Friday, November 28, 2014

Dinner for One Dollar and Fifty Cents

From our collection of antique paper we have a Dinner Menu used on the Great Northern Railway around 1915, plus or minus a year or two.

On the front of the menu we like the portrait of James J. Hill.  According to Wiki... "James Jerome Hill (September 16, 1838 – May 29, 1916), was a Canadian-American railroad executive. He was the chief executive officer of a family of lines headed by the Great Northern Railway, which served a substantial area of the Upper Midwest, the northern Great Plains, and Pacific Northwest. Because of the size of this region and the economic dominance exerted by the Hill lines, Hill became known during his lifetime as The Empire Builder."

Now, when you hear someone say, "He/She is just building an empire" you will know what they mean. And, it is no surprise that the Great Northern named their premier passenger train after Hill, calling it The Empire Builder.

The interior of the menu is shown below. A full dinner, for $1.50 with your choice of either Fried Spring Chicken or Grilled Sirloin Steak. Just for fun we used the online inflation calculator to see that the same dinner today would cost you about $35.26.

When was the last time you saw a menu in a restaurant with this statement: "Suggestions for betterment invited."

Thank you for stopping by John's Island.


  1. I don't think most of them would like our opinion, right John? Very interesting find.

  2. It's amazing to see how much inflation is in our currency. That is an incredible meal, but for $35 it seems just about right. :-)

  3. wow. the inflation calculation puts it back into perspective!

  4. Some difference in the pricing from then and now. Thank goodness salaries have gone up too. : )

  5. Sounds so cheap,until you think of the wages back then.Thanks for all your wonderful comments on my blog,they are an encouragement.


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