Rough on Rats Advertising Card

Source: Laupus Health Sciences History Collection

Staff Person: Matt Reynolds

Description: This late 19th Century advertising card for E.S. Wells Rough on Rats vermin extermination powder depicts a peeved family chasing a variety of pests from their home.  The powder, which contained a mixture of arsenic and ground coal was said to “clear out rats, mice, flies, bed-bugs, ants, roaches, mosquitoes, etc.”.  The Wells Company, based in Jersey City New Jersey, offered a wide range of products including Rough on Corns, Rough on Itch, Rough on Toothache, and Wells’ Health Renewer.

Wells promoted all of the company products far and wide in both newspapers and via advertising cards.  He even produced a Rough on Rats song touting the effectiveness of the poison, which included the chorus:
“R-r-rats! Rats! Rats! Rough on Rats, Hang your dogs and drown your cats:
We give a plan for every man to clear his house with Rough on Rats”

Sadly, some purchasers of the product chose to misuse it both to take their own lives and to take the lives of others. The most notorious case of the latter was the poisoning of Ada Appelgate by her husband Everett Appelgate and his mistress Frances Creighton.  Both were convicted of murder in 1936 and were sent to the electric chair at New York’s Sing-Sing prison shortly after.

Tobacco Advertising in China

Source: James N. Joyner Papers (Manuscript Collection #429)

Staff Person: Lynette Lundin

Description:

James N. Joyner (1888-1972), attended the University of North Carolina and graduated in 1910. He was employed  by the British-American Tobacco Company (B.A.T.) in China from 1912 to 1935, returned to North Carolina to manage the family farm at LaGrange, and died at the age of 83.  His papers reveal many aspects of the operations of the B.A.T. Company and the social life during the 1920’s and 1930’s.

This is a photograph of a group of people advertising tobacco products during his time in China.

William Woods Holden Election Handbill

Source: Benjamin B. Winborne Papers #691-005, East Carolina Manuscript Collection

Staff Person: Dale Sauter

Description:

Today’s staff pick features an original handbill (circa 1868) promoting the election of William Woods Holden for Governor and Tod Robinson Caldwell for the first ever position of Lieutenant Governor in North Carolina.  They were both elected to office.  Holden (1818-1892) was the only Chief Executive in North Carolina history to be impeached and removed from office (and the first in the nation to endure that indignity.)  Holden was posthumously and unanimously pardoned by the North Carolina Senate in 2011.

"The Eclipse" Steam Engine

Source:  Hunter-Wills Family Papers (#237) East Carolina Manuscript Collection

Staff Person:  Dale Sauter

Description:

Described as “The ‘Eclipse’ on Wheels, this portable steam engine was produced by Frick & Co. of Waynesboro, PA.  It is described as “especially adapted for threshing grain, sawing wood and lumber, ginning cotton, and whenever it is necessary to move from place to place.”  The image comes from a circa 1878 Frick & Co. catalog.  The entire catalog can be found at the following link:

http://digital.lib.ecu.edu/13844

This catalog, and other similar catalogs, can be found in the Hunter-Wills Family Papers, collection number 237.

Pungent Paragraphs from the New Louisburg College

Source: Thomas A. Person Papers, Manuscript Collection #303

Staff Person: Maury York

Description:

This promotional brochure describes changes that were taking place at Louisburg College in Louisburg, N.C. The college had opened in 1857 to educate young women. A fire in 1928 seriously damaged the handsome Greek Revival Main Building, and the Great Depression curtailed enrollment, causing the college to incur significant debt. In response to this crisis, in 1931 the college admitted young men for the first time. Enrollment increased significantly. In this optimistic description of the “new” college, Isabelle Ziegler, a teacher of foreign languages, offered her view of the spirit of the institution: “Spirit at Louisburg College is that Something which with one gusty effort has blown away forever all the dust and death of the ages and has filled the lungs of this old College with the clear, cold, glorious atmosphere of the heights, which has given these two hundred young men and women the mental, spiritual and physical energy to seize this old world and carry it on their shoulders with Homeric laughter to the very heights.”

1956 GMC Work Trucks Foldout Brochure Poster

Source: Barbour Boat Works, Inc. Records, 1943-1998, East Carolina Manuscript Collection #758

Staff Person: Dale Sauter

Description:

General Motors Corporation (GMC) has flourished throughout much of its history as a major American automobile manufacturer. Considered “one of the big three,” alongside Ford and Chrysler, GMC was created in 1908. The great Wall Street crash in 1929 put a quick halt to all expansion plans for GMC, as its stock price quickly fell. In 1930, GMC bought Electro-Motive Corporation, the internal combustion engine railcar builder. For several years to come, GMC-powered diesel locomotives were heavily used on American railroads. During the early 1930’s GMC continued its recovery and bought the Yellow Coach Bus Company. In 1955 GMC became the first company to make more than a billion dollars in one year. At one time GMC was also the largest corporation in the United States and the single largest employer in the world. However, in 2005 GMC posted a loss of $4 billion, laid off approximately 30,000 employees, and closed 12 plants. GMC largely flourished as a company for nearly a century before officially declaring bankruptcy in June 2009.

Source: http://ezinearticles.com/?The-History-of-GM—General-Motors&id=110696

Today’s staff pick offers a glimpse into the golden age of GMC. This is a foldout brochure poster advertising GMC’s line of work trucks for 1956. The brochure was sent from Craven Motor Co., Inc. in New Bern, N.C. to Barbour Boat Works (also in New Bern).

For more information on the Barbour Boat Works Records or any other collections we hold, please contact us for further details.

1956 GMC work trucks foldout brochure poster

1956 GMC work trucks foldout brochure poster

1956 GMC work trucks foldout brochure poster

1956 GMC work trucks foldout brochure poster

Barbour Boat Works, Inc.

Source: Barbour Boat Works, Inc. Records, 1943-1998, undated, East Carolina Manuscript Collection #758

Staff Person: Dale Sauter

Description:

One collection that has lately proven quite popular with researchers is the Barbour Boat Works Inc. Records. Many of the requests we have received are from owners of an original Barbour boat who, with plans of restoring them, are seeking the original plan drawings.

Barbour Boat Works Inc. was founded by Herbert William Barbour in 1932 on the Trent River at New Bern, North Carolina, and remained in business until the mid-1990s. During its long history the company built a large variety of vessels for a variety of purchasers, both military and civilian. These records also offer valuable information through such other materials as correspondence, contracts, manuals, photographs, and brochures. The featured image comes from the cover of an undated sales brochure.

Cover of sales brochure from the Barbour Boat Works, Inc. Records.

Cover of sales brochure from the Barbour Boat Works, Inc. Records.

Post Card of the movie "Pitch a Boogie Woogie"

Source: John W. Warner Papers, 1947-1986, East Carolina Manuscript Collection #519

Staff Person: Martha Elmore

Description:

“Pitch a Boogie Woogie” was the first movie made by a North Carolina-based production company. It featured an all-African American cast of mostly Greenville, N.C., performers and was released in 1948 by Lord-Warner Pictures, Inc. Though successful in North and South Carolina theatres, it was never shown outside that area. In 1986, East Carolina University Professor of English Alex Albright rediscovered the movie, which led to television exposure on PBS, an exhibit at the Greenville Museum of Art and a proclamation by N.C. Governor James Martin of “Pitch a Boogie Woogie Week.” Among actors in the movie who were still living in the area in 1986 was Beatrice Atkinson, an employee of Joyner Library at East Carolina University. Researchers interested in material concerning “Pitch a Boogie Woogie” will also want to look at the Boogie in Black and White Documentary Collection #1086.

Lord-Warner Pictures, Inc. presents Pitch a Boogie Woogie

Lord-Warner Pictures, Inc. presents Pitch a Boogie Woogie

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Improved Jordan Grits Separator

Source: F. Rehm & Sons Company Records, East Carolina Manuscript Collection #469

The improved Jordan grits separator.

The improved Jordan grits separator.

Staff Person: Dale Sauter

Description:
This sales brochure dates from January 1915 and advertises “The Improved Jordan Grits Separator.” This item can be found in the F. Rhem & Sons Company Records.

Records include correspondence, legal and financial papers, estate papers, receipts, financial records, surveys, newspaper clippings, photographs, bills of lading, genealogy, stock certificates, corporation minutes, and land records.

Furnifold Rhem, Sr. (1820-1888), founder of the F. Rhem Co., was the son of Jacob and Signey Fonville Gooding Rhem of Craven County, N.C. He moved to Williamsburg/Georgetown Counties, S.C., in 1846. His wife, Laura A. Cook, was the daughter of John and Louise Humprey Cook, also of North Carolina. Their two sons, Durward Dudley (1862-1922) and Furnifold, Jr. (1864-1918), joined their father in the businesses, which, in April 1886, became F. Rhem & Sons Company.

After F. Rhem, Sr.’s, death in 1888, responsibility for the company’s management was assumed by his sons. Before his death, however, he had established the foundation for the diversified businesses which subsequently included the production and sale of cotton, naval stores, turpentine, the Black River and Mingo Steamboat Co., Rhem Real Estate Co., Rhem Dock & Terminal Co., Rhem Timber and Land Co., and the Rhem Shingle Co.

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