Thank you DesBrisay Museum!

I am trying to live as close to 100% on an authentic WWII ration diet as possible to lose 100 lbs in one year. So far by changing my daily diet to eat simply and carefully as families did in wartime 1940’s I have lost 26 lbs over 9 weeks without even trying to diet…

In my quest for authenticity and with ‘Thanksgiving’ looming here in Nova Scotia, Canada, I recently e-mailed the DesBrisay Museum in my local town to see if they could assist me in putting together a typical 1940’s wartime Thanksgiving meal. What could I eat and what couldn’t I eat???

Here was the reply- thank you DesBrisay Museum!

Hi Carolyn:

Your research request has been passed to me for response. On short notice, I have quickly checked with a lady who volunteers at the Legion in Bridgewater to see if she recollects what a family would have at dinner during war time.

She said since she lived in the country they would normally have their own animals, i.e. chickens, turkey, and their own gardens full with vegetables and anything they could grow, such as potatoes, turnip, carrots. They probably had an apple tree in their yard as well and would make apple pie for dessert. She said that country people would be better off than city people who would have to go to a farmer’s market. She said each family would be given ration stamps for sugar, tea, butter etc. they would cash in at the local store for things that they could not grow themselves. We have a sample in the museum of some of these ration books in our military case.

It sounds like they pretty much ate what we eat now.

I would suggest you talk to some seniors at a nursing home but most of them were from the country too. Might be a fun project sometime to visit Hillside Pines and speak with the residents about this sort of stuff.

Enjoy your thanksgiving dinner.


Linda Bedford, Curator

DesBrisay Museum

130 Jubilee Road

Mail: c/o 60 Pleasant Street

Bridgewater, N.S. B4V 3X9

902-543-4033 / fax 543-4713


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