Patrick Henry.

The big difference

Back in the day, way, way back, our cafeteria ladies were stay-at home moms who were strictly volunteers and they started working on each days lunch early in the morning when school started. Everything was made fresh, just as at home, and there was preparation and labor required. Each item listed there in this 1943 caption took some effort and stuff did not come hermetically sealed in individual plastic or foil portions with "use by" dates, but was lovingly spooned out with satisfaction to all the hungry, grateful kids from the proud moms who made the meals with love. The aromas were tantalizing and the meals relished by the grateful students. We even had ethnic menus from the many, diversified nationalities of the ladies who cooked there and also festive holiday food events. We never knew about hot dogs made with dubious meat-like products, fast food, wheat pizza with kale, or other frankenfoods. Just loving moms creating healthy, real food from scratch before the government got involved. (Our meals cost 25 cents and those who brought lunch from home could still eat at the same table with their friends). Those days are gone forever but it taught me to acquire a taste for foods from all nationalities and to 'try' new, unfamiliar things, something that stays with me even today.

I Wonder What's On His Mind

It's June, school is about to be finished. Is our young man in the middle mooning over the little cutie across the way or is he thinking of the odds that his number will be called soon after he registers for the draft. The class ring tells me that he is at least a Junior, more likely a Senior. Those years were a time of real uncertainty and dread for high school boys. I know it was for me in the early '70's. Thankfully that one ended before I graduated.

Public School 53, The Bronx

I was in the 5th grade at PS53 at the time this picture was taken. The NYC Board of Education had a free lunch program for needy students and I was fortunate enough not to have to participate. The lunches were served in the Boy's Gymnasium on public park sized picnic tables. The signature dish was tomato soup and the odor remained in that Gym full time. I didn't like tomato soup then and still don't.

The Aroma

The classroom must have smelled pretty good in the late afternoon after the typical lunch of candied yams, macaroni and cheese, deviled eggs, all the free milk and let's not forget the abundance of beans.

A highly nutritious lunch.

Millions of high school students around the world in 1943 would envy the lunch these young fellows are eating.

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

Syndicate content RSS | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Photo Use | © 2018 Shorpy Inc.