Wednesday’s ad is from the Brewer’s Society’s “Beer is Best” campaign, from 1938. It’s the July image from “A Calendar Of British Beer” for the year 1938. Showing a pair of Shire horses hooked up to a wagon of wooden beer kegs, the idea was that such a scene wasn’t too far removed from “the way [beer] has always been brewed.”
Tuesday’s ad is for Old Milwaukee, from 1981. This was an advertising poster that Old Milwaukee put out in the early eighties. I’m not sure if the seductive model is somebody I’m supposed to know, or was famous in that time. Either way, I think it could definitely get better than that. For starters, better beer would be nice.
Monday’s ad is for Ruppert’s Knickerbocker — The Beer That Satisfies — from 1914. The Jacob Ruppert Brewery in New York put out this priceless ad during the inevitable march to prohibition, six years before it was enacted. They were obviously still hoping to turn public opinion with this great copy. “For the good of the public health, it is highly desirable that all prejudice against beer should be removed. This prejudice is held exclusively by people who do not drink beer.” The ad continues by listing great reasons why beer is so awesome. Unfortunately, it didn’t work.
Saturday’s ad is for Schlitz, from 1953. So what’s the going rate for a glass of beer? Why, a pair of pheasants, of course. And this as is a two-fer. There are not one, but two, magic bottles in the ad. Both full glasses shown have only half-empty bottles next to them, and in fact they look nearly full, with only a small amount just about reaching the top of the label gone.
Today, June 26, in 1997, the first Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, was published in the United Kingdom. If that title looks wrong to you, that’s because in America it was titled Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone because the published “thought that a child would not want to read a book with the word ‘philosopher’ in the title.” They may have been right, but it’s still a little sad. At any rate, in the seven novels there was something called “Butterbeer,” described as a drink that “can be served either cold with a taste similar to cream soda or frozen as a slush with a butterscotch-like foam on top.” Basically, it’s fake beer for kids. More interestingly, a Los Angeles artist or designer by the name of Anita Brown did a series of imaginary labels for beers based on the titles of each the seven books.
And here’s each title in order:
A fun exercise, with some fairly clever names. I wonder if the beers she chose would pair with the individual stories themselves? I only read the first two books, but didn’t really care that much for them; they never really grabbed me the way they did a lot of people. Another, somewhat similar, series that was published around the same time, the Golden Compass and the His Dark Materials trilogy was, in my opinion, was far richer and more interesting, but Harry Potter certainly was a phenomenon and anything that gets more people reading is a great thing in my opinion. Happy Harry Potter Day.
Thursday’s ad is for Great Britain brewers’ “Beer is Best” campaign, from 1935. Part of the British brewers series of ad promoting beer generally, this one focuses on an after work drink as a positive, where a man can “put away the cares of the day; restores his toil-spent energy; revives his flagging spirit.” But what stood out for me was at the bottom of the ad there’s a simple list of beer’s four ingredients, which they list as “Malt · Hops · Sugar · Yeast.” What was that third one again?
Wednesday’s ad is for Schlitz, from 1951. This is an odd ad, showing a man who could easily be mistaken for being in drag, but is just dressed up as a gypsy or fortune-teller. Wearing a goofy grin, he’s seeing a bottle of Schlitz and a full glass of beer in his crystal ball, apparently giving him the idea that a cold drink of beer would be a miracle after a hard day of work.
Tuesday’s ad is for Budweiser, from 1949. Part of Bud’s long-running “there’s nothing like it” series, the ad starts with “Waltz time, rhumba, foxtrot, swing,” showing a couple out dancing, dressed to the nines. You gotta love that teeny, tiny thin bow tie the man is wearing with his tux. But my favorite is a throwaway statement in the bottom right corner of the ad. “There’s more Budweiser — and there will be still more as our vast expansion program continues.” Uh oh.