Sunday, July 17, 2011

Two advertisements from March 1948 issue of Coronet

I picked up a few old issues of Coronet magazine recently at the annual Book Nook Bonanza.1 Coronet was digest-sized magazine that ran for 299 issues, spanning October 1936 to March 1971.2

The March 1948 issue is notable because there's an announcement on the first page indicating that this was the first issue that would include advertising:
"To insure our readers an ever-better magazine, Coronet with this issue opens its pages to a limited number of representative advertisers. In the face of rising paper and printing costs, this step was necessary to maintain Coronet's high editorial quality without increasing the price3 of the magazine to subscribers and newstand buyers."
This issue's articles include:
  • "In Memoriam to an Unknown Little Girl" by John Cleary
  • "Raw Water Can Kill You!" by J.D. Ratcliff
  • "Who Wears the Pants in Your Family?" by Marynia F. Farnham, M.D.
  • "Who Remembers Lotta Crabtree?" by Jack Hamilton
  • "Amos & Andy: Two Angels in Blackface" by George Frazier
  • "J. Edgar Hoover: America's Master of the Hunt" by Bill Davidson
  • "Ever Eat at Krebs?" by Lloyd Mann4
Here are two of those first advertisements to appear in the pages of Coronet. The back cover of the magazine features this advertisement for Nescafé:

I like that the advertisement has its own footnote:
"Nescafé (pronounced NES-CAFAY) is the exclusive registered trade-mark of Nestle's Milk Products, Inc. to designate its soluble coffee product. It is composed of equal parts of pure soluble coffee and added carbohydrates (dextrins, maltose and dextrose) added solely to protect the flavor."
Meanwhile, the inside back cover of Coronet features a color advertisement for the Kelvinator refrigerator (which probably would have cost between $200 and $250):

1. I mentioned another find from the Book Nook Bonanza in this Peter Falk post.
2. Coronet had a sister company called Coronet Films, which produced educational films. Some of those films are now available in the public domain, some have been gathered for recent DVD collections and some have been the subject of gentle ribbing on "Mystery Science Theater 3000." Coronet Films titles include:
  • Appreciating Your Parents (1950)
  • Are You a Good Citizen? (1949)
  • Are You Popular? (1947)
  • Beginning to Date (1953)
  • Better Use of Leisure Time (1950)
  • Communism (1952)
  • Facing Reality (1954)
  • How Billy Keeps Clean (1951)
  • I Want to Be a Secretary (1941)
  • Improve Your Personality (1951)
  • Joan Avoids a Cold (1947)
  • Self-Conscious Guy (1951)
3. Coronet's cost was 25 cents per issue.
4. Here's the opening paragraph of that article: "If you have $3.50 left in the world and wish to commit suicide as pleasantly as possible, try eating yourself to death at 'Krebs-1899' restaurant in Skaneateles, New York. It will cost you just that - no more, no less."

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