1911 Advertisements for Christmas Gifts

16-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Wednesday, December 6, 1911: Have my part of the dialogue well under way. You may think I’m smart, but I haven’t much to say. I’m commencing to get streaks of thinking what I’ll buy for Xmas presents. My pocketbook is limited so I’ll have to make a careful list beforehand.

Maybe Grandma thought about buying bracelets for her sisters. (Ad Source: A portion of a Merry Mason Company  advertisement in The Youth’s Companion, December 7, 1911)

Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

Grandma was memorizing a dialogue for a school “entertainment” that was to be held before the Christmas break.

Let’s see—Grandma probably needed to buy gifts for at least seven people: her mother, her father, her sister Ruth, her little brother Jimmie, her married sister Besse, her brother-in-law Curt, and her best friend Carrie Stout.  Whew, I can see how that it could be expensive.

How about slippers for brother-in-law Curt? (Ad source: Ladies Home Journal, December, 1911)

In many ways the young woman who wrote the diary seems very different from the elderly grandmother that I remember—but this is one place where I can really recognize my grandmother. She always worried about money and I can picture her carefully planning what she would purchase before she went shopping.

And, maybe a glass candle holder for Mother? (Ad source: Ladies Home Journal, December, 1911)

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