Category Archives: Friday Foodie

Friday Foodie: H.H. Ellis’ Thanksgiving Turkey

‘Tis the season for cooking and baking! Starting today and running through December, we’d like to share some of the historical recipes from the collection.

Today’s featured cook is H.H. Ellis.

H.H. Ellis emigrated to America from Germany in 1849 and married an English transplant, settling in Wisconsin and opening a restaurant. The Ellis family moved to Cheyenne soon after the town was founded and opened the 444 Monkies Oyster Bay restaurant, where they served meals as well as handmade confections and introduced ice cream to the city. His son, Lem, continued the family business, operating a candy store and soda fountain in downtown.

The original Oyster Bar Restaurant sign hangs in the Wyoming State Museum.

The original Oyster Bay Restaurant sign hangs in the Wyoming State Museum.

H.H. Ellis’ original recipe book is preserved in the Archvies’ collection. The note in the front cover says that he brought it with him from Wisconsin and the book includes instructions for making industrial sized batches of many different sweets as well as directions for concocting specialty sodas, sandwiches and other savory meals.

Interior of the Ellis Candy Shop, 1897. (WSA J.E. Stimson Collection Neg 4039)

Interior of the Ellis Candy Shop, 1897.
(WSA J.E. Stimson Collection Neg 4039)

Since Thanksgiving is right around the corner, how about a peek at how Ellis prepared a turkey?

IMG_1514 deriv

H.H. Ellis’ recipe book & letterhead
(WSA H2004-30, H70-38)

Boned Turkey

Commence along the back to take the bone out.


Chop some veal fine and pound it fine in a mortar, 3/4 veal, 1/4 salt pork.

Seasoning, black pepper, cyean [sic] pepper, ground allspice, clove, salt, and Worcestershire sauce.

To Fill the Turkey

Spread it out first sprinkle a little seasoning on it. Then a lare [sic] of stuffing. Then a lare [sic] of pork & veal, cut in long shreds. Then a lare [sic] of stuffing. Put seasoning on every lare [sic]. Sew it up and stuff the legs in. Put it in a cloth, tie it up tight. It will take 3 1/4 slow boiling to cooke [sic]. Press them after they are cooked.


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