Posts tagged with "retro"



03. January 2022
1940s Swann's Spearmint Chewing Gum advertising poster, from the MOFBA collection
First launched in 1934 the brand was produced and advertised by the O.C. Swann Chewing Gum Co. in Shanghai and distributed by Linson & Company as sole agents. It is unknown who exactly was behind O.C. Swann Co. (Chinese name 大通行) together with deputy director Lin Meibin (林梅宾), but the inspiration for their product was undoubtedly of questionable origin: the design and color scheme evidently bore a striking resemblance to that of American chewing gum pioneer Wrigley's. The...
26. December 2021
25. December 2021
24. December 2021
29. November 2021
1925 Shanghai calendar poster advertising for Sun-Maid raisins created by Carl Crow from the MOFBA collection
With community support, the California Associated Raisin Company was established in 1912 and membership comprised 85 percent of the state’s raisin growers. In 1915, the brand name Sun-Maid, coined by advertising executive E.A. Berg, was launched. Sun-Maid began developing raisin markets in Asia in 1918, and by 1922 had set up offices in Japan and China, where it immediately became a hugely popular brand. While raisins were considered to be commonly available foodstuffs by Americans, they were...
22. November 2021
Kissy kissy... newspaper ad for Three Cats cigarettes. The brand created by Yuen Hwa Tobacco was a knock-off of British premium cigarette brand Craven "A" who's design looked identical, except that it only featured a single black cat on the logo. Because of that it was commonly referred to by Chinese consumers as "black cat brand" cigarettes. More on Craven "A" in our previous post.
31. October 2021
Interesting to note that Martell’s Chinese brand name then still was 麦退而, based on the Shanghainese pronunciation “Mah-r-the”, in comparison to its modern day transliteration 马爹利 pronounced “Madieli” in Mandarin. Founded in 1715, Martell is the oldest of the great cognac houses and its original Chinese name was first mentioned in an 1872 Shun Pao newspaper article. Gande, Price & Company Ltd were wine and spirits merchants founded in 1892 with branches in Hong Kong,...
25. October 2021
"Wise men all choose to smoke Pirate cigarettes". They apparently are also awesome at basketball... 1930s ad poster from British American Tobacco (BAT) brand Pirate cigarettes.
18. October 2021
"Crane" Store wrapping paper 1940s - from the MOFBA collection
Crane Stores, Shoers & Hatters (鶴鳴鞋帽商店) was founded by the father of Jefferson Young, who soon after the opening of the first Shanghai store in 1936 took over the family business. The firm swiftly expanded to several locations in Shanghai and subsequently in Nanjing and Hong Kong. By 1950 it had 13 stores nationwide. Jefferson Young moved to Hong Kong in 1951 where he continued to manage the local Crane subsidiary. In 1952, Crane expanded to Singapore, soon after to Penang and...
19. September 2021
Manufactured by US company Otis and installed in 1924 at the Tientsin Astor House Hotel, when an additional building was joined to the original structure built in 1863. Otis was distributed in China by their agent American Trading Company until in 1930 the company established it's own office, located in the Shanghai Sassoon House.

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