Lots of families did it in the 50s and 60s and we were no exception. I remember sitting at the kitchen table and sticking our huge backlog of stamps in the books – rather crookedly, too.)
That's why the Kroger ad above promoting Top Value Stamps brought back a lot of memories. It ran in The Lorain Journal on March 27, 1957.
It even features one of my favorite advertising mascots: Toppie, the Top Value Stamp Elephant.
Toppie embodied the concept of Scottish thrift, with his Tam O'Shanter, as well as the Tartan pattern covering his pachyderm physique. Since elephants never forget, he was also there to remind people not to forget to shop where Top Value stamps are given out.
Toppie was popular enough in 1958 to star in his own comic book (below). Although it seems kind of cruel to show the gentle beast's trunk getting flattened by a steam roller, the accident was the plot device that drove the comic book story. Want to read it? Click here.)
I wonder whatever happened to it?
Anyway, here's a link to a great flickr set of Top Value Stamp Catalog images.