During WWII, growing vegetables was not only patriotic – in a country still pulling out of the Great Depression, it was economical. Those packet of asparagus seeds were 5 cents each, and beans just 10 cents. Continue reading Vegetables – Vitamins – Victory!
It’s hard to appreciate how many modern conveniences, particularly of the electronic variety, began their lives so awkwardly. This Sears-Exclusive device brought closed-captioning to your existing TV for the not-insignificant price of $249… Continue reading At least 20 hours a week of captioned programs!
It’s 1939, and your father drives a convertible Nash coupe. What do you want for your birthday? A pedal car that looks just like Dad’s! Continue reading Boys and their Toys
One hundred and fifteen years ago, it was understood by one and all that finer homes deserved having a reed organ in their parlor. If you wanted music, you had to play it yourself… Continue reading Every home deserves an organ
Charles Williams stores, ca 1927: Item B on this page is a men’s 3-piece suite that is “real snappy and full of pep” and priced at under $16. I don’t think Men’s Wearhouse has suits like this. Continue reading The ‘Gay White Way “Jazz” Suit’
When you think of hip clothing styles, I doubt J.C. Penny is top of mind or anywhere close. But here we are in 1969 and Penneys has snagged Mary Quant, one of the top fashion designers of Swinging Britain, to come up with a clothing line… Continue reading Penneys Gets Groovy
Once upon a time, Allstate wouldn’t just sell you car insurance coverage, they would sell you car seat covers. Such a thing barely exists nowadays, and certainly not looking like these examples… Continue reading Beauty that gives you that “New Car” thrill all over again…from Allstate
“The things you see here lay at the bottom of the South China Sea for 235 years.” The J. Peterman Company catalogs were as unusual as the products… Continue reading Sunken Treasure…Found by J. Peterman
In 1932 it looks like tuning a radio could have have caused seriously distracted driving, if this Western Auto catalog illustration is anything to go by…. Continue reading “The radio sounds lovely, but keep your eye on the wheel.”
“Edison and Music” Diamond Disc catalog, 1920 – Thomas Edison invented recorded music in 1878 to instant acclaim. It's funny, selling a product whose end result is music with nothing but words. But Edison's writers gave it their best shot… Continue reading The Phonograph with a Soul: Many Words about Music