Category:
1950s

Tandem Smoker

Introduced in 1955: Jonathon Law's Tandem Smoker, aka the "sure-fire lonesomeness ender."

"The inventor envisions each lonely man packing a Tandem Smoker. All he has to do is light up, offer a passerby a mouthpiece, and the device will do the rest."

Image source: Fuzzy Dave



Independent Press Telegram - Sep 30, 1956



And you too could soon be smoking in tandem, because there's one available for $95 on eBay.

Posted By: Alex - Mon Nov 14, 2016 - Comments (5)
Category: Smoking and Tobacco, 1950s

Post Toasties

Here's an ad campaign over the course of a decade or so that shows the Mad Men flailing around blindly. Whom do we appeal to? Kings, Indian Chiefs, housewives, nursery-rhyme characters, despotic sea captains, or cartoon animals? Or, in the end, the anti-hippie conservatives embodied by Andy Griffith and his fancy-neckwear disparagement?















Posted By: Paul - Sun Oct 30, 2016 - Comments (2)
Category: Business, Advertising, Food, 1950s, 1960s

Plasticville, USA

image

Original ad here.

With no trace of modern irony, Plasticville USA was once deemed a grand name for an imaginary town. Somehow I can hear a beatnik of the era saying, "Plasticville, man, that's for squares!"

Wikipedia entry here.

More info and some great pictures on this page.

More images via Google.

Posted By: Paul - Sun Oct 23, 2016 - Comments (3)
Category: Toys, Urban Life, Bohemians, Beatniks, Hippies and Slackers, 1940s, 1950s

Fabulous Lady Diet Food

image

This is one of those rare instances where I can learn nothing on the internet about an old-time product. I suspect it was simply a forerunner of such drinks as Metrecal. If anyone can discover the secret ingredients of this drink, or even more press about it, they will be a master sleuth!

Original ad here.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Oct 20, 2016 - Comments (6)
Category: 1950s, Women, Dieting and Weight Loss

Polka Dotted Poliwampus

Posted By: Paul - Wed Oct 12, 2016 - Comments (5)
Category: Humor, Music, Surrealism, 1950s, Fictional Monsters

Destination Atlantis

Auto mechanic Frank Russell of Biggleswade, England spent two years building a submarine in his backyard. He did it, he said, so that he could find the "lost city" of Atlantis. He described the construction of the sub in an article distributed by International News Service (Dec 1949):

My job is that of a motor mechanic and these craft that I build are purely a spare time hobby. Thus I have to get on with their construction as I can afford it; a few shillings or a pound or so at a time. Believe me, this method is exasperating and heartbreaking.

Practically all the parts have been cut, filed and even some of the holes drilled with ordinary hand tools, though I did manage on several occasions to borrow an oxy-acetylene cutter and an electric drill.

I have built this craft entirely by myself except for some of the more tricky points of welding on the hull. This was done by a friend, who is a highly skilled factory welder.

This submarine has been built entirely out of second-hand steel plates and scrap from local yards. Oxygen cylinders, motors, batteries, and the like are all from government surplus sales. The only new items are the glass observation ports and some rivets and bolts.

The launch date for his sub was November 4, 1950. Unfortunately, I can't find any reports about the launch, but I'm assuming he didn't find Atlantis.

And I'm guessing he may have been pulling everyone's leg about wanting to search for Atlantis, because eight years later he was back in the news as the perpetrator of an elaborate UFO hoax involving a "do-it-yourself space ship made of wire, silver paper, clockwork and a couple of flashlights." So it seems that he was a bit of a practical joker.

The Eagle (Bryan, Texas) - Nov 8, 1950



New Castle News - Oct 7, 1949



The Decatur Herald - May 28, 1958

Posted By: Alex - Tue Oct 11, 2016 - Comments (2)
Category: Boats, Hobbies and DIY, 1950s

LSD for Housewives

Posted By: Paul - Sat Oct 01, 2016 - Comments (5)
Category: Drugs, Psychedelic, Government, Science, Experiments, 1950s

Follies of the Madmen #294



My favorite part is when this fellow puts his clasped hands to his cheek like a maiden about to faint.

Posted By: Paul - Fri Sep 30, 2016 - Comments (3)
Category: Business, Advertising, Products, Food, Stereotypes and Cliches, 1950s

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Alex is the creator and curator of the Museum of Hoaxes. He's also the author of various weird, non-fiction books such as Elephants on Acid.

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