Retelling SHS Stories: Indianapolis of Old Reflected In Aged Annuals

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Shortridge Daily Echo — January 26, 1949

Indianapolis of Old Reflected In Aged Annuals

By Ann Robinson

It may pay to advertise but some of the ads in Echoes and Annuals of by-gone days would have a hard time bringing in that “Fruit of All Evil” today.

Ladies and gentlemen could pick even their kitchen stoves, see-saws, hair, and microscopes from the Echo’s pages. The only article which didn’t seem to be advertised there were Caesar ponies.

An entire page in an Annual once professed the merits of corsets with that whalebone hip. Another Annual announced that the purchasing power of a nickel could get you the cigar with the choice Sumatra wrapper.

In the line of real estate truly sound investments were offered. North of 38th Street you could buy lots filled with noble forest trees for only $400. The ad also proudly declared, “No taxes.”

At 45 Monument Place was situated the most up-to-date livery in town. This establishment was proud of its saddle horses but their carriages with rubber wheels were unsurpassed.

Naturally all the latest fads were publicized, including lace kid tans and mandolins. The mechanically minded could save some jack (moola to us) by buying bicycles that you made at home. Tandems were ultra-popular. A guy who owned a tandem outrated all other competition.

But times have changed, tandems are shunned and those advertisements of the past only bring chuckles to the present modern inventive world. And yet, who can foretell the future? Fifty years from now we might happen upon an ancient Echo and be seized with a melancholic longing for the days of soapy schmoos and saddle shoes.

This story is a part of the series Retelling SHS Stories produced by the Shortridge Archives. The Shortridge Archives meets on alternating Tuesdays and Thursdays weekly. For more information email Mr. Durrett at [email protected] Stay tuned for more stories like this one!