On Christmas day in 1930, The Indianapolis Star featured the culinary adventures of a bride-to-be from Richmond, Indiana. In attempting to dispatch her plucky-but-unplucked holiday turkey in a humane manner, the young woman had chloroformed the feisty fowl before defeathering and then refrigerating it overnight. As the Star recorded, when “she opened the refrigerator the next morning, the turkey had recovered from the chloroform and although weak from the plucking and cold” …was still alive. The naked bird was chloroformed again until “thoroughly dead” and roasted in the oven. Not surprisingly, the fowl tasted foul. Indeed, the “turkey had been so thoroughly chloroformed that neither hostess nor guests could partake of it.” (Copyright © the American Society of Anesthesiologists’ Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology.)

On Christmas day in 1930, The Indianapolis Star featured the culinary adventures of a bride-to-be from Richmond, Indiana. In attempting to dispatch her plucky-but-unplucked holiday turkey in a humane manner, the young woman had chloroformed the feisty fowl before defeathering and then refrigerating it overnight. As the Star recorded, when “she opened the refrigerator the next morning, the turkey had recovered from the chloroform and although weak from the plucking and cold” …was still alive. The naked bird was chloroformed again until “thoroughly dead” and roasted in the oven. Not surprisingly, the fowl tasted foul. Indeed, the “turkey had been so thoroughly chloroformed that neither hostess nor guests could partake of it.” (Copyright © the American Society of Anesthesiologists’ Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology.)

George S. Bause, M.D., M.P.H., Honorary Curator and Laureate of the History of Anesthesia, Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology, Schaumburg, Illinois, and Clinical Associate Professor, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio. UJYC@aol.com.