STUMP » Articles » Memory Monday: Third Week of May 1918 » 21 May 2018, 04:55

Where Stu & MP spout off about everything.

Memory Monday: Third Week of May 1918  

by

21 May 2018, 04:55

For all I complain about using war jargon to sell food and other items in my traipse through history, none of the WWI ads I’m coming across are as crass as the ones in this Cracked piece:7 Products That Bizarrely Use War As A Marketing Tool.

Also – if you follow that link – just be warned some of those items are very crass. You have only yourselves to blame.

[Yes, I’m still having internet problems, but thank goodness, the electric problems are over. Here is my story of last week.… well, one evening of my story.]

GIFTS FOR SOLDIERS

A few thoughts for soldiers:

I really wish I knew what that last item was, but as I’ve mentioned before, the scans of the 1918 newspapers are really poor. I’m sure they had lower quality paper in the duration.

And here’s an ad for buying gifts:

MEMORIAL DAY

Keep in mind that Memorial Day, in memory of those who fell in battle fighting for the U.S., was instituted post-Civil War.

It was originally focused on Union soldiers from the Civil War. I come from the South, so obviously, the memorials were a bit different in Georgia and the Carolinas… back in the day. It changed a little in WWI, but not much then. It really changed post-WWII. That’s when the South finally saw themselves as part of the Union again.

And then the Yankees re-invaded in the 1970s, once air conditioning was really effective. But that’s okay – lots of us Southerners reverse-invaded Yankeeland. That’s why you can get decent barbecue in New York now. The immigrants to NY come from everywhere, after all.

A bit more lowly-minded, here’s a piece about asking about men’s war record for political purposes:

YOUTH HAS ALWAYS BEEN CALLOW…UNTIL SUDDENLY THEY AREN’T

Those college boys:

STUFF!

Tungsten!

Soda!

TOP BILLING: BIRTH OF A NATION

So.

Here’s a thing.

As I’ve been reading this newspaper, week by week, I have a good idea of a “big” advertising campaign.

Those above two ads look like nothing to us, but that’s a fairly big promo compared to others I’ve seen in this paper.

There is a reason Birth of a Nation, as incredibly racist as it is, is still an important movie for film students to learn. I see it like Wagner (but lesser): Wagner has some really nasty shit in his art, and he made some major breakthroughs in how opera is conceived and staged. The Birth of a Nation was already a few years old at this point, but given the U.S. was in the middle of a war… and that President Wilson really liked the film… to quote the wiki article:

The Birth of a Nation was the first American motion picture to be screened inside the White House, viewed there by President Woodrow Wilson.

It also helps to remember that the U.S. president at the time, was incredibly racist Virginian Woodrow Wilson. Sure, Wilson had been president of Princeton University before, but racism was not considered a lower-class opinion at the time.

MISCELLANEOUS

A few items not fitting in the above —

Gas point/counterpoint:

Telephone operators in the war:

FWIW, I see the text cuts off, to continuation… but I found nothing of the followup. This wasn’t unusual in the newspapers of the day… they’d just cut off the text when there was no more room.

Pay your damn phone bills:

I don’t know if the shaming campaign was successful.

Somehow, I doubt it.

As for the Spanish flu… nope, no suspicious deaths yet. There was one notice on whooping cough, but that was fairly endemic among children before widespread vaccination.

I’m still waiting for the September breakout of Spanish flu. We’ll see if it’s covered at all.