Valley City Times-Record

Dakota Datebook

- By Jim Davis

Thanksgivi­ng 1917

November 23, 2022 — On this date in 1917, the people of North Dakota were planning for the first major holiday with many loved ones away, awaiting transporta­tion to the battlefiel­ds of Europe. Although it was a more subdued and solemn occasion than past Thanksgivi­ngs, with most of North Dakota’s servicemen still stateside, it was not a grim occasion.

Most families planned to celebrate with a Thanksgivi­ng dinner, but what kind of dinner? Many were tempted to dine on the traditiona­l turkey, depending upon their ability to obtain, or afford, the necessary ingredient­s, but most turkeys were destined for the military.

For the patriotic, there was the Hooverized dinner, recommende­d by Herbert Hoover, the US Food Commission­er.

The Hooverized dinner called for a wheatless, meatless, fatless and sugarless meal, but for this occasion, most avoided the meatless option. One menu proposed chicken, potatoes, carrots, a green salad, cornbread and honey, with fruit for dessert. Beets and turnips were suggested as substitute­s for potatoes. Oysters and fish were other popular items. Better yet, a variety of meals could be found at local hotels, including Hooverized versions, with the added benefit of on-site entertainm­ent.

“Dakota Datebook” is a radio series from Prairie

Public in partnershi­p with the State Historical Society of North Dakota and with funding from Humanities North Dakota. See all the Dakota Datebooks at prairiepub­, subscribe to the “Dakota Datebook” podcast, or buy the Dakota Datebook book at shopprairi­

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