My mum Rene (Alice Irene Flitney née Harding) died in 1999. When my brother, sister and I went through her things we found an envelope full of old newspaper clippings and other bits and pieces. We looked through the papers and put the envelope away, but those yellowing pieces of paper keep whispering of half-forgotten times and places. Places like Butlers Cross, Stoke Mandeville, Aylesbury, West Wycombe, Little Kimble, Wendover, Ellesborough, Southcourt and Princes Risborough.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Sepia Saturday 263 : Old adverts, horses, carts and strange products.

As a collector of and dealer (now retired) in vintage children’s books and ephemera I assumed this would be an easy challenge. Wrong! I found lots of old adverts but few that filled the brief, hence I've gone with the best I could find.


The first one comes from the back cover of The Band of Hope Annual published in 1910. The Band of Hope was a temperance organisation for working-class children, founded in Leeds in 1847. All members took a pledge of abstinence, and meetings usually began with the recitation of a catchy little pledge that began - I promise here by grace divine to drink no spirits, ale or wine.      

Published by S. W. Partridge
The Band of Hope Annual

There are several interesting adverts in the annual, including one for Dr. Hommel’s Haematogen Nerve Tonic (highly recommended by thousands of doctors – beware of worthless imitations) and another for Quaker Oats (millions of children eat Quaker Oats every day).  But the one that really caught my attention was this one for Wood Milne Rubber Heels – the boy in the picture looks as though he’s enjoying the beating from his Grandpa – and why not - Wood Milne Rubber Heels relieve shock and save nerve jar!

Advertisement for Wood-Milne Rubber Heels



I had to take a second look at the following image to work out just what the dog has in its mouth. I’m not sure this advert would persuade me to purchase Sphere oval-octo suspenders.  I can’t think of anything more embarrassing than having the band stop playing while I search for a dropped suspender. I prefer my undergarments to be firmly fixed thank you, and by the way - if Sphere never fails why is my suspender on the floor?

The image is not signed, but I suspect it could be by G. E. Studdy as the dog looks very much like Bonzo. 

Advert found in Weldon's Ladies Journal December 1931
Advert found in Weldon's Ladies' Journal December 1931.


Bonzo by G E Studdy
G.E Studdy's Bonzo looking remarkably like the dog in the previous advert.



I struggled to find any adverts for carts and only one with a picture of a horse – this from Photo World published in August, 1945. 

In Turf accountancy, demand for an account with William Hill meant closing our books to new accounts, in war-time, owing to shortage of staff. Happily the position is changed and this is a personal invitation to you to enrol with William Hill.
William Hill Park Lane 1938 Advertisement
William Hill (Park Lane) Ltd

Start as a client - you'll FINISH as a friend.

That’s me finished, but you’ll find lots more vintage adverts over at
Sepia Saturday 



39 comments:

  1. Hi Barbara, All interesting stuff.
    What better to do on a wet Tuesday than dream of suspenders and..................
    I really must pull my socks up!

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    1. I thought that might tickle your fancy! Thanks for commenting John, it means a lot.

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  2. I love old advertisements and I'm glad I stopped by. Happiest of New Years to you and yours and may your undergarments stay firmly in place. :)

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    1. Hello Eve, I’m glad you stopped by too. My undergarments are quite secure thank you, but I am getting a little elderly so I do have to check from time to time! Happy New Year, Barbara xx

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  3. The cover of the vintage book is so appealing and I had to smile at the suspenders advert.

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    1. Hi Sue, glad you enjoy it. Thanks so much for your comment, Barbara

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  4. What a fun collection of ads. Grandpa beating the kid with his shoe would pass for child abuse today. As far as personal items like garters and suspenders go, today nothing is too personal to advertise.

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    1. Hello Wendy, everything is upside down now to how it used to be. Beating children was perfectly acceptable but showing ones under things was not. It’s a crazy world. Thanks for stopping by.

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  5. It all makes perfect sense now - I could only see two of your images on my iMac, but on my iPad and my husband’s PC they are clear and bright. I wonder if anyone else had this problem. A very enjoyable post.

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    1. How very odd, I do hope it’s not a problem for anyone else. I can understand why you were confused it can't have made any sense with missing pictures. Thanks very much for all your help, Barbara.

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  6. I did enjoy the spenders ad and the likeness to the dog in the second ad is uncanny!

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  7. I especially like the rubber heels ad.

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  8. Suspenders, garters - I remember them well. I was just entering the working world when mini-skirts became the rage, but pantyhose had not yet caught up with the fashion. Trying to keep those garters & the tops of our nylons covered up when we sat down in those mini-skirts was a real challenge!

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. When I left school I used to cycle to work wearing – you guessed it – mini skirts. I can only image the sight I made peddling along trying to hold the skirt down just far enough to cover the top of my stockings. It was a case of holding the handlebars with one hand while pulling first on one side of the skirt and then the other. Trousers were not really the thing for a young woman in the 60s. It was all mini skirts, back combed hair and thick black make-up around the eyes – very Dusty Springfield.

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  9. Ah...the perfect match with the rubber heels. Wonderful.

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  10. You match the brief to perfection. What a collection you have. Some wonderful illustrations. (Which, by the way Marilyn, all appeared perfectly on my iMac)

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    1. Praise indeed, thank you Alan. I'm happy to hear the post worked OK on your iMac – I would have no idea what to do if it didn’t.

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  11. You have reminded me that I have several old ladies journals that have wonderful advertisements in them. My challenge early on was scanning the fine pages and getting shadowing from what was on the reverse side of the page. I'll have to revisit that project. Thanks for the inspiration!

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    1. Gosh, I haven’t done anything as scientific as that (as you can probably tell), I’ve simply photographed them, warts and all. Thinking about it, I agree it’s a good idea to scan magazines but not so easy with books. I would be afraid of breaking the spines. Thanks very much for your visit. Barbara.

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  12. What DOES that first dog have in his mouth?

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    1. Hi Deb, it’s not all that easy to see in the image, but it’s actually a suspender (the bit that attaches the top of a stocking to a garter belt or corset).

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  13. Love your collection of old advertisements and the interesting commentary with them.

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  14. An enjoyable post. My grandmother was in the Australian Temperance Society and kept her promise to abstain from alcohol. They always seemed to use such bright colours and interesting drawings.

    I love the rubber heels advertisement too!

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  15. The book in this post is really interesting and the cover is certainly bright, so I agree with you on that. I think our grandparents had a lot of ‘moral fibre’ and when they decided on something, they stuck to it.
    Glad you enjoyed the ads. Barbara.

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  16. Well done on this post Barbara. What a beautiful horse Nearco was and shame a few children cannot have a shoe across their backsides!

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    1. Hello Sister, thank you for your always encouraging words. Nearco was a magnificent beast and very successful according to the Internet. Your comment about the shoe made me smile and made me think of the old saying about sparing the rod and spoiling the child.

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  17. Cannot imagine the little boy - who looks like Pinochio to me - enjoyed his spanking because it was done with a wonderful shoe! What an odd way to advertise a heel.

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    1. Perhaps it is Pinochio and not a little boy at all – that could explain why he’s smiling. :-)

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  18. I suppose the rubber soles hurt less than a leather belt? Still not smiling time to my mind. The cover on The Band of Hope Annual is beautiful. The colors look bright even after all these years.

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    1. Hello Nancy, I'm sure that’s what we are supposed to think, but I don’t believe it for a second. I'm happy to say I've never been hit with either a belt or a shoe, but I'm willing to bet they both hurt!

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  19. A lot of great photos to contribute. I doubt the little boy is glad he is getting a spanking with a shoe, but it is a cartoon.

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    1. I think you might be right there, but as you say it is a cartoon.

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  20. I had trouble getting past the memories of suspenders. I think they should give a Nobel Prize to the person who invented Knee Hi s. From Supsenders to pantyhose to Knee His. A good post.

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    1. Thanks for making me smile! I’ve given up on suspenders, pantyhose and knee-highs in preference for a nice pair of woolly socks!

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I really appreciate your comment. Thank you!
Barbara x

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