Merry Christmas from 1918

I don’t know about you, but this year’s Christmas shopping was pretty easy for us here at Forgotten Stories; the beauty of just shopping on the internet you know. But, we are aware that some did not have quite as easy a time, and that some of you are probably still shopping. So were the folks back in 1918, whose newspapers carried these advertisements on December 23:

Player Piano

Perhaps $495 for a player piano is a bit out of your budget, even at $25 monthly. J.T. Hinton’s store in Paris, Kentucky, offers some more affordable options:

JT - Hinton - Paris, KY

That’s right friends, not only can you get a new Bissell vacuum cleaner, but you can pick up a brass bed, which is “just the one you want for someone’s Christmas gift.” Now take a look at this young lady, who we suspect received a brass bed last year:

La France Shoes - 2

Why is she so happy, you ask? Well, she got a new pair of shoes for Christmas, and not just any shoes, she received La France kid leather shoes from Berberich’s in Washington D.C., which shows that her husband truly cares:

La France Shoes-1

There were some other big ticket items available for Christmas that year, including Edison’s $3,000,000 phonograph, because purportedly Thomas Alva spent some $3,000,000 developing the thing. Fortunately, it was available at something less than $3,000,000:

Edison - NY World

Then of course there was Wallace J. Smalley, of 517 S. Third Street, Louisville, Kentucky. According to Dr. Smalley, for Christmas there is “nothing more useful or suitable than a pair of SMALLEY GLASSES.”

Smalley Eyeglasses - Lexington KY

The good Dr. Smalley, optometrist and optician, put in 14 hour days as the advertisement shows, so we hope he took a day off for the holiday. Finally, it shouldn’t be forgotten that in December, 1918 the First World War had only been over for a month, and industry was rapidly switching back to peacetime production, as our friends at the Buick dealership in Columbia, Missouri reminded us:


A just in case you could drive the Buick yourself, and wanted to provide your chauffeur with some fancy new duds, Brill Brothers in Manhattan had just the thing, a Christmas sale on the full kit and caboodle:


From Forgotten Stories, a Merry Christmas to you all!

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