Seven senators sat in the Senate Restaurant on March 24, 1941, choosing between a lunch of mackerel, meat balls with spaghetti, and "cold shore platter." Europe already had been engulfed by World War II (1939-1945) for some 18 months and the senators speculated as to if and when and the United States would enter the war. While predictions, recorded on the back of the menu, ranged from "never." to "1961," the majority thought American involvement was imminent. Eight months later, on December 7, 1941, Japan attacked Pearl Harbor plunging the United States into the global conflict.
Senate restaurant employees preserved this menu, eventually donating it to the Senate Collection.