Friday, October 22, 2010
Yates man intrigued by old news
“We were remodeling our room and took the picture off the wall and noticed the back had come loose,” Mark Hobbs said. Inside, the couple could see a number of old newspapers, probably used as padding between the portrait and the backing.
“They were Iola Registers form 1943,” Mark noted.
Hobbs brought the papers into the Register office recently to share with anyone interested.
“I just thought it was neat,” he said of the old papers.
Back then, America was in the midst of World War II. Judging from ads in the paper, though, Iolans didn’t suffer too much deprivation. Offered were mink-dyed fur coats — including some of skunk and numerous social activities. Six groceries vied for Allen Countians bucks, offering Post Toasties for 8 cents a box, coffee at 26 cents per pound and flour, $2 for 48 pounds. Ground beef went for 29 cents a pound, and apple cider was offered — “No ration coupons needed.”
In June, a “Midnight Voodoo Party and Zombie Thrill Show” was offered live on stage at the Iola Theater.
Hobbs was tickled by an ad for Gates rubber belts in the June 3 edition. “I’ve worked at Gates for 12 years,” he noted.
The most prominent nod to the war came in the form of a daily cartoon, put out by the military, espousing the virtues of signing up and supporting the war effort. Crossword puzzles featured the portrait of a medal of honor winner at their center. And the front page had a daily brief, “Today in the War.”
The paper itself was much wider than today’s.
But some things haven’t changed — Society news still told of hospitalizations and happenings. Register ads still touted the effectiveness of classified advertising. And classifieds still told of lost cows and cars for sale.
The “25 years ago” column was even there — reminding folks of the happenings of 1918.
“It just amazes me,” Hobbs said of the contents.
“I thought it would be neat to share.”