Rare Book Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - December - 2012 Issue

Manuscript, Printed and Visual Americana from Ian Brabner, Bookseller


How best to dry your clothes, lubricate your Studebaker.

We've seen many wonderful new inventions appear, only to become outdated as even better new products were developed. Things like tape players, pagers, and fax machines were once the rage. Here is an earlier one - the White Wire Clothes Line. The Hudson River Wire Works' new clothesline was a coated wire that will “never break or soil the clothes, never have to be taken down...” As the cartoon on this page shows, old rope clotheslines could lead to a washing day disaster. Item 79. $45.

Speaking of staying clean, you probably thought greasing your car was a dirty job. Not with Alemite Automobile Lubricants and Lubricating Systems. Item 18 offers the photographs needed to prove it. Here we see a comely young lady, dressed in very nice travel attire, oiling her circa 1930 Studebaker by herself with some sort of squeezing device provided by Alemite. Alemite was founded in 1918, and is still in business selling lubricants. $100.

Ian Brabner, Bookseller, may be reached at 302-998-2886 or ian@ibrarebooks.com. The website is www.ibrarebooks.com.

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