I’ve been perusing the Sears, Roebuck & Co. catalog again. I just can’t help myself. I’ve decided to start a weekly post about neat things I find each year as I “shop through the ages”.
I love seeing things that my ancestors may have bought. Some seem silly, but then again – have you ever seen the stuff they sell on infomercials at night?? Times haven’t changed that much, have they?
This week, I am highlighting the 1896 Spring Catalog. Come shopping with me.
- A combination child’s carriage and chair. This looks like quite the contraption! Being a mother, I can appreciate how nice it is to have your baby tied down for a bit. I’m only partially kidding. There are so many things for them to get into! And this is the age before the exersaucer – and Cheerios (Or maybe not. I don’t know how long Cheerios have been around). Anyway, the chair actually lowers and the wheels come out. You can then push your baby around the house. I don’t know that it would be appropriate for outside though. The wheels look a bit tipsy to me.
- “Delay is dangerous when bargains like this are flying around”. I love the ad campaign to sell this couch, which is billed as “The Greatest Thing in The World”.
- How about a telephone? I’d love to have one of these antiques someday.
- Or a “concert roller organ”? I wonder what the quality of the music this produced was.
- A “Scholar’s Companion” whatever that is. I couldn’t quite figure it out. Is it a small safe to lock your special possessions inside? Any ideas?
- What about a full beard – or maybe just a goatee? These couldn’t have looked real. Why on earth would someone have needed these? Maybe for a play? I can’t imagine someone actually walking around town in one of these – even if you spent the extra money for the “ventilated” version.
- Anybody up for a board game? How about “The Rival Doctors”? It is the “race for a rich patient by the doctors of a country village”.
- Maybe you’re in the market for a new hat. Doesn’t this one look comfortable?
- What kid wouldn’t want to wear this? Doesn’t exactly make you want to run outside and climb a tree, does it?
- I have to admit that after having nursed 5 babies myself, I have often wondered how on earth women could possibly feed their babies when they were wearing a corset. I could imagine some very hungry, screaming infants out there, waiting for their moms to “get to the food” so to speak. Apparently, they had nursing corsets! Really!
- Don’t slouch around your mom. She might make you wear one of these shoulder braces! “A Cure for Round Shoulders”.
- I can’t imagine living without a full bathroom in the house. I suppose if you have to have a “toilet set” though, it might as well be pretty. It lists the different pieces included in the set. Does anyone know what the difference between a chamber and a slop jar are? Just curious. I’m sure that neither had a very nice function.
- Could you see yourself cruising around the neighborhood on this? I would imagine that you’d end up pushing it more than actually riding.
- What’s that you said? Huh? Still can’t hear you, Sonny!
- Wow, cameras have come a long way!
- And I’ll leave you with this: a picture of a full dining room from 1896.
See you next time, when we shop through 1897!