Monday, June 8, 2015

page 22 -- J.W. Bussing, The Wellman & Dwire Tobacco Co., Miles & Beard

updated 1 November 2015
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from Shakespeare's Macbeth:
“Lay on, Macduff, and damned be him who first cries ‘Hold! enough!’”

change of plans?
The number in the lower left indicates this card is part of a series.

"When the cat's away, the mice will play," or maybe snooze...
which Wiktionary translates as
"In the absence of a controlling entity, subordinates will take advantage of circumstances."
Visual communication is quick, clear and forceful. Note that the idiom evoking the image of cats and mice has power that the Wiktionary definition lacks. Speak in pictures and you will be heard!

Looks like an actual cedar shingle in hand.
This form of discipline was common in many
households well into the 20th century.

a fairly common caricature in the 19th century

"Topsy" was a fictional character,
a racial stereotype.

Displayed by the Henry Ford Online Collections, the back of a J.W. Bussing card gives one an idea of the variety of goods sold by the store:


from Amsterdam, its Representative Business Men and Points of Interest, p.17
via Google Books and Archive.org
vicinity of 48 E. Main St., Amsterdam NY,
possible locaton of J.W. Bussey
Google Street View 2007
419-425 Payson Ave.
The Wellman & Dwire operation is described in this Google Books reference:

A more colorful logo appeared on some Mule Ear products (Library of Congress):



As the tobacco industry recognized the growing market power of African-Americans, racial stereotypes became less obnoxious. It doesn't pay to insult your potential customers!

Charles W. Miles & Samuel H. Beard
A stumper! Please comment below or email me if you find anything on either "Miles & Beard" or the Concord brand range...or the unhappy kitty....

It appears that a "J.G. Francis" may have designed this card. So far, I haven't been able to find anything about the artist, either.

The author of the first comment on this post has given permission to reproduce the lithograph we are discussing. Here is "Little Sarah;"

If you know anything about the artist or model,
please join our conversation. Thanks!

The inspiration for "Little Sarah" might go all the way back to a pamphlet published in 1847, "Jesus Says So - or a Memorial to Little Sarah G--" by the Religious Tract Society of London. With the help of the Guernsey County Public Library staff, I have also found a listing for an online auction of this work in 2005.
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