I took a long hike at Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park on Wednesday (from the visitor center over Big and Little Kennesaw Mountain down to Burnt Hickory Grove and back to the visitor center around the base of the mountain). If you live in/near Atlanta and haven't been there, you must take a half of a day to explore it. I snuck away by telling my wife that I am teaching a Civil War class and need to scout locations (visions of field trips are dancing in my head). I have written about a previous visit to KM here.
While there I couldn't help but buy a couple of things in the bookstore. Many of the items can be found at virtually any local historical site. I got two reproductions of Harper's Weekly: A Journal of Civilization ($2.00 each). One is dated April 27, 1861 and the other July 23, 1864. I didn't get them for their articles or illustrations but for the ads on the last two pages. I will be working them into lessons on advertising, primary sources, and the Civil War. In some ways, the ads reveal that little has changed: get rich quick schemes, balding prevention, magical medicines, new technologies, testimonials, etc. The change in ad content from 1861 (the very beginning of the Civil War) to July of 1864 (when war weariness was beginning to weigh on the coming presidential election) is also very suggestive.
What follows is a selection of the 1861 Harper's Weekly ads. Others I left out include pianos, muslin shirts, paper ties, horse medicine, a patent baby-tender, a ladies' fashion book, and other similar items (my comments in italics):
Premature Loss of the Hair,
Which is so common now-a-days, may be entirely prevented by the use of Burnett's Cocoaine. It has been used in thousands of cases where the hair was coming out in handfuls, and has never failed to arrest its decay, and to promote a healthy and vigorous growth. It is, at the same time, unrivaled as a dressing for the hair. A single application will render it soft and glossy for several days.
For several days? Does this mean they didn't wash their hair for...several days? Even if users continue to lose hair, I am sure they feel much better about themselves after using Burnett's Cocoaine.
"Matrimony made Easy."--A new work, showing how either sex may be suitably married, irrespective of age or appearance, which can not fail--free for 25 cents. Address T. Williams & Co., Publishers, Box 2300, Philad.
I love it: free for 25 cents! The rest of this ad speaks for itself.
$5,000 REWARD--TO ANY SOBER energetic man who fails to make $2,000 a year. Business easy, honest and at home. For full particulars, inclose a stamp for return, and address
A.D.F., Box 78, P.O., Wellsburg, Va.
I wonder if it involves stuffing envelopes?
6000 AGENTS wanted, to sell SIX NEW INVENTIONS--two very recent, and of great value to families; all pay great profit to Agents. Send four stamps and get 80 pages particulars. EPHRAIM BROWN, Lowell, Mass.
What do you think: Amway or Tupperware?
SANDS' SARSPARILLA--The best Spring Alternative. It will purify the blood, promote a vigorous circulation and thoroughly renovate the system. For sale by A.B. & D. SANDS, 100 Fulton St., N.Y.
Wheeler & Wilson's Sewing Machings At reduced prices, with Glass Cloth Presser, Improved Loop-Check, New Style Hammer, Binder, Corder, etc. Office No. 595 Broadway, New York.
"This Machine makes the 'LOCK STITCH,' and ranks highest, on account of the elasticity, permanence, beauty, and general desirableness of the stitching when done, and the wide range of its application." [Report of the American Institute, New York.
5,000 Men Wanted To Sell LLOYD'S NEW POLITCAL CHART FOR THE TIMES, containing large, new, colored Portraits of PRESIDENT LINCOLN AND HIS CABINET, GEN. SCOTT, GEN. WOOL, MAJ. ANDERSON, AND LIEUT. SLEMMER, with a sketch of the life of each. A MAP OF OUR COUNTRY, showing, in different colors, the FREE STATES, BORDER SLAVE STATES, SECEDED STATES, and TERRITORIES.
Also, accurate Election and Census Returns for 1860, with much other valuable information.
Finely colored on excellent paper, 28X36 inches in size.
Mailed, pre-paid, for 25 cents. (Stamps received.)
A RARE CHANCE FOR AGENTS.
Published by H.H. LLOYD & CO'S,
Agents' General Depot for BOOKS, MAPS, AND STATIONARY PACKAGES, No. 25 Howard Street, New York.
Capitalism always finds a way to make good on national crises.
General Scott's Infantry Tactics; or, Rules for the Exercise and Maneuvres of the United States Infantry. 3 vols. 24mo, Muslin, #2 50. Published by Authority.
United States Army Regulations. Approved by the President of the United States, and Printed under the directions of the Secretary of War. 12 mo, Muslin, $1 50.
Published by HARPER & BROTHERS, Franklin Square, New York.
I shall post the ads from 1864 tomorrow. Until then, some pictures:
One of the few monuments at Kennesaw (compared, say, to Chickamauga). The inscription reads:
We sleep here in obedience to law:
When duty called, we came,
When country called, we died.
How may students will see in this inscription an echo of the Spartan memorial at Thermopylae: Go, stranger, and tell the Spartans that we lie here in obedience to their laws.
View from the top looking north to the North Georgia Mountains.
View from the top looking south to the Atlanta hazeline. Usually one can see Stone Mountain but the haze was too bad.
Gun emplacements at Fort McBride on top of Little Kennesaw Mountain.