Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Yes-Yes, Virginia, Those Caramel Cookies Existed

It’s supposed to be Girl Scout Cookie season, although I have yet to be ambushed by any of the pint-sized cookie entrepreneurs outside my local grocery store.
When I’m not suffering from empty-wallet syndrome, I usually buy a box of the Samoas® – those toasted coconut-covered delicacies – although sometimes they seem to be called Caramel deLites®.

Was the cookie’s renaming due to some sort of concern of disrespect towards the friendly Samoans? No, the two different names has something to do with which regional bakery produced the cookies, according to this blog.

Anyway, buying a box of these coconut-and-chocolate cookies always reminds me about a similar cookie that my mother used to buy when we were kids. The cookie was called a Yes Yes.

Unfortunately, no one I know has ever heard of them.

I would even describe the box the cookies came in (it had little palm trees on it). But still, nobody remembered them.

I eventually Googled these Yes Yes cookies, and found that there were others – on the website – who fondly remembered them too. Click here to read their comments.

But it wasn’t until recently when I had a free trial subscription to that I found a small graphic of the Yes Yes box. It was part of a grocery store ad in the Sioux Falls, South Dakota Argus Leader in January 1964.

Here’s another rendering of the box (below). This illustration ran as part of a Woolworth’s ad in the October 7, 1964 edition of the Minneapolis Star.

At last - confirmation that my memory was not playing tricks on me (at least this time). 
Anyway, there was yet another cookie out there that was similar to Yes Yes. They were called Yum Yums, and were baked by Sunshine Biscuits.
Here's that box (circa 1970s), courtesy of Pinterest. No palm trees, but the typography is kinda cool.

Neither Yes Yes nor Yum Yum cookies are around today. 
Dutch Maid seems to have gone out of business. (Lil Dutch Maid is a different cookie company.) Sunshine Biscuits was bought out by Keebler, which today is part of Kellogg’s.
But although Yum Yums are not to be found on your grocer’s shelves, Ernie the Keebler Elf must have stashed the recipe in his hollow tree. Today Keebler makes their own version of the cookie.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Open Hearth Era Begins at National Tube – Jan. 26, 1909

Here’s a neat article from 60 years ago commemorating an event that took place at National Tube Division, Lorain Works, 50 years before that.

The article is about the first heat poured from the new No. 1 furnace at National Tube on January 26, 1909. As the article noted, it was the beginning of the era of open hearth steel production at the plant.

Read all about it in the article below, which appeared on the front page of the January 26, 1959 Lorain Journal.

I posted a great 1955 article about National Tube and the 60th anniversary of Lorain’s steel industry back here in 2012. The comments posted by readers about that article were great. 

Monday, January 14, 2019

Flame Restaurant Grand Opening – Jan. 9, 1969

Here’s an ad for an eatery that older Lorainites might remember: the Flame Restaurant. The cafeteria-style restaurant was holding its Grand Opening back in January 1969 – 50 years ago this month – when this ad appeared in the Journal on the ninth.

It looks like the Flame had a nice niche, as the “first and only area ‘cafeteria-style’ restaurant featuring broiled steaks.”

As I mentioned in this 2012 post, the Flame succeeded the Muth Cafeteria Restaurant at that Fourth and Broadway location.

Here’s the vintage photo of the Flame from that post.

I've mentioned that I was in there at least once, picking up a cup of coffee for Mr. Visci during one of our late 60s trumpet lesson sessions.

Anyway, cafeterias seem to have mostly gone away in the 2000s, except for their established presence in schools and hospitals. But there’s still a cafeteria-style restaurant in our area if you have a hankering to relive that experience of sliding a plastic tray down a line as you select your mealtime morsels: Cleveland’s Sokolowski's University Inn.

Click here to read a great article about it. It’s been a few years since I ate there (I combined it with a visit to the Christmas Story House nearby), but I do remember the great rice pudding. There was also a piano player providing dinner music.

Here’s the restaurant’s website.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Peppy the Wise Potato Chip Owl Gets Pepped Up

Peppy as he looked back in the late 1950s when he was introduced
In yesterday's post about Wise Potato Chips, I mentioned that Peppy, the owl mascot, is semi-retired.

That's because even though he's currently not on the package, he's still around. Unfortunately, like many advertising mascots that have been around a long time, he's been regressed to a younger, "hipper" version. 
A quick stroll around the internet reveals that this new Peppy can found roosting all over the place.
Here he is on some window signage.

A costumed Peppy also makes personal appearances for Wise Snacks, wearing his "cool" baseball cap on backwards. (At least the cap covers up the un-owl-like mohawk.)
Peppy also shows up on some web ads.

Peppy was even made into a special nodder (or bobble-head if you prefer) that was a tie-in with a promotion for Major League Baseball's Mets. It's quite nice, actually.

Let's hope that when Wise Snacks celebrates its 100th Anniversary in 2021, the real Peppy is restored to his rightful place on the potato chip bag.
Interestingly, Peppy was briefly replaced in the mid-80s with a different, more generic, owl. This feathery, bespectacled impostor was supposed to be Peppy, but we all knew better.

This version of Peppy was even made into a doll. I wouldn't be surprised if the owl doll came first, and the logo was based on it.

Happily, the original Peppy was bag on the bags by the 1990s.

Hey, I just remembered I had these: vintage Wise Potato Chip plastic soda bottle caps, featuring Peppy!
Ah, the good old days – when pop came in glass returnable bottles. And since we didn't guzzle pop back then, it was necessary to put a cap on the bottle to keep it nice and fizzy for next time. Fortunately, Wise issued these Peppy promotional caps to remind you to eat some thirst-provoking salty chips!

Thursday, January 10, 2019

1957 Wise Potato Chips Recipe Book

Anyone who reads this blog knows I’m a big fan of vintage advertising mascots. So it probably isn’t a surprise that I like Peppy, the wise old owl that used to be featured on the front of the Wise Potato Chip bags and in its advertising.

That's him above in a Wise newspaper ad that ran in national newspapers in November 1959. Here's another newspaper ad (below), from July 1962.

Peppy has been semi-retired from the bags for a while now, although a closeup of his eye is now the symbol of the company. But in Peppy’s heyday, he was the star of a recipe book put out by the Wise Potato Chip Company that is copyrighted 1957.

The book is a lot of fun to look at. Besides the unusual recipes featuring ground up Wise potato chips as one of the ingredients, the book features plenty of illustrations of Peppy engaged in various activities related to food preparation (a sample is shown below).

Here are a few of the recipes.
And here’s that intriguing meat loaf recipe (called 'beef loaf' here) that I mentioned yesterday. 
Sooner or later, I’ll make this thing and post a photo of it, along with a review. If it’s good, it might even replace my other retro recipe, which is from a 1950s Quaker Oats container.
The Wise recipe book has other interesting things in it besides the recipes. There’s a nice color photo of the Wise Potato Chip bag circa 1957 on the back cover.
Here’s how the same bag looks today. While the design is nice, it needs Peppy to pep it up a bit.
On the inside back cover, there's a nice rendering of the plant in Berwick, Pennsylvania where the snacks were (and still are) produced today.
For comparison, here’s a Google Maps aerial view. 
Although more than sixty years have passed since the publication of the recipe book, most of the original factory buildings shown in the rendering are still recognizable in the aerial photo. 
But it looks like the original office building (seen at the far left in the 1957 rendering) is kinda hemmed in these days, thanks to various additions over the years.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Central Bank Ad – January 1, 1969

Although the print ads for many banks these days are fairly stodgy and humorless, that wasn’t the case 50 years ago. That’s when the ad above for Lorain’s Central Security National Bank ran in the Lorain Journal’s January 1, 1969 edition.

As you can see, the stylized ‘wise old owl’ (with specs perched on his beak) is sitting right on the Central Bank Logo.

Central Bank seems to be getting a lot of exposure on this blog lately. I ran several vintage ads for its Christmas Club last month. And over the years, I’ve devoted posts to its Broadway location, its innovative 1952 drive-through, the Grand Opening of its Colorado Avenue branch, its Avon branch, and the bank's roots as the Penfield Avenue Bank.

Anyway, the wise old owl cliché is still going strong in the 2000s. Need proof? Watch the YouTube compilation below.

Hey, that video doesn't include the funny owl voiced by Norm McDonald in the America’s Best commercials !
I still wish Wise Potato Chips would bring back Peppy, their owl mascot (below).

I email the company every couple of years to make my case for Peppy's comeback on the packaging, but have yet to get a reply!

Hey, speaking of Wise Potato Chips, how would you like a meat loaf recipe that uses that particular salty snack as an ingredient? Intrigued? Then stop back here next time (and pick up some Wise Potato Chips so you'll be ready).

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

The Gull Motel: No More Vacancies

The Gull Motel in happier days
The view on Sunday
It was a little sad to read in the Sandusky Register over the weekend that the Gull Motel in Huron is in the process of being sold to Valley Ford, which is located right next door. Apparently acquiring the motel property would give the cramped Ford dealership a little elbow room. The dealership is already parking some of its inventory in the shuttered motel’s parking lot.

It’s not a done deal yet, but it's very close. You can read all about it here on the Sandusky Register website.

I first wrote about the Gull Motel back in 2013 here, and even interviewed the owner.

The Gull Motel was a familiar and welcome sight to many U. S. Route 6 travelers during the 1960s and 70s. The motel’s classic sign was one of those things we watched for as we passed through Huron on the way to Cedar Point.

Although the Ohio Turnpike and State Route 2 had siphoned off much of the through traffic, in recent years the motel was still an economical alternative to the national chains.

It always makes me feel a little wistful when yet another bit of Roadside Americana in our area disappears. The loss of the Gull Motel is not surprising though; perhaps it's a little amazing that the little motel dating back to the early 1960s lasted this long.

Huron has been a regular topic on this blog since its beginning.

I’ve written about the Twine House; the Showboat; Huron’s Main Street; Huron’s Saloon DaysCorky’s Restaurant and Motel; Huron’s street signs; the Huron Harbor Lighthouse; the Frostop Drive-in (with its large rotating root beer mug); and Wileswood Country Store.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Beachcomber Motel Changes Hands – Jan. 1969

It’s hard to believe that the Erieview Motel was torn down back in April 2017. The long-awaited demolition just doesn’t seem that long ago to me. I guess time flies when you’re having fun watching Lorain tear down old buildings.

But what’s even harder to believe is that the motel – back when it was still known as the Beachcomber – once had a famous owner: George Steinbrenner.

Read all about it in the article below, which appeared on the front page of the Lorain Journal back on December 30, 1968. George Steinbrenner and Lorain Insurance agent William Rieth Jr. bought the building from Arthur Goldstein, who was the retired owner of Lorain’s Style Center. The new owners officially took over the property on January 1, 1969.

Four years later, Steinbrenner and a group of investors would buy the New York Yankees. Unfortunately, the Beachcomber would still come to an eventual seedy end, despite its high-profile ownership.
At least the photo in the Journal article revealed that the motel once had a huge Quality Courts sign.

Courtesy Striderv Flickr page

Friday, January 4, 2019

Kline’s – 1959 Happy New Year Ad

Here’s one final Happy New Year-themed ad to finish out the week. It’s for Kline’s, one of the mainstays of Downtown Lorain for 61 years.

This ad makes me feel sentimental.
For one thing, Kline’s was important to my family. Grandma Brady supported herself by working there as a sales clerk for decades, becoming good friends with the store manager (Ben Weintraub) and his wife. The Weintraubs were very good to her and our family.

I’ve written a lot about Kline’s on this blog. I did a multi-part series on the store’s history beginning (here). I wrote about the store’s unique Sixth Street entrance (here) as well as the whole Gould block (here). And there are a few posts featuring various Kline’s ads (such as these Christmas ones) as well.

Memories of Kline’s still persist in our family. Over the recent holidays, my mother remembered that for one Christmas, Grandma Brady had brought home a huge roll of wrapping paper from Kline's for my parents. Mom laughed as she recalled that Dad wrapped every single present going under the Brady tree with that same wrapping paper.

Anyway, the ad also makes me feel sentimental because I was born in 1959. It seems like a long time ago.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Louie’s Bar – 1947 Happy New Year Ad

Here’s a nice quarter-page ad for Louie’s Bar wishing all of his patrons a Happy New Year. The seasonal advertisement featuring owners Louie and Julia Kosa ran in the Lorain Journal on December 30, 1946.

I like the tradition during the 1940s and 50s in which Lorain businesses took out ads which included photographs of the owners. It was a nice touch to see the people behind the company.

From information gleaned from Lorain City Directories, it appears that Julia Kosa had been a waitress at an establishment run by Charles DeBracy located at 1806 E. 28th Street since the early 1940s. By the time of the 1947 edition of the directory, Louie’s Bar had taken over the location. Charles DeBracy then moved over to the Twenty-two Hundred Bar at 2201 E. 28th Street, which he operated with Frank Ursic.

A slight change of address for Louie’s Bar from 1806 E. 28th to 1802 E. 28th occurred around the time of the 1950 city directory. The Kosas continued to operate their bar at that address until the mid-1950s, when Louie’s was replaced by the City Bar in the directory listings.

At some point, the Kosas relocated to Florida, where they owned and operated an apartment complex in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea.

Julia Rosa passed away in October 2000.

So what does the E. 28th Street city block where Louie’s Bar was located look like today?

Assuming that the 1950s numerical addresses correspond to the same buildings today, here is where Louie’s was located on the south side of E. 28th Street near its intersection with Pearl Avenue, directly across from the National Tube offices.
Today, Louie’s original 1806 E. 28th Street location is home to Three Star Restaurant (seen on the left with the two signs above the door).

And for decades, Louie's later 1802 E. 28th Street address has been associated with City Bar (located in the smaller building on the right).

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

First Babies of 1959 & 1969

Well, we know that my older brother was Lorain’s First Baby of 1958. So who was the First Baby of 1959?
That honor went to Kimberly Jo Saltzman, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Richard Saltzman. Here’s the article that appeared on the front page of the Journal on January 2, 1959. It’s nice that the last baby of 1958 – Jean Marie Baker – made it into the photo too, along with her mother, Mrs. John E. Baker.

And here is the obligatory Journal spread showing all the goodies that Kimberly and her parents received from the local merchants, which included Kline’s, Kutza Pharmacy, Henry’s Food Center, Ideal Dairy, Sylvester Drugs, Michaels Studio and Ohio Edison. Hey, even Brady’s Restaurant got into the act.
By the way, while preparing this post, I noticed that the address of the Saltzmans in 1959 – 901 Root Road in Lorain – is that of a fine, old landmark home that is obviously one of the oldest in that area. 
November 2016 View
But what about Lorain's first Baby of 1969 – who is experiencing his/her 50th Birthday today?
That honor went to Laura Marie Kachure. You can read all about her in the article below, which appeared on the front page of the Journal on January 2, 1969. 
The article also includes the names of the First Babies of 1969 for Erie County and Elyria. 
Judging from the article's roll call of bouncing babies, it must have been a busy night at St. Joseph Hospital, Good Samaritan Hospital in Sandusky, Amherst Hospital, Elyria Memorial and Sandusky Providence.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Happy New Year!

Well, it’s a brand New Year, and I hope that 2019 is a happy one for all my readers and friends.

I’d like to wish a Happy Birthday to my older brother, Ken, who as you might remember was Lorain’s First Baby of 1958 (which I wrote about here and here).

The photo at the top of this post is Ken celebrating his third birthday in 1961. That’s our Grandpa Bumke seated next to him at the Brady dinner table, examining his party hat as Birthday Boy Ken looks on. (Looks like a Sam Houston chocolate cake – Mom’s specialty and Dad’s favorite – in front of Ken.)
Anyway, what’s interesting is that the Lorain Journal decided to follow up on the First Baby of 1958 with a front page article on January first the following year. So Ken got to enjoy his celebrity a little bit longer.

And here’s the front page of the January 1, 1959 Lorain Journal, with a nice big photo of Ken, “Lorain’s Space Age Baby,” playing with a snowman light-up.

It’s a very cute article by Marlene Berencsi. In it, she humorously compares Ken's "orbit around the Edward J. Brady home” to that of the U. S. Atlas satellite in the news at that time. 
But what about the first baby of 1959? Or 1969 for that matter? You’ll just have to toddle back here tomorrow to find out!