Holiday dinners are special for the traditional food and decorations, and for families and friends gathering to celebrate.
I searched the collection for images of holiday meals, and the ones that stood out featured soldiers and sailors. In these images, enlisted men are celebrating Christmas far from home.
This postcard from 1917 taken at the U.S. Naval Station Great Lakes shows young sailors having their Christmas dinner. I find this image particularly sweet as they smile for the camera, making the best of being away from home. Even though the table is crowded with so many seated for dinner, it also appears festive with white china and greenery for centerpieces.
This is the back of the Christmas Dinner postcard. Oddly, it is postmarked June 17, 1918. Maybe it was the only postcard available or it evoked the "Great life up here" that he writes about in the message.
This Christmas dinner was held at Fort Sheridan, circa 1930. At each place setting, the coffee cup is turned upside down and an apple is set on top. There are also gift items on each plate, including a pack of cigarettes and a cigar. The meal consists of pies, roasted meat, mashed potatoes and butter.
This photo was taken in the Officers Club at Fort Sheridan, December 6, 1967. The room is decorated for the Officers Wives Club Christmas tea. A white aluminum Christmas tree with tinsel is prominently displayed at the center of the tables. Look closely you may be able to see that the platters of hors d'oeuvres include some in the shape of snowmen.