1940’s Magazine Ads, Part One

From a "Sky Chief Luggage Ad.

From a “Sky Chief Luggage Ad.

I’ve been doing a study of magazine advertising from 1938 to 1946 or so.   Most of these are from the New Yorker.  I’ve also looked at LIFE, Saturday Evening Post and others.  Some of the details are really interesting.  I’ve been posting some scans on my facebook page.  I’ll share some here as well.  This is the first of two parts.  I may revisit this topic again in the future as well.  Ads of the 1950’s?


Some of the products and places being sold are no longer with us.  Do they still make  Allen’s toffee?

There was an ad for tourism in Cuba, back before the revolution. Then there’s this ad, making money out of misery:


It’s definitely strange and seems to be in poor taste, at the least. Then there’s this one.  A late World War Two airline ad seems to espouse a sense of a “One World” utopia:

Late 1944.

Late 1944.

There was a strange series of Elsie the Cow cheese ads.  Some ads were drawn by well-known cartoonists such as William Steig and Virgil Partch aka VIP.  Here’s a trio of aristocratic tomatoes:


I like the unusual design elements in many of these advertisements. By comparison, many of today’s print ads seem to be ugly or out-of-date even when they’re new.  Is the future here yet?


From a Sylvania Electronics Ad, circa mid 1940’s.


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