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Interpreting the Evidence

Breakfast Menu, S.S. Coamo of the Porto Rico Line, 1935

  • Documents in this Activity:
  • Historical Eras:

    The Great Depression and WW II (1929 - 1945)

  • Thinking Skill:

    Historical Analysis & Interpretation

  • Grade Level:

    Upper Elementary
    Middle School
    High School
    College University

  • Topics:


  • Primary Source Types:

    Written Document

  • Regions:

    New York City

  • Creator:

    NYS Archives Partnership Trust Education Team

  1. Load Breakfast Menu, S.S. Coamo of the Porto Rico Line, 1935 in Main Image Viewer

Suggested Teaching Instructions

Document Description
Breakfast menu for Tuesday, October 29, 1935, on the S.S. Coamo of the Porto Rico Line.
Historical Context
The New York and Porto Rico Steamship Company ran from 1873 to 1949 under many different owners and operators. However, in spite of all of the changes, the line always served passengers traveling between New York City and San Juan.

In 1873 Archibald H. Bull began the line as a passenger steamship company consisting of British ships and sailing under a British flag. When Puerto Rico became part of the United States, Bull changed to American-made ships and sailed under the American flag. This change marked the beginning of the New York and Puerto Rico Steamship Company. The company changed hands many times, but always served the people of Puerto Rico and America.
Essential Question
How do existing populations view immigrants?
Check for Understanding
Determine the audience for this menu and explain why these foods were chosen.
Historical Challenges
What was going on in the United States during the 1930s? Would this be a typical meal for most people at that time?
Find out what happened to the S.S. Coamo during World War II.
Interdisciplinary Connections
Home and Career: Write a dinner and lunch menu for the S.S. Coamo for the time period.
Art: Make a poster advertising a trip to New York City from San Juan on the S.S. Coamo. What kind of service would a person expect?
English Language Arts: Locate a breakfast menu from a cruise ship today. Write down the similarities and differences from the one on the Porto Rico Line.