1915 Sun-Maid Raisin Ad

Source: Ladies Home Journal (November, 1915)
Source: Ladies Home Journal (November, 1915)

Raisins were used in many holiday recipes a hundred years ago. They were popular because “modern” technology enabled them to be produced inexpensively.  And, once produced, they were easy to transport to even the most remote locales.

People had more raisin choices back then: seeded (seeds extracted), seedless (made from seedless grapes), and cluster (on stems, not seeded).  Why would anyone would want the cluster variety?  Did people remove the seeds and stem them after they purchased the package? It must have been a real pain to get them into a form where they could actually be used.

36 thoughts on “1915 Sun-Maid Raisin Ad

  1. I wonder if the clustered ones were cheaper, since they were less processed and you actually got less raisins for your money?

  2. Do you have any raisin recipes? I have one from an Amish cookbook that has raisins in a vanilla custard pie. It could be an old recipe, but maybe it’s not.

  3. In Australia we can get raisins and golden raisins, sultanas and golden sultanas, muscatel clusters, seedless muscatels and currants, which aren’t grapes but can be used in the same way. I’ve never used the muscatels.

    1. In an average supermarket in the US, you can get raisins, golden raisins, and currants. I’ve never looked for raisins in the more upscale stores like Whole Foods so I don’t know if additional varieties might be available some places –but now I’m curious, and may have to check it out.

  4. I believe you can still buy the cluster raisins, one can use them with a cheese tray or fruit. The raisins with seeds aren’t bad at all to eat ,just a little crunchy.;)
    Enjoyed the information on food energy value.

    1. Interesting–I had no idea that cluster raisins were still available. I’m definitely are going to have to look for them. They sound like they’d make an interesting additional to a cheese/fruit tray.

  5. Raisins are a staple in my cooking, and I just checked my box of SunMaid raisins. That same lovely girl is on the package. It’s one of the few companies I know that hasn’t changed their primary logo. As for the raisins themselves, I stir them into oatmeal or other cereals, use them in cookies and cakes, love them in sour cream raisin pie, and even use them in some meat dishes. My favorite cookie has a short crust folded around ground, spiced raisins. And, my diabetic friends carry the small boxes in their purses or bags for a little shot of sugar when needed.

    1. It is amazing that they’ve kept the same logo for a hundred years. It sure is an enduring image. Raisins are a versatile food. The spiced raisin cookies sound awesome.

    1. I also was surprised that the advertisement glowingly touted the high number of calories in raisins. Some things have really, really changed over the past hundred years. 🙂

  6. I never knew raisens had so many calories! Back to an apple in my oatmeal when I’m cutting down calories. That or just eat a steak for breakfast. I’m noticing in my old books people eating steak for breaksfast.

  7. This brings back some memories! My father loved raisins and could never understand why I disliked them so much. (I don’t understand why, either!) Once when I was about five or six, I was at a birthday party and bit into what I thought was a chocolate chip cookie. But it was a raisin cookie and I couldn’t keep it in my mouth, let alone swallow it. So, as discreetly as possible, I took the bite out of my mouth and stuffed it between the cushions on the couch. To this day I feel guilty about not disposing of it properly!

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