I’m often fascinated by even the simplest hundred-year-old advertisements. For example, this advertisement for Heinz Spaghetti is so basic –yet it provides many insights into the use of commercially prepared foods, ‘international cuisine’, and cooking methods back then.
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.
19-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today:
Friday, December 25, 1914: << no entry>>
Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:
Since Grandma didn’t write anything a hundred years ago today, I’ll share a 1914, Christmas-themed advertisement for Necco Wafers.
It’s always fun to come across an ad in an old magazine for a product that still available. I did a little research on Necco wafers and was stunned to discover that they’ve been around for 167 years. According to Wikipedia:
Necco Wafers date back to 1847. Oliver Chase, an English immigrant, invented a lozenge cutting machine with which he produced the wafers. At the time of the Civil War, these were called “hub wafers” and were carried by Union soldiers. In 1901, Chase and Company merged with two other companies to incorporate the New England Confectionery Company. By 1912 the wafers were being advertised as “Necco Wafers”, a name they still carry today.
During World War II the United States government ordered Necco to produce its wafers for soldiers overseas. As a result of this action, Necco saw its sales of the wafers peak. Upon returning home, many former soldiers became faithful customers who continued to buy the wafers.