Monday, September 20, 2010

The Local News 1910

Edison advertises his talking machine in the Richmond Times Guardian of 1910. The ad is not nearly as elaborate as the one found in the Ladies Home Journal, etc. But it's similar in tone: it's the Mom who figures here. Edison thought Mothers were the ones who would bring the machines (or not) into the home. Talking machines retailed for about 40.00, a big chunk of change.

The Richmond-Times Guardian was the local paper and the Nicholsons read it and took clippings from it. From what I can see, it was an insubstantial little paper, aimed at women folk, where the local storekeepers advertised their specials of the week and where THE TOWN posted notices.

Any articles inside were 'filler' between ads. Now most the other ads were for patent medicines, the subject of two of my recent blogs.

If the Nicholsons were always fretting over colds (and Edith takes a 'nerve tonic' in 1910, for she is sick and sick at heart after losing a beau) it may have been a community quirk, judging by the iffy tonics advertised in the Richmond-Times Guardian (many from Brockville, Ontario companies). Dr Williams Pink Pills, revivifying tonic, eat well, sleep well, 50 cents a box by mail;Baby's Own tablets, this medicine cures all problems of babyhood, bowel, teething, etc.;Parmeli's Vegetable Pills, a mild purgative. (Reminds me I need to take my super anti-oxident greens today!)and Father Morrisey's Lung Tonic, Lydia Pinkham's Vegetable tonic (which I have written about extensively) on and on and on and on.
The Baby's Own pills do not claim to 'contain no opiates' as similar pills in the US did - because of their pure food law.

Other ads, well Daimler Auto took out one huge ad. But there was a notice in the social notes that Mr. Crombie had recently purchased an automobile and would be taking possession of it soon. Crombie was a wealthy Richmond merchant. The Nicholsons owed their mortgage on Tighsolas to him. In 1910 Richmond, as in other towns across North American, the wealthier men were all buying cars.

This is a story line in my book Flo in the City, about a girl coming of age in the pivotal 1910 era, based on the letters of

And of special interest to me, for my book, well, it seems that Mr. Wales (the first 'tycoon' to own a car in Richmond, was the one who sold material in the town. (So I have to change that in my book.) And there was another milliner in town Miss V. Goyette.