My holiday baking has begun! I bought some Baker’s Chocolate last week. Then yesterday I came across this ad for Baker’s Chocolate in a 1921 cookbook – and am in awe that this product has been around for more than 240 years (241 years to be exact).
Advertisements provide a window into the culture (or at least an idealized culture) of the times. This advertisement for White House Coffee makes me glad that I live in 2021 instead of 1921. The role of women was definitely different a hundred years ago.
I am intrigued by this 1921 advertisement. The 1920’s were a time of rapid change, and schools were becoming larger with some even having school lunch rooms or cafeterias. However, I’m uncertain that it can be considered progress when more and more school lunch rooms were selling Lowney’s Almond Milk Chocolate Bars.
Church cookbooks, both a hundred years ago and now, often contain advertisements from local businesses. The ads can help defray the cost of producing the cookbook, and can increase profits if the cookbook is sold as a fundraiser.
These advertisements are often very basic – yet I enjoy looking at them. They provide insights into the community and the times. For example, these advertisements from a 1921 Massachusetts church cookbook compiled by ladies of West Concord Union Church (Why are they called “ladies” rather than “women”? And, though perhaps it is obvious given the year, why did just “ladies” compile the cookbook rather than church “members”?) suggest that many homes regularly purchased ice (For an ice box?), that fresh fish was readily available, and that the area was fairly rural.
Ever see an ad for a product that sounds awful? Well this is one of those times. This hundred-year-old ad does not make me want to buy powdered dehydrated oysters and clams. Somehow I’m guessing that this product has not stood the test of time.
This 1921 ad works for me. I’m not a fan of evaporated milk, but I’m already trying to think of recipes that call for evaporated milk – pumpkin pie . . . what else? According to Wikipedia, Carnation first used the milk “from contented cows” slogan in 1907 – and continued to use it for many decides.
It’s always fun to read old advertisements. Both then and now ad writers knew how to promote products in ways that would increase sales. The slogan used in a 1921 Fleischmann Yeast advertisement, “Eat More Bread” doesn’t quite work for me, but maybe it sold yeast back in the day.