…and welcome as we begin a new year of Pleasant Family Shopping, where we take a look at and discuss America’s great chain store history – old discount stores, supermarkets, and maybe even the occasional department or specialty store thrown in just for grins! Illustrated in artistic black-and-white, lifelike natural color and (wherever possible) super-saturated color, as in the photo above!
A young woman (dressed appropriately for grocery shopping, I might add) peruses the cereal aisle in this Weyerhaeuser packaging promotional photo from a 1960 McGraw Hill advertising text. I would date the actual photo itself back to 1957, based upon the cereal box designs and the expert guidance of Dan Goodsell’s Cereal Box Archive on his wildly entertaining Tick Tock Toys/Imaginary World website. And wow, 17 cents for a box of Corn Flakes!
They say that you can tell a lot about someone from what they buy, so let’s take a look, eh? Let’s see…Medosweet milk, which would locate this scene probably in the Washington state area…a Kellogg’s cereal “Variety Pak”…(Costs more this way, but hey – everyone’s happy)…umpteen packages of Jello…(There must’ve been a federal mandatory minimum Jello purchase in those days)…a Flintstones-sized steak…(There’ll be some hearty eatin’ tonight!)…a two-pound box of Nabisco Premium saltines…(Never seen one of those before, guess the fam must be into soup!)…eggs, celery and egg noodles…(Rounding out the food groups - sure was easier in those pre-pyramid days when there were only four)…a carton of Chesterfields…(Who needs filters? Besides, Perry Como smokes ‘em! On his show!)…a six-pack of Pabst Blue Ribbon…(Obviously a family of taste)…and let’s not forget the box of Tide, “The Washday Miracle”…(Definitely among the most photogenic of consumer products). So there you have it – a thrifty homemaker eager to please her Pabst drinkin’, Chesterfield smokin’, Red-meat eatin’ family!