Still finalizing your Thanksgiving menu? Look no further! Within the holdings of the National Archives, you can find many favorite recipes from the First Families, as well as recipes prepared by White House kitchen staff for special events through the years.
The Harry S. Truman Presidential Library recently digitized and added many of First Lady Bess Truman’s recipes to the Catalog. Several of these recipes are favorites that Mrs. Truman shared with family and friends, or contributed to charity cookbooks.
It isn’t too late to add some of these tasty (and historic!) recipes to your Thanksgiving table. This selection of dishes from Mrs. Truman’s recipe box is sure to please your guests!
Bess Truman’s Ozark Pudding was one of President Truman’s favorite desserts, and was published in various newspapers in the days leading up to the 1949 Inaugural, as part of the human interest stories about the Trumans. A number of newspapers made mistakes with the recipe, misprinting quantities, or leaving ingredients out entirely, and Mrs. Truman received some criticism about this recipe. Sugar and butter were still fairly expensive, valuable ingredients to waste on a dessert you had to chisel out of the pan, according to some people who wrote to her.
The infamous Ozark Pudding clearly didn’t work out for the “Disgusted Housewife” who wrote a rather harsh letter to Mrs. Truman complaining that hers repeatedly overflowed the pan: “The next time you sign your name to a recipe, and before you are paid for doing so, kindly try the recipe out first and avoid making a fool of yourself and hundreds of respectable housewives.”
We reached a BIG milestone! As of this month, 500,000 pages in the National Archives Catalog have been enhanced by Citizen Archivists. That means 500,000 pages of historical records are now easier to find in the Catalog, thanks to your contributions of tags, transcriptions, and comments!
This Thanksgiving, we are grateful for all of our citizen archivists who help unlock history and make the records of the National Archives more accessible. Here are the users that contributed within the 24-hour period that brought us to 500,000 pages enhanced!