Ads From the November 3, 1951 New Yorker, continued
We continue our look at some of the advertisements from this issue of The New Yorker. To put the prices of goods and services in perspective: in 1951, a first class postage stamp cost three cents; a loaf of bread cost sixteen cents; the minimum wage was seventy five cents per hour and the average salary was $4,200 per year.
For The Men
Of course The New Yorker appealed to the well heeled man as well as the elegantly outfitted woman. (click on any ad to enlarge)
Freeman Shoes – Men’s shoes have not changed much in sixty years. If the Freeman Shoe is the footwear of the successful man, what is the footwear of the man who fails?
Viyella Shirts – Rhymes with Hi, Fella. Another item that would look as good today as it did decades ago. High end retailer Austin Reed currently owns the company.
Brooks Brothers – Not many people realize the venerable clothier has been in business since 1818. Note that Brooks Brothers sells the Viyella shirt.
Old Spice Shaving Cream and After Shave Lotion – Old Spice was a luxury brand?
Capital Airlines – The way the businessman travels. Plus he gets to walk on the airport apron to and from the airplane. Capital Airlines merged with United Airlines in 1961.
The Cincinnati Enquirer – What better way to have a New Yorker reader stop and look at your ad than to hire a New Yorker artist to draw a cartoon. Here the great Richard Taylor lets other advertisers know that The Cincinnati Enquirer has a high circulation so they should consider advertising in that newspaper.
Merrill, Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Beane – The brokerage firm that had been known most recently simply as Merrill Lynch in the last three decades, has returned to their full name of Merrill, Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith. On December 31, 1957 Mr. Beane was dropped from the company name and Winthrop Smith, the man who was running Merrill Lynch since 1940, put his name in Beane’s place.
Hamilton Watches – Remember when the USA produced great wristwatches like Hamilton, Bulova and Waltham?
Minnox III Camera / Alexander Shields – Alexander Shields was a store that catered to men who cared more about style rather than fashion. A camera that weighs only two ounces? What will they think of next.
Empire Races at Jamaica – Horse racing in New York would regularly draw 35,000 people daily. The decline of the “Sport of Kings” is sad.
Moore-McCormack Lines – By sea via glamorous ocean liners was the way the wealthy traveled to other countries. Today, who could take the time for a 38 day cruise as advertised above?
Buick Special – Power and Performance with Dynaflow Drive. I’m sold.
Stromberg-Carlson – A combination television, radio and phonograph. The company was better known for its telephones and switching equipment.
Du Mont Television – There were an estimated 13 million television sets in the United States in 1951. The cost of a set could run from $300 – $500. Not only did Du Mont manufacture television sets, they had their own television network which lasted until 1956.
Virginia Rounds Cigarettes by Benson & Hedges – Finally the most surprising thing about this issue of The New Yorker is that there were very few cigarette ads. The number of people who smoked in the middle of the twentieth century comprised a much larger percentage than today. Yet as I pointed out in the first part of this article, the number of advertisements for liquor far outnumbered any other sort of advertising.