Skip to main content

L.S. Ayres and Company Tea Room menus

 Collection — Folder: S3352
Identifier: S3352

Scope and Contents

This collection includes photocopies of an L.S. Ayres Tea Room menu from June 22, 1940 and two copies of the Indiana State Museum's L.S. Ayres & Co. Tea Room menu and a menu cover (circa 2000s).


  • 1940-circa 2000s


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Rare Books and Manuscripts, Indiana State Library, Indianapolis, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Historical Note

The L.S. Ayres & Company began is 1872 when Lyman S. Ayres bought controlling interest in the N.R. Smith Trading Palace. Located in Indianapolis, Indiana and first known as N.R. Smith and Ayres, by 1874 Smith's name was dropped and the store became known as L.S. Ayres & Company. A new flagship store was built at Washington and Meridian Streets in 1905 and included the Tea Room, an elegant dining room for shoppers that was considered "one of the show places of Indianapolis." The Tea Room closed in 1990, but several years later the Indiana State Museum recreated it as a Christmas holiday attraction. Due to its popularity, the Tea Room became a permanent reproduction in the museum and is open to the public during the winter holiday season and throughout the year as a private dining facility.


Potempa, Philip. "L.S. Ayres Tea Room Still Indiana's Christmas Tradition." Chicago Tribune, December 30, 2016.

Turchi, Kenneth L. L.S. Ayres & Company: The Store at the Crossroads of America. Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society Press, 2012.


0.02 Cubic Feet (1 folder)

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged chronologically.

Custodial History

This collection was received by Rare Books and Manuscripts as a purchase from State of Indiana Surplus on 2013/10/17.


No further additions are expected.

Related Archival Material

Materials relating to this collection may be found in the following collections in Rare Books and Manuscripts, Indiana State Library, Indianapolis, IN:

V115: L.S. Ayres scrapbook

Processing Information

Collection processing completed 2018/06/19 by Laura Eliason. EAD finding aid created 2018/06/19 by Laura Eliason.
L.S. Ayres and Company Tea Room menus
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Repository

140 North Senate Avenue
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204 U.S.A.