San Francisco Peaks 1961 Dinner Menu

Louis Benton Akin (1868-1913) was born in Corvallis and and raised in Portland, Oregon and studied painting in New York. In 1903, the Santa Fe paid his way to Arizona so he could paint images of Hopi Indians to use in railway advertising. He lived in a Hopi pueblo for a year, learning the language and eventually being initiated into a secret society.

Click image to download a 1.3-MB PDF of this menu.

After returning to New York for two years, he moved permanently to Flagstaff in 1906. His 1907 painting of the El Tovar Hotel managed to get both the hotel and the canyon in one image. Akin was a victim of tuberculosis and the Arizona climate helped his condition. However, he unfortunately died of pneumonia at the age of 44 and was buried, as he requested, facing the San Francisco Peaks that are the subject of this painting.

This dinner menu was used on the Super Chief, so naturally everything was first class. Although sirloin steak is on the table d’hôte menu for $4.50 (more than $36 today) or $3.25 a la carte, so is filet mignon, which for some reason (probably size) was only $3.75 ($30 today). Other entrées include poached bass, roast turkey, French lamb chops, extra thick lamb chop, tenderloin steak, double sirloin steak, and more. Desserts include Hungarian Dobosh cake, pound cake, strawberry sundae, and blueberry pie.

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