Thursday, November 1, 2012

Thanksgiving, Football, & Beer

Football is a Thanksgiving tradition in the United States. I am not really a sports fan, but I am a "Thanksgiving Girl" (I was born on Thanksgiving) and a beer lover.

This is a three-panel postcard advertising Aurora Brewing Co. beers. The image above shows the card when it is closed. When you open the cover part shown below, a Thanksgiving menu is revealed.

Click on the images below if you want to more easily read the text.

The menu seems rather elaborate. "There is nothing lacking" in this menu, which naturally includes A . B. C. Beer. I never would have thought of fried smelts as a Thanksgiving treat. However, the menu is quite similar to the  Thanksgiving at the White House, Circa 1887 menu, which also included fried smelts.

When fully open, the card has a message about supporting local enterprises. "You cannot get a purer, more wholesome or more satisfying beer any where than you get right here at home under the Aurora Brewing So.'s labels."

The center panel has a price list and a half-size postcard that can be used for ordering. You could have "Deliveries made in plain wagons if desired." (You might not want your neighbors to know you drank beer!)

The panel on the right has a message about the health benefits in A. B. C. Beer. You would never get away with this kind of advertising now!
A. B. C. Beer is a boon to the tired housewife--the run-down business man--every ailing member of the family. It sharpens the appetite--builds up the impoverished blood--imparts new life and vigor to the whole system. Your physician will advise the use of it.

When completely closed, the back of the card has a space for a mailing address and a stamp.

Here are views of the three panels as they look when when the card is open.

The following information about the Aurora Brewery is from Tavern Trove:
Trade names for the brewery at 430 River Street, Aurora, IL.
J.O. McInhill, Aurora Brewery 1874-1877
J.V. McInhill 1877-1884
J.P. Dostal (Addressed at 212 North River Street) 1886-1890
Aurora Brewing Co. 1890-1920
Brewery operations shut down by National Prohibition in 1920
Readdressed to 430 North River Street circa 1934
Reopened as the Aurora brewing Co. in 1934
Closed in 1939
Aurora Beer  1890 - 1920
Aurora Beer  1933 - 1939
For some history of Thanksgiving football, see Football on Thanksgiving: A Brief But Comprehensive History.

For More Vintage Images


  1. I have no problem with that menu, but for the smelts and the olives.
    Not a fan of teeny tiny bones in my food, and smelts have got those aplenty!

    Beer IS healthy, in moderation.

  2. I wonder what the neighbors were thinking when the plain wagon appeared in the street for the umpteenth time...

  3. Charlotte Russe is my favorite on this menu, if only because of the beautiful name.

  4. Ahhh Beeeeeeeeer. That's my vitamin energy drink of choice!

  5. An interesting card and menu, but I'd leave out the smelts too, and it's a bit heavy of cake and pie!

  6. That's a great ad for Aurora. Who wouldn't want to drink it?? And having it delivered is a plus!

  7. I would go easy on the turkey etc to save lots of room for the dessert. Fabulous card!

  8. I realized that my last image was wrong, so I fixed it.

  9. There was certainly plenty of food; very elaborate desserts. Menus have changed too, they have become lighter and more healthy, but perhaps not for thanks giving!

  10. An interesting bit of advertising! I came home from the hospital with my first baby on Thanksgiving Day. Her birthday falls on Thanksgiving sometimes, but she can't make the claim of Thanksgiving baby.

  11. An interesting bit of advertising! I came home from the hospital with my first baby on Thanksgiving Day. Her birthday falls on Thanksgiving sometimes, but she can't make the claim of Thanksgiving baby.

  12. Neighbours would soon catch on to what a plain wagon delivered.
    Very interesting way of advertising - a great card.

  13. Very different combination of advertising for sure. I was thinking that Aurora Beer might have something to do with CO and other than the town of that name in CO I had no reason to think so. I like the idea of delivery of the brew...a tradition lost?

  14. Great advertising and the idea of consuming products locally grown is very popular right now. Our avocados are "hand grown in California", slogan from the California Avocado Commission that creates our advertising. Beautiful and interesting card.

  15. So cool....and yes by the way she (we women) are so thankful and giving and wise!

  16. What an unusual postcard! Thanksgiving and football...Hmm, even back then!

  17. Beer is healthy as long as you don't drink too much. The postcard is a clever advertising tool, the menu looks inviting.

  18. Back when football was a live event, not televised. A community event, not just huge money making machines. I hadn't realized football and Thanksgiving went back so far together. I wonder when the first Thanksgiving came was played?

  19. I would definitely pass on the fried smelts and stewed parsnips, but I'll take turkey, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie. And I'd switch the beer for wine. Now that I've placed my order I have to say I really like this postcard! I didn't realize football was a Thanksgiving tradition as far back as that.

  20. I do believe in shopping "local" so I cannot fault this kind of advertising. And besides, it is lovely, well done.
    Thanx 4 sharing!!


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