February 16, 2007
This is “Our Past Is Present” from the Geary County Historical Society. Since before the turn of the 20th century, clearance sales have brought excitement in the dreary days of winter for Junction City shoppers, and 1949 was no exception. 67 years ago the newspapers were filled with ads proclaiming the bargains to be found in our town during the first weeks of February. You may be surprised at some of the prices of items, which could have been purchased in 1949. Here are some examples:
Waters Appliance department was featuring a Maytag Chieftain washer for $124.95 and Durland Furniture advertised occasional rockers for $16.66 and genuine walnut lamp tables for $8.66.
The clothing stores' ads were really enticing. Hood and Spencer was offering men’s dress suits for $21.95 to $42.95, leather jackets from $5.95 to $15.00, neckties were 3 for $1.00 and socks were 2 pair for 29 cents. The ladies also found bargains such as - Wash Dresses at Townsend’s from $1.88 to $5.88 while Cole’s offered a Justin-McCarty polka dot rayon crepe from $22.50.
LaShelle’s Shoes was promoting a new mid-high heel in blue or green calf for $10.95. Used car prices ranged from $200.00 for a 1936 Pontiac to $1,625.00 for a 1948 Ford while a new Hudson, “The only car you step down into, was advertised for $2,402.83.
A large ad introducing a new flour, “Silver Mist” manufactured for Shellaberger’s of Salina covered half a page in the newspaper. This new “Silver Mist” flour was bleached, enriched with phosphate, and in a convenient shelf-rite box and the advertisement listed 22 local grocery stores carrying the product.