Saturday, April 4, 2015

page 140 -- New England Clothing Co., S Booth & Son, The Concentrated Feed Company, Renne's Pain Killing Magic Oil, H & C Koevoets, Dr. Perrins and two unknowns

updated 26 January 2016
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Interested in games and puzzles? The Association of  Game and Puzzle Collectors will connect you
with folks who share your interests
.
From a 1996 talk by Jerry Slocum on Puzzle Cards  [FULL PDF]  comes this succinct explanation of both puzzle cards and the rise and fall of advertising trade cards in general:


Sam Loyd's "Trick Donkeys" puzzle card was one of his most famous creations.
From Google Books, commentary on the effectiveness of Sam Loyd's (correct spelling) puzzle trade cards emerges:










back of the puzzle card above
Via Google search and archive.org, we have a description of the Lynn, MA business that distributed this puzzle trade card from

Coincidence? On the corner of Market and Liberty Streets in Lynn MA stands a proud brick building with a large "1880" carved into its cornice. It is advertised as Masonic Hall and it appears the first floor and maybe the basement are used as retail space. The New England Clothing Company might have been the first retail tenant in this building.

Here's how it looked on Google Street View in Sept 2011:



S. Booth & Son operated out of Waterbury, CT as well as Thomaston.
alternate address 33 Wendell St., Boston

Despite testimonials to the contrary, the Massachusetts Agricultural Station did not give this product very favorable reviews, as per this Google Book entry from no.20, May 1886, p.6:


In the ad from Google Books below, Renne's cautioned that their oil did not set broken bones, though as you can see, it seemed to cure anything else anyone could imagine.

As indicated in this court settlement(from Google Books), the "Magic" in this oil was likely alcohol. While having almost no medicinal effect, it most likely was a placebo that inspired optimism about life in general!
Nonetheless, William Renne made a fortune selling this stuff. Pittsfield named a street after him.

In the lower right corner of the card above is seen:

H & C Koevoets was an engraving firm active around 1870. Below is one of their ads from Google Books 

According to Wikipedia cubeb is a tropical pepper.
There are various claims made for its medicinal properties.
Wikipedia says, "Cubeb was frequently used in the form of cigarettes for asthma, chronicpharyngitis and hay feverEdgar Rice Burroughs, being fond of smoking cubeb cigarettes, humorously stated that if he had not smoked so many cubebs, there might never have been Tarzan. "Marshall's Prepared Cubeb Cigarettes" was a popular brand, with enough sales to still be made during World War II."

Please post a comment or email me if you know
anything about E. I. Clapp's.  Thanks!
Here's another mystery merchant for you to research....

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