Peter Penny and his Magic Dollar

Back in the 1940s, it became popular for business groups to put out "publicity comics" whose purpose was to instill in youth business-friendly feelings. One example was "Peter Penny and his Magic Dollar" put out by the American Bankers Association. The plot of the comic was that Bob, a schoolboy, wants to know about banks, so his mentor, Peter Penny, takes him around on a magic dollar to teach him about all the wonderful things that banks and bankers do.

I can't find a complete copy of this comic online, but a few pages of it can be read over at

     Posted By: Alex - Mon Jun 02, 2014
     Category: Business | Advertising | Comics | 1940s

The reason they're not reprinting that today is because you'd not make it to the end of the block on today's dollar.

There were many such schemes around to get folks (and kids) into the habit of socking away a few sheckles a week. Kids had cards with coin slots in them that, once full, opened an account IN THEIR OWN NAME or added to the balance. Special piggie banks that could ONLY be opened by the bank personnel (even the managers were in on this one) And, of course the ubiquitous 'Christmas Club' for Mom & Dad.

This is, also, about the time that personal credit was loosened up and folks could get a few hundred for incidentals. Mortgage loans were being approved and 'the lay away plan' was offered in most stores & shops.
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 06/02/14 at 10:49 AM
I was reminded of Reddy Kilowatt and his cousin Reddy Flame as spokesmen for the public electricity and gas suppliers. The message was similar in educating the public about the benefits of two such helpful friends.
Posted by KDP on 06/02/14 at 12:58 PM
Alzheimer's is a terrible disease. I seem to remember a time when you could put a small deposit in a bank and actually have a bit more money from 'Interest' when you wanted it back. A penny found got you some candy.
Posted by BMN on 06/02/14 at 03:48 PM
Ah, yes, Reddy Kilowatt!
Posted by Phideaux on 06/02/14 at 06:44 PM
I remember penny candy too BMN! Those were the days.
Posted by Patty in Ohio, USA on 06/02/14 at 08:06 PM
I remember when you could SHARE your one penny's worth of candy.
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 06/02/14 at 10:30 PM
Expat remembers wax gum and when unflavored chicle gum came out when they were looking for a new rubber substitute.
Posted by BrokeDad in Midwest US on 06/02/14 at 10:46 PM
I do! I also remember colored 'dots' of hard sugar on a long strip of paper. Most times you got more paper than sugar but it turned to sh1t by morning.

There were, also, these wax 'bottles' of sugar water. You could either bite the top off and drink the water or (he-man stuff coming here) just pop the whole thing into your mouth and chew. HooYea!
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 06/02/14 at 11:01 PM
Any body else notice that Expat said "could share" and not "did share" his candy?
Posted by BMN on 06/03/14 at 01:13 AM
Damn right! It was MY penny candy!!! Go bum a nickle off your own Grandma if you want candy.
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 06/03/14 at 01:15 AM
Expat, I'll bet you did share! :lol: :coolsmile:
Posted by Tyrusguy on 06/03/14 at 09:40 AM
I remember when banks actually did provide their customers with some much-needed financial security...
Posted by Richard Bos on 06/03/14 at 10:40 AM
@Ty: If I admit to that it will erode my image.
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 06/03/14 at 11:50 AM
Toasters for opening an account and handy vinyl rain "bonnets" for the ladies.
Posted by Flamingo1 on 06/03/14 at 05:14 PM
Expat you are just as sweet as the delicious chocolate you treated me to. 💋
Posted by Patty in Ohio, USA on 06/03/14 at 08:12 PM
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