Wayback Wednesday: Signs of the Times in Downtown Chicago

Today, we turn the calendar back not just ten years to March 11, 2010, but to an earlier period in Chicago, when every respectable woman had a corset, and every respectable man his wagon.

Advertisement for Gossard’s corsets: They lace in front!

The photographs of these two advertisements painted on Chicago buildings were taken downtown. Exactly where escapes our feeble minds and feebler record-keeping. The one above is an advertisement for the H.W. Gossard Company’s corsets. Apparently women should wear them because, “They lace in front.” Certainly handy for everyone involved.

The Gossard company’s heyday was in the 1920’s and 1930’s, making this sign about the same age as Betty White, who was born in Oak Park.

Fun fact: Betty White was born before mechanically sliced bread was invented. So when you think something is really keen, you should say, “That’s the best thing since Betty White!”

“…and delivery wagons” sign.

This next one promotes Something Something And Delivery Wagons. Time has been less kind to this sign, and if you have a better camera or memory than we do, please let us know what it is that’s escaping our attention here.

Author: Editor

Editor founded the Chicago Architecture Blog in 2003, after a long career in journalism. He can be reached at chicagoarchitectureinfo@gmail.com.

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