Historical Albion Michigan
By Frank Passic

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Any photos not otherwise credited are from the personal collection of Frank Passic, Albion Historian.


Morning Star, July 2, 1995, pg. 10

It is always exciting to read old Albion newspapers from 80 or 90 years ago. Back then they printed whatever they could, names, circumstances, details, and all. Nothing was “alleged” like it is today--it actually happened! I am always coming across humorous articles which I copy and save for my Albion history archives. This week I’ll share a couple of these with our readers.

The first is an article which was published in the December 11, 1909 edition of our local paper, entitled “May Bring Down Federal Wealth.” Uncle Sam is Curious About a New Business Established in Albion.” The article goes like this:

“Albion has a business in which she is unaware. She would not be especially proud of the success of the venture and would not crave for the particular kind of advertising which she is getting from the advertisements put out by the person who is conducting this industry. The following advertisement has been brought to our attention and it is rumored that it has also been referred to the notice of the post office department. The following is the advertisement as it appeared in the Police Gazette: “Rich, racy postcards; the kind men want; 6 for 15¢, 12 for 25¢. Box 162, Albion, Mich.”

“The same ad has been found in Vanity Fair. If the cards which are sent out by this Albion firm are half as suggestive as the advertisements, they are subject to the censure of the postal authorities.

Albion welcomes any legitimate advertising spread broadcast because all this helps to keep the name of the city before the public. However, as a city we are not eager for this particular brand of publicity. We do not wish to pose as a distributing station for immodest post cards.”

One disclaimer: Please do not write P.O. Box 162 and see if this firm is still in business at that address today. However, I wonder who the local person was who was printing these “racy postcards,” and why they advertised in the Police Gazette? Was it an off-duty officer trying to supplement his income?

There’s nothing like a good book to keep you occupied on a cold, rainy day. We see books advertised all the time--even in this computer age. The Friday, May 13, 1910 edition of our local paper carried an advertisement for a book designed to help the businessman from spending long overtime hours at the office when he should be at home with his family.

A noble cause, to be sure. But what caught my eye in this advertisement was the title of the book, illustrated this week here in our Historical Notebook. Entitled, “Why Don’t You Go Home?,” this book would make a great “conversation piece” to leave standing up on the coffee table when unwanted guests arrive. I wonder if this book is available in reprint form today?

“Why Don’t You Go Home?”


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