Musings on the Novelty of Novelties

Novelties or premiums were once (and doubtless still are) ways to entice the casual customer to consume. Free sets of dishes, comic books, trade cards (and more recently, of course, MacDonald’s famous choking toys). The novelty was linked to the ancillary products that produced income for films and shows. The novelty is also what made shopping so sweet.

I recall in the late fifties as a young budding consumer, flitting from one drugstore or supermarket to the next, just collect their premiums. My favorite, though I misplaced it decades ago was an Indian (Native American) headband and feather promoting Armour bacon and presented (in my local Dagastino’s) by a real-faux Indian. I went back for so many, the manager wouldn’t let me into the store until the limited supplies were gone.

In the spirit of the self-declared Novelty Appreciation Week, here are a couple of other prized specimens from the nostalgic past.

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