In this Easter-themed Hart’s ad, there’s the promotional incentive of a 27 inch Easter Bunny doll, free with any purchase of $5.95 or more.
Wednesday, March 31, 2021
Tuesday, March 30, 2021
Do you know the name of the very first pre-sweetened breakfast cereal?
Surprisingly, it wasn’t created by Kellogg’s, General Mills or Post. And you won’t find it on the cereal shelves at your local grocery store any more either. It’s long gone.
It’s generally accepted by cereal historians that the first one that was ‘pre-sugared’ was a regional product called Ranger Joe Wheat Honnies. It was a puffed wheat cereal, lacquered with honey and corn syrup. It was a big hit with kids and sales really took off in the 1940s.
You can read about its history here.
Post Cereals must have been paying attention, because it introduced its own sugar-coated puffed wheat cereal, Sugar Crisp, in 1949. (Click here to visit my posts on Sugar Crisp and all the Post Cereals.)
Meanwhile, Ranger Joe Wheat Honnies was sold to Nabisco, who renamed it slightly to Wheat Honeys and rolled it out nationally along with a sister product, Rice Honeys.
Below is the introductory ad for both products that appeared in the Lorain Journal on March 1, 1956.
Monday, March 29, 2021
Mention ‘Gold Circle’ to a newer Lorain County resident, and they’ll probably give you a blank stare. But many of us who grew up in this area in the 60s and 70s remember this discount department store well from the outlet located across from Midway Mall.
It was fifty years ago this month that the Gold Circle there opened. Here’s a small article making the announcement that appeared in the Lorain Journal on March 1, 1971.
Friday, March 26, 2021
Earlier this month, I devoted several posts to the story of Lorain’s pioneer aviator Bill Long and his airports. The series culminated with the account of his passing in early February 1971, and the auction of personal effects that followed.
About a month after Long's death, the news of his will – and the unexpected financial windfall for a close friend – hit the front page of the Journal. Read all about it in this story that appeared on March 3, 1971. It’s a great story. (It kind of reminds me of when the bearded Howard Hughes passed away a few years later, and for a while it seemed that he had left $156 million to a gas station owner.)
Thursday, March 25, 2021
Here’s another ad that didn’t quite make it onto the blog last month. It’s for the Grand Opening of Vermilion’s brand-new A&P grocery store, and it ran in the Lorain Journal sixty years ago on Feb. 28, 1961.
The A&P was located in the South Shore Shopping Center.
The ad is kind of funny, with the large clip art of a woman’s face (not unlike the one emblazoned on the Cavalier China storefront) and the odd illustration of the man, which looks like it was created on an Etch A Sketch.
A&P has been a favorite topic on this blog. It’s still incredible to me after all these years that the mighty A&P chain is no more.
My mother dragged my siblings and me to at the Lorain Plaza A&P many times back in the 1960s. I still remember one shopping trip during which a friendly cashier commented on my ‘chubby cheeks’ and gave one a good pinch. (Today the same thing would probably result in a lawsuit and extended coverage on social media.)
A&P hung on in Canada for a while, right into the 2000s. For many years the one in Niagara Falls (now it’s a Metro store) was our final shopping stop before heading back over the border to the good old U.S.A. I would fill the car trunk with all our Canadian favorites: pea-meal bacon, Billy Bee honey, Kraft Peanut Butter, Tim Horton coffee, etc. (The U. S. border agent peeked in our trunk once and said, “What, did you go to Canada just to buy groceries?”)
Wednesday, March 24, 2021
I first wrote about how Lawson’s dallied with opening their own restaurants back here. Here’s a promotional postcard showing an unnamed location.Dutch Loaf sandwiches with a glass of "Big O" Orange Juice to wash it down, it looks like they had higher culinary aspirations with those char-broiled steak dinners mentioned in the Journal ads.
Tuesday, March 23, 2021
Mention the name “Killer Crossing” to some Lorainites, and they’ll probably think of the longtime deadly railroad crossing at Beaver Park.
But for a while, there was another “Killer Crossing.” Although it may be hard to believe, where Oak Point Road crosses State Route 2 was once an at-grade crossing. That is, there was no bridge over the limited highway, and you had to skedaddle across the four-lane highway like your life depended on it – and it did.
Read all about the concerns being raised fifty years ago this month in this article from the Sunday Journal of March 14, 1971. It was written by Charles Gray, Staff Writer.
The article mentions the nearby “Bridge to Nowhere,” (featured on the blog back here).
The name of the limited access highway (today's SR 2) apparently still wasn’t finalized in 1971, as it is referred to as I-90 in the article, as well as ‘relocated State 2 and the Lake Erie Freeway.’
Be sure to visit this 2015 post about the Oak Point Road/State Route 2 interchange, with a great vintage photo of the bridge under construction in 1976 courtesy of Dale Rosenkranz.
Monday, March 22, 2021
Last Thursday, D-Day – in Lorain, that means Demolition Day – finally came for the former Walter Frey Funeral Home on West Erie.
(It was kind of sneaky that the usual tell-tale fence around the property indicating eminent destruction never appeared before the take-down started.)
The demolition is kind of sad. The house was both a link to the past, as the residence of George Wickens, as well as the home of a well-known funeral business that we all probably visited at some time in our lives.
But in case someone in the far-off future ever wonders what was once there (on what will surely still be a vacant lot), here’s an ample sample of images of it from down through the years.
|Undated postcard from when the house was George Wickens’ residence|