This post contains affiliate links AND a sponsored giveaway featuring the North Platte Canteen.

My claims from yesterday on wanting to be more of a gourmet cook were put to the test already.  Trying to scrounge together a quick lunch for my husband and kids before I went out the door felt challenging.  Pulling meat from the freezer, refried beans from the cupboard, leftover shredded cheeses from the fridge and packaged tostadas from my cupboard seemed like a lot of effort.  Then I remembered the ladies of the North Platte Canteen.  I realized that  I do not have a clue of what serving other means.

This week I read the book, Once Upon a Town by Bob Greene.  Subtitled The Miracle of the North Platte Canteen, this tells the tale of a community effort.  World War 2 was a tough time in this country.  Keeping up morale was a challenge. The call of a train whistle was the sound of troops going off to train for war.  This book takes a look at the untold stories and is definitely an enjoyable read!

For four years, people from in and around North Platte met every single troop train passing through their town with nourishing meals and hot cups of coffee.  This was a volunteer effort that required both sacrifice and service.  Scrounging through my cupboards for lunch fixings was nothing compared to what these ladies did.  Giving up their ration cards for soldiers.  Waking up early to make multiple meals and cakes by hand, then driving many miles often to make a difference.  They truly made an effort on behalf of freedom.

The Giveaway … (This giveaway is closed, but I still recommend that you purchase these books – they would be a great addition to your library!)

If you are inspired by this story and would like to learn more, I have a copy of Once Upon a Town by Bob Greene to giveaway.  While it is not a challenging read, some of the topics are definitely geared for adults.  That is why I am excited that I also get to give away a copy of North Platte Canteen: An Account of Heartland Hospitality Along the Union Pacific Railroad by James Reisdorff.    This black and white photography book is geared more for the younger set.  These books will both be given away courtesy of Visit North Platte.

The North Platte Canteen story has always been an inspiration to me.  If you want to see more about the canteen, I highly recommend that you visit the Lincoln County Museum in North Platte.  I wrote about how much I enjoyed my visit a few years ago. To win the books giveaway, all you need to do is comment below on what is an inspiration to you.  Thanks!

Author: neodyssey

My name is Gretchen Garrison. I started this blog about Nebraska in 2013. So far, I have written three books about Nebraska and Lincoln.