Monday, April 22, 2013

It's Historic - The State, 1931

 I spied the huge book on a table at Mema Had One, the cute antiques shop where I found the Mother's Day chair.

I knew what it was immediately though I haven't seen one in ages.

A bound book of all The State newspapers from October through December, 1931.

I put the dollar bill on it so you can see it is the size of a newspaper.

Both Chucks and I enjoy old letters, magazines, and newspapers.  This was an utter treasure trove of South Carolina history.

We paged through it for an hour and then went back later to read some more.

Please just humor me as I show just peeks of what historical bits we found.

 It has come unbound from the cover and some of the pages are darkened by age and brittle.

This is how we did research before computers, before microfilm, before copiers - just tons of bound publications.

I remember in college going down into the depths of the library basement to search for topics for projects. I would dragged these heavy books over to a table to copy by hand the information.

A good hat for $3.50!

 The banner of The State newspaper is still the same except the palmetto tree is smaller.

 Smart shoes for the college girl at $6.85.

Plus I need to go back and read The Penalty of Gray Hair.

 Dresses to go with your shoes just $11.

The ad says it all:  "Hardly Believable"

We noticed several ads for WIS, our favorite TV station.  Of course back then it was a radio station.  Here are some choices of cabinet radios.

If you are ever out and about and find one, buy it.  You can tear out the guts and make a lovely display cabinet.

Carolina Gamecock fans may not remember freshman were not allowed to play varsity football.  There were freshmen teams - the Carolina Biddies!

The middle article states the varsity team will be carrying milk cans of the Columbia water to their game at Florida.  

The water is good in Columbia.  In fact, it is sold under several brand names now.

Notice they call the Gamecocks the Birds!

I do not ever remember reading anything about Tarzan going to the Earth's core and finding a tribe of people living there.  (Doesn't Tarzan appear to have an awesome set of man boobs?)

It was a popular comic strip along with Mutt and Jeff.

Three of the movies playing on this particular day:


Suicide Fleet

The Gay Buckeroo

 In 1931, the Christmas Seal was 25 years old.

 I found these two notices in the classified ads.  They are very poignant.  Remember this country was struggling to recover from the effects of the Depression.

There were many ads for cheap rooms wanted for families.

 For all of you who think those strapless tubes of satin are wedding dresses - this is a wedding dress!

Need a new Chevrolet Six?

Only $475 - the great American value for 1932!

Yes, the entire cost of the car - not just one payment!

You could go to the Hole-in-the-Wall Shoe Store for cheaper shoes.

Look galoshes for 98c !

At this point of reading through the papers, I finally noticed that way back in 1931 even the printing blocks for newspapers did NOT have a cents sign!

 Piggly Wiggly - affectionately known as The Pig now - had specials for your Christmas dinner.

 The grocery stores would deliver the groceries to your house - if you were lucky enough to have a telephone!

 There were troubling events happening around the world.  These events led to World War II.  Here is an article about Japan invading China.

In the side article on the right, read how pigeons brought the news from Manchuria when the telegraph lines went down.

Pigeons were used as methods of getting news.

Early Tweets.

 This cafe served a Christmas turkey dinner for 75c - stayed open all day, too.

December 25 - Christmas Day, 1931.

I hope some of you were as fascinated by all these bits of history as Chucks and I.  I plan to find a small table or desk to display this.  I will have to find a stool or chair so anyone can sit and read and travel back in time.  I am sorry, but I do not see someone in 80 years walking into an antiques shop exclaiming, "Oh, look.  It's a Kindle (or Nook or whatever)!"  There is just something about the touch and smell and sight of an old newspaper that can thrill the soul and spur the imagination.  I hope they never go away.

See y'all!

UPDATE:   Vicky Hunt sent me over to a 2009 post at Between Naps on the Porch  where she used several of these for a side table.  READ HERE.  Thanks!

SECOND UPDATE:  Susan at Between Naps on the Porch sent a link to a post she did on the Macon, Georgia bound newspapers.  She shows several articles and ads.  READ HERE.  Thanks!



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  1. Newspapers, yes, tube bridal dresses, no.

  2. I have an old cabinet radio in my tack shed...
    If I could ever get a few men rounded up to move the old grain bin, so I could retrieve it, I would gutt it and redo it. It's beatufiul~!
    Awesome reading. Thanks for the smile today...
    Jen @ Lace Crazy

  3. This is a fabulous volume! Chiffon hoisery????? WOW!

  4. You are so right. Don't you just love how the history and tradition jump off the pages. You definitely learn something of the people and the times here. I'm mesmerized by such things. Thanks for taking so many great pics of the different ads and such. What a fun read! And I agree about the tube dresses. When I Pierina's scrapbook and saw the wedding dresses and even more so the flowers the brides all held, it was obvious that much has been lost over the decades.

  5. This is awesome Donna! I so agree with you on the sight and smell of old print....newspapers, books, whatever. I immediately thought of a post over at Between Naps On the Porch where she took several of these big "books" of newspaper and stacked them to create and end table. It is under DIY, then furniture, then scroll down to the thrid row and it;s on the right...if you want to see it. It is so cool! Thanks for sharing yours....and I agree with Liz, it's just mesmerizing!

    Life On Willie Mae Lane

    1. Thanks, Vicky, you will notice I updated this post with the new info!

  6. Donna, aren't these just amazing! Loved seeing the articles and ads in your 1931 bound papers! I could sit for hours reading these! :)

  7. I can lose myself in old newspapers for hours and the ads are my very favourite part. That's a find that will provide hours of entertainment! Someone just gave me a Kindle and I can't get over not having a real book in my hand. It just feels like I'm staring at a computer screen. I don't think it's going to be the route to go for me!

  8. Hey Donna; What a Wonderful find!!! I would absolutely love finding one of those books, as I enjoy pouring over the past.
    I think that it is so nice that you are going to find a place of honor for this, so that friends and family can have the chance to relax read and learn some things from another period in time!!!
    Thank-You for sharing so many interesting photos!!

  9. I LOVE your blog! I found you on I Gotta Create's Wildly Original Link Party...and I am so glad! I feel right at home! ;) Happy to be following you!

    Joy @ Yesterfood

  10. This is so cool! I do have one of those old cabinets that used to be a radio cabinet.:) Thank you for sharing this at Rustic Restorations Weekend.


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