Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Black Label Beer Ad - Nov. 22, 1955

I guess I have a strange fascination with vintage beer ads, since I feature so many of them on a blog that’s supposedly about Lorain County.

The two brands I’ve written about – Old Dutch and Carling’s Black Label – both had strong ties to the area since they were brewed in Northern Ohio. As a result, they seemed to run a lot of ads in the Lorain Journal in the 1950s.

The Black Label ad above ran in the Lorain Journal on November 22, 1955, two days before Thanksgiving. It features a great bottle illustration and of course, the lovely Mabel herself. It was part of a campaign that month that included the similar ad at left.

Carling’s Black Label is particularly interesting to me because of how it became so popular so quickly. The “Hey, Mabel – Black Label” tagline was brilliant in its simplicity, and the sense of fun and goodwill it generated. And even after Jeanne Goodspeed – the original Mabel in the TV commercials and ads – retired from modeling to start a family, the brand continued to cruise along successfully, using clips from her earlier commercials and even an animated Mabel in new ads. The beer's great taste and the memorable musical theme helped as well.

Anyway, I’ve taken a lot of abuse at work due to my lowbrow tastes in beer. Even recently, after I confessed that I had some Black Label in my fridge right now, a co-worker looked me straight in the eye and sternly stated, “Dan, it’s a bad beer.”

If I’m not careful, I’m going to find myself in the middle of a beer intervention.


Tuesday, November 21, 2017

TV Listings – November 9, 1956

The TV pages in the back of the Journal during the 50s and 60s were a memorable part of the newspaper for those of us that read it back then.

Placing the TV programming grid and various entertainment features in the last full spread of the newspaper (right after the comic pages) made for a pleasant and logical conclusion to the reading experience. (If I was the editor of the Morning Journal, I would revive that well-remembered aspect of the paper from its glory years.)

And when holidays rolled around, you could always count on seeing publicity photos promoting seasonal television fare.

With Thanksgiving approaching, the Journal TV page from November 9, 1956 (a portion of which is shown above) was no exception. We have a big photo of Jan Murray, the host of Treasure Hunt, and Pat White, one of the “Pirate Girl” models on the show, dressed like pilgrims. (Sadly, Miss White passed away this year).

I remember Jan Murray from his appearances on other game shows, but didn’t realize he was a host himself, and that he created the original Treasure Hunt. (I do remember watching the later version of the show, which by then didn’t have the pirate theme.)

Anyway, if you look closely at the TV program listings, there’s some interesting things you might remember. The occasional quarter hour listings are something that I’d forgotten; often the news was just a 15-minute show. The following morning’s programs were included in the listings as well, since the Journal was an evening paper back then.

There’s a few things of interest in the program listings. While many local TV children’s show hosts are well-remembered (such as Barnaby and Captain Penny), I see one that is not as well-known: Mr. Lollipops. According to the Cleveland Classic Media blog, the Geppetto-like Mr. Lollipops was played by Cleveland TV veteran Joe Berg. (You can see a photo of him here on the North East Ohio TV Memories blog).

Saturday morning kiddie fare included Howdy Doody, ventriloquist Jimmy Nelson, Captain Kangaroo, and old Mighty Mouse cartoons.

There’s also a children's show I’d never heard of before called The Friendly Giant, which later become a long-running staple of Canadian programming beginning in 1958.


“Badge 714” – the syndicated reruns of Dragnet – was being shown at seven in the evening on Friday night on Channel 8. It’s a good example of how a popular show’s syndicated version was renamed to avoid confusion with new episodes.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Bazely Cash Market Thanksgiving Ad – Nov. 19, 1956

I don't believe I've ever featured an ad for Bazley Cash Market before on the blog, despite a suggestion by a reader to do just that several years ago.

The above Thanksgiving-themed ad appeared in the Lorain Journal on November 19, 1956.

I got a kick out of the apron-wearing turkey clerk, eagerly taking phone orders for (shudder) his own kind for a Thanksgiving repast.

Until I prepared this post, I had thought that Bazley Cash Market was a standalone Lorain store. It turns out that it was in fact a regional chain of meat markets, with about 45 outlets in Illinois, Michigan, Iowa, Indiana and Ohio.

Here’s an ad dating all the way back to 1916. It appeared in the Owosso, Michigan Daily Argus on September 23, 1916.

Bazley Cash Market  first showed up in the Lorain City Directories in the 1926 edition, located at 622 Broadway. The store moved to 630 Broadway in the early 1930s.

By the late 1930s, Bazley Cash Market had arrived at its longtime home at 704 Broadway.

The store disappeared from the Lorain City Directory in the 1967 edition.

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Do a lot of people still make egg nog part of their Thanksgiving?

That’s a good question. Apparently in the 1950s, egg nog was popular enough to warrant some advertising, such as the ad below for Page’s Holiday Egg Nog that appeared in the Lorain Journal on the same day as the Bazley ad.
Mom always made egg nog part of our Thanksgiving while I was growing up. We had a little glass of it in the afternoon before the big feast. She would sprinkle a little ground nutmeg on each glass (and add a shot of rum to hers and Dad’s).

Friday, November 17, 2017

Lake Erie Oil Anniversary Ad – Nov. 12, 1946

Here's a handsome ad for the Lake Erie Oil Company, which was located on Ohio Route 254 near the railroad tracks. It appeared in the Lorain Journal on November 12, 1946 – 71 years ago this month – and celebrated the company's first anniversary at that location. It also promotes Fleet-Wing gasoline being good at 20 degrees below zero.

I first wrote about Lake Erie Oil back in 2012 (here). I also featured some of the firms’ large, vintage holiday ads for  Thanksgiving and Christmas.

It's interesting to think that the company's plant there provided Fleet-Wing gasoline (later, Sinclair) for local gas stations. The firm also produced fuel oil for heating purposes.

Anyway, it looks like Fleet-Wing Gasoline kinda got the marketing jump on Sohio and its Double Ice Guard guarantee.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Lorain Telephone Company Ad – Nov. 13, 1956

Here's an ad that hearkens back to the days when utility companies used advertising mascots to pass along important information to their customers. It helped put a friendly face on what were otherwise soulless corporations.

The above ad, which ran in the Lorain Journal on November 13, 1956, provided a handy tip to help its customers remember their new, longer telephone numbers.

Our telephone 3-digit prefix back then was AVenue 2 (282).

It sure was nice to able to tell just by recognizing a local telephone prefix where someone lived or a business was located. Nowadays – with landlines rapidly losing favor – a cell phone prefix can be associated with any location. They're harder to remember too.

The earliest appearance of the phone mascot so far that I can find has been from a December 1951 ad in the Lorain Sunday News. Our friend here has no arms, and is decked out in Scottish regalia – no doubt trying to appear "thrifty."

By 1956, he had sprouted arms (so he could dial himself?) and legs.
And by 1961, he had been redesigned (below) to be a little cuter.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Ford Plant Groundbreaking – Nov. 1956 Part 3

The groundbreaking ceremony for the new Ford Lorain Assembly Plant went off as planned on Wednesday, November 21, 1956, with Hayes B. Whittlesey manning one of the shovels. The above photo ran on the front page of the Lorain Journal that day.

The accompanying article written by Jack LaVriha noted, “A party of Lorain County business, civic and industrial leaders, public officials and representatives of families in the township braved a steady drizzle to be at the groundbreaking ceremony.

“Manning spades to turn over soil which became thoroughly wet by an all-night rain were James O. Wright, assistant manager of Ford Division; Ward Fulsom, general manufacturing manager of Ford Division, and Hayes B. Whittlesey, 80-year old Brownhelm Township farmer and member of a pioneer township family.”

In his speech at the luncheon following the ceremony, Thomas R. Reid, director of civic affairs for Ford Motor Company, stated that Ford believed in being a good corporate neighbor and citizen. Reid promised that in addition to “providing good jobs and the local purchasing power of a good payroll,” Ford Motor Company would assume its fair share of the community’s charity drives and local business contributions.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Ford Plant Groundbreaking – Nov. 1956 Part 2

On November 13, 1956, the Lorain Journal featured the above photo of the home of Hayes B. Whittlesey in its pages as a tie-in with the previous day’s account of Mr. Whittlesey’s planned participation in the groundbreaking ceremony of the new Ford plant.
Today the country road on which the house is located is no longer called Foster-Park Road. The new Route 2 constructed in the 1960s resulted in the rerouting of today’s Cooper Foster Park Road north of the highway. The portion of Cooper Foster Park Road south of the highway and east of Baumhart Road on which the Whittlesey farm is located is now called Whittlesey Road.

Courtesy Google Maps
The sign directs the motorist to head north on Baumhart
to access the eastern continuation of Cooper Foster Park
Here’s my shot of the former Hayes B. Whittlesey home from this past weekend (below).
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I almost didn’t recognize the house when I went to photograph it on Saturday morning. A Google Maps “drive-by” showed the house as it looked in 2008, still with its whitewashed appearance (below).