This image of an ostrich playing the French Horn is dated 1939 and was on the menu cover of the Italian ocean liner SS Conte Verde.
The ship sailed between the Italian port of Trieste and Shanghai, via Suez, Bombay, Colombo. Singapore and Hong Kong in 24 days.
There was first, second and third-class passenger accommodation and we’re guessing that this card, in both Italian and English languages, was for first class passengers.
Music was played by an orchestra twice daily on deck as well as clay pigeon or clay target shooting. At night after dinner there was a concert and dancing and Mario the barman recommended the New Moon cocktail which definitely packed a punch with four types of alcohol including absinthe.
The SS Conte Verde was named in honor of Amadeus VI, the Count of Savoy (1334-1383) who was also known as the Green Count.
He earned the nickname the Green Count when, in celebration of his 19th birthday, he appeared in a series of tournaments dressed with green plumes on his helmet, a green silk tabard over his armor, and his horse bearing green ornamental headgear and harnesses. He entered with an escort of eleven knights dressed in green, each led by a lady also dressed in green, leading her knight's steed with a green cord. From then on, green was the favorite color for his clothes and for his court. Sounds like a hip kinda guy.
The Lloyd Triestino shipping company was founded in 1836 – see the coat of arms on the front of this menu – and ran passenger services on ocean liners around the world. By 2006, its business was mainly container freight and the company’s name changed to Italia Marittima.
You may be wondering why this ostrich is playing a French Horn… we’ve tried to find out without success, so the mystery remains.
Each order includes a print of the interior menu.
All printed in USA.