Harvey Girl, Doris Lee, ca. 1946
Courtesy Julian Harvey
Photo by Blair Clark
In 1946, MGM studios released “The Harvey Girls,” a musical starring Judy Garland. Based on a 1942 Samuel Hopkins Adam novel, the film follows a young mail-order bride traveling West who instead chooses the life of a Harvey Girl. It won an Oscar for its song, “On The Atchison Topeka & the Santa Fe.” The studio commissioned artist Doris Lee to travel across the country sketching interiors, costumes, and other details. Lee later created paintings based on these sketches; the Fred Harvey Company featured them on a variety of menus.