Bell & Howell Co., est. 1907

Museum Artifacts: Bell & Howell 8mm Magazine Movie Camera 172 (c. 1950), Filmo Auto Load 16mm Movie Camera (1940s), and Filmosound 179 16mm Film Projector (1940s)

Made By: Bell & Howell Co., 1801 W. Larchmont Ave., Chicago, IL

“When you buy a roll of film, it is worth just what you pay for it, and no more. But, once it has gone through your camera,

Republic Molding Corp., est. 1946

Museum Artifact: Polly Flex Tumblers / Plastic Cups, c. 1950s

Made By: Republic Molding Corporation, 6465 N. Avondale Ave., Chicago, IL

Research is underway on this one and a full write-up will be coming soon.

The Harmony Company, est. 1892

Museum Artifact: Roy Smeck Soprano Ukulele, c. 1950s

Made By: The Harmony Company, 3633 S. Racine Ave., Chicago, IL

For about 80 years, Chicago’s Harmony Company consistently ranked among the largest producers of stringed instruments in the world. Unfortunately, when we’re talking about “the arts,” such a legacy of quantity can often presume a deficiency in quality—warranted or not.

Kellogg Switchboard & Supply Co., est. 1897

Museum Artifact: Kellogg Redbar 1000 Series Masterphone, 1952

Made By: Kellogg Switchboard & Supply Co., 6650 S. Cicero Ave., Chicago, IL

Widely promoted during the Kellogg Switchboard & Supply Company’s 50th anniversary in 1947, the 1000 Series “Redbar” Masterphone—like the one in our collection—is a bit of a postwar icon. It might not have the rich oak exterior of an early box phone or the brass shimmer of an old candlestick model,

Oh Henry! and the Williamson Candy Co., est. 1917

Museum Artifact: Oh Henry! Candy Bar Box, c. 1950s

Made By: Williamson Candy Company, 4701 W. Armitage Ave., Chicago, IL

Introduced by the Williamson Candy Co. in 1920, the Oh Henry! was the first of Chicago’s holy trinity of chocolate/peanut/caramel candy bars, pre-dating the Baby Ruth (Curtiss Candy Co.) by a year* and Snickers (Mars, Inc.) by a decade.

Chicago Screw Company, est. 1872

Museum Artifact: Computer for Heat-Treated Hexagon Head Cap Screws, 1957

Made for: The Chicago Screw Company, div. of Standard Screw Co., Bellwood, IL

Research is underway on this one and a full write-up will be coming soon.

Rock-Ola MFG Corp., est. 1927

Museum Artifact: Rock-Ola Hi-Fidelity 120 Wall Box, 1953

Made By: Rock-Ola Manufacturing Corp., 800 North Kedzie Avenue, Chicago, IL

It’s one of the quintessential brand names of American pop culture. Rock-Ola—a word that celebrates and encapsulates both the rock n’ roll explosion of the jukebox’s 1950s golden age and the historic roots of the classic “Victrola” talking machines.

Do-Ray Lamp Co., est. 1920

Museum Artifact: Tiger-Ey No. 100-0 Plastic Truck Reflector, c. 1950s

Made by: Do-Ray Lamp Company, 1458 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL

Research is underway on this one and a full write-up will be coming soon.

Bowman Dairy Company, est. 1874

Museum Artifact: Bowman Cottage Cheese container, c. 1950s

Made By: Bowman Dairy Company, 140 W. Ontario Street, Chicago, IL + Numerous plant locations

Research is underway on this one and a full write-up will be coming soon.

Thor Power Tool Co. & Speedway MFG Co., est. 1886

Museum Artifact: Thor Speed Drill, type 201, c. 1956

Made By: Speedway Manufacturing Co. (division of Thor Power Tool Co.), 1834-1875 S. 52nd Ave. (Laramie Ave.)., Cicero, IL

Research is underway on this one and a full write-up will be coming soon.

Dormeyer Corporation, est. 1929

Museum Artifact: Dormeyer Orbital Electric Sander, c. 1950s

Made By: The Dormeyer Corp. (Power Tools Division), 700 North Kingsbury St., Chicago, IL

Research is underway on this one and a full write-up will be coming soon.

Rival Packing Co., est. 1923

Museum Artifact: Rival Dog Food Coin Banks, 1950s

Made By: Rival Packing Co., 4500 S. Tripp Ave., Chicago, IL

Gimme Ri-val Dog Food, Arf Arf, Arf Arf!
Gimme Ri-val Dog Food, Woof Woof, Woof Woof!
Your Dog’s Eyes Will Shine—Coat Look Fine
On Nourishing Ri-val Dog Food,

Webster-Chicago Corp., est. 1914

Museum Artifact: Webster “Electronic Memory” Wire Recorder, Model 180-1, c. 1949

Made By: Webster-Chicago Corp., aka WebCor, 5622 W. Bloomingdale Ave., Chicago, IL

If you’ve ever heard your own voice on a recording and instantly recoiled at the sound, then you can attest to one of the quirkier phenomenons in the modern human experience: uncomfortable audible disembodiment. Sure, you might think you merely hate the reedy reality of your recorded words vs.

Reliable Paste Company, est. 1917

Museum Artifact: Reliable Cold Water Wall Size Paste, c. 1950s

Made By: Reliable Paste Company, 3560 S. Shields Ave., Chicago, IL

Research is underway on this one and a full write-up will be coming soon.

Card Shuffler by Nestor Johnson MFG Co., 1951

Nestor Johnson MFG Co., 1900 N. Springfield Ave., Chicago, IL

Skillfully shuffling a deck of cards, much like stoically smoking a pack of cigarettes, was a universal method of establishing one’s coolness in 1950s America. The risks of the manual shuffle, however—much like the cigarette smoking—were numerous and potentially deadly. And I’m not just talking about the carpal tunnel and paper cuts. If an amateur card shark failed to evenly redistribute his hearts and clubs,

Curtiss Candy Co., est. 1916

Museum Artifact: Baby Ruth Display Box, c. 1950s

Made By: Curtiss Candy Company, 337 E. Illinois St., Chicago, IL

“There was never a crack in the integrity of Otto Schnering.”

In 1953—right around the same time the vintage Baby Ruth display box in our collection was made—radio host and author Henry J. Taylor went on the air and delivered a stirring speech / eulogy for the man they used to call the “Candy Bar King.” Taylor was a former business associate and longtime friend of Otto Schnering,