The Genealogy Trails
A chuckwagon was originally a wagon that carried food and cooking equipment on the prairies of the United States
They would form a part of a wagon train of settlers or feed nomadic workers like cowboys or loggers.
"Chuck" was a slang term for food.
Chuckwagon food included easy-to-preserve items like beans and salted meats, coffee, and sourdough biscuits. During
the 1880s to 1890s the menu consisted of beans, beef, biscuits (sourdough type), salt pork, lick (molasses), rice,
dried fruit (mainly raisins, apples, and prunes), and, of course, coffee. Canned tomatoes, canned peaches, and
canned milk slowly became available on the northern range—Montana, the Dakotas and Wyoming—in the late 1880s; while
the southern range did not start importing airtights until the late 1890s. Various spices and herbs were available
and used by many of the range cooks, even in the very early days, to give variety to the meals.
[source: National Park Service]
Chuck Wagon Recipes from the Grant-Kohrs Ranch
a National Historic Site
Recipes from the "Sod House Museum Cookbook"
Meat, Fish and Poultry
-- Jellies and Syrups
Genealogy Trails Hosts
Recipes from Hometowns across America
Recipes we've transcribed from old cookbooks
(not just chuckwagon fare!)
Meat, Fish and Poultry -- Cheeses -- Jellies and Syrups
Breads -- Desserts -- Beverages
Recipes by State:
Rural electrification in the U.S.
"The electric range or stove in the American farm kitchen eliminates
the need of building fires, carrying fuel and emptying ashes, thus allowing the housewife at least ten more hours
per month for other tasks. Food for farm workers is cooked faster and better on an electric range, improving the
health and efficiency of the family. If the range has an automatic timer, food can be placed in the oven long before
it needs to start cooking; at the proper minute the heat will turn itself on and the cooking proceed at the proper
length of time, then turn itself off again, all without attention"
Source: Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information Photograph
Collection (Library of Congress)
The Genealogy Trails Chuck Wagon started rolling in 2008