Author Topic: Odd and Fun Things from the Past  (Read 400 times)

Offline AAAndrew

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Odd and Fun Things from the Past
« on: July 20, 2018, 10:11:51 AM »
As some of you are aware, I spend a fair amount of my limited free time looking at old books, catalogs, city directories, etc... for my research into the history of the US steel pen industry. https://thesteelpen.com/

Well, sometimes I come across funny things, like advertisements or newspaper articles that just catch my eye. I figured some of you are interested in old things, and even a few of you have a sense of humor as twisted as mine, so I thought I might share a few things from time to time.

Here's my first. It's an ad from 1884 for the first paddle and ball game.

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Offline AAAndrew

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Re: Odd and Fun Things from the Past
« Reply #1 on: July 20, 2018, 10:16:39 AM »
The fanciest banjo I've ever seen. Stewart made many banjos, but this was their fanciest. This was $125 in 1880, about $3000 today.

Interestingly, before microphones and amplification, banjos were preferred for bands instead of guitars because they're louder. Banjos were, at one time, considered even a classical instrument and what we could call classical music today was written for banjo orchestras.

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Offline AAAndrew

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Re: Odd and Fun Things from the Past
« Reply #2 on: July 20, 2018, 11:12:53 AM »
From an 1831 newspaper.

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Offline KristinT

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Re: Odd and Fun Things from the Past
« Reply #3 on: July 20, 2018, 01:28:16 PM »
That marriage announcement reads like quite the burn on Mrs. Earnest!

That banjo is gorgeous!  What a showpiece.  I wonder if anyone found that model very practical to play, as none of that ornamentation is remotely necessary.  I'm fortunate enough to own a beautiful bowl back mandolin from the early 1900s, and truly, antique instruments are delightful to handle.  Thank you for sharing these!

Offline AnasaziWrites

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Re: Odd and Fun Things from the Past
« Reply #4 on: July 20, 2018, 03:44:02 PM »
Regards the banjo:  what's really unusual is the fact it's a 5 string, not the more common (at that time) four string. Most of the 4 strings go for well under $1000. With that carving, it may fetch more than 3K if it were for sale now.
Good for old-timey music, with that open back. Not so good imho for bluegrass.

Offline AAAndrew

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Re: Odd and Fun Things from the Past
« Reply #5 on: July 20, 2018, 04:27:30 PM »
Regards the banjo:  ...  Good for old-timey music, with that open back. Not so good imho for bluegrass.

Just depends on how loud you want it to be. My son plays an open-back Deering and his training is bluegrass in the Scruggs style.  If you're in a band, you'll need a closed back to get the full voice, but the open back does give a nice sweet tone.

Here in North Carolina is a good place to hear a banjo from time to time.  ;D

Here's another one. It's not very clear, and I wish I could find the original source, but it's from about 1890, and it reminded me of a chain of cheap car painting shops here in the US back in the 70's, I think. They advertised you could get your whole car painted for $100. Here's the earlier version.

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Offline ash0kgiri

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Re: Odd and Fun Things from the Past
« Reply #6 on: September 29, 2018, 09:22:08 AM »
Andrew, Thanks for sharing these awesome advts. The first ad reminds me of playing that game during my childhood. We used to puncture the ball and tie it to a bat. India never had these products.

Offline AAAndrew

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Re: Odd and Fun Things from the Past
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2018, 01:12:36 PM »
How about this?
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Offline Jamie

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Re: Odd and Fun Things from the Past
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2018, 02:25:13 PM »
I couldn’t help but want to look up how old she actually lived until. Looks like she died a year later:
https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/117672029/nancy-tigue

Offline InkyFingers

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Re: Odd and Fun Things from the Past
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2018, 03:55:41 PM »
Perhaps taking someone's picture robs of their life too.  I am not going to have my picture taken.

Andrew, did you find something on this sort of matter?