Item #17663 The “Wear-Ever” New Method of Cooking. Advertising.
The “Wear-Ever” New Method of Cooking.
The “Wear-Ever” New Method of Cooking.
The “Wear-Ever” New Method of Cooking.
The “Wear-Ever” New Method of Cooking.
The “Wear-Ever” New Method of Cooking.
The “Wear-Ever” New Method of Cooking.

The “Wear-Ever” New Method of Cooking.

New Kensington, Pennsylvania: The Aluminum Cooking Utensil Company, 1930. An early example of a Wear-Ever catalogue. Seemingly the earliest Wear-Ever catalogue recorded on OCLC, Healthful Foods: The New Method of Cooking, dates from 1925 or 1926. OCLC records four copies of that catalogue and a handful of copies of The “Wear-Ever” New Method of Cooking and 100 Tested Recipes from the Priscilla Proving Plant (1928 and 1929 editions). OCLC records only one other copy of the present edition (University of Pittsburgh). Note that the earliest Wear-Ever promotional material recorded on OCLC seems to be a 1910 instructional booklet for their steam cooker, though that appears to be a smaller promotional item rather than a full catalogue. Illustrated throughout, often in color, with Wear-Ever pots and pans, food, and images of families. Last two pages with the heading “Homes Using the ‘Wear-Ever’ New Method of Cooking” and space for names and addresses. Some soiling to title-page. Some browning to last two leaves (due to paper quality). Otherwise, very clean throughout. With two leaves illustrated with Wear-Ever items (seemingly taken from another catalogue) laid in. A very good copy of a scarce item. Black faux leather binder. 11 x 8 ." 71 ff., printed on one side only. Item #17663

This catalogue was designed for use by sales agents who marketed Wear-Ever cookware in their communities. A later Wear-Ever catalogue from 1955 was clearly intended to be used by saleswomen exclusively, and typically at home parties where women gathered to purchase home goods, though the present item seems to be targeting both men and women as sales agents. The present item predates that home party trend, which truly gained momentum when Tupperware saleswoman Brownie Wise (1913 – 1992) proved the success of the method in the late 1940s. Beauty products and home goods had been sold by women in women’s homes for decades, particularly in the Black haircare industry, but Wise’s massive success (on the scale of $1.7 million in today’s dollars) demonstrated the economic viability of the home party method. After World War II, home goods companies like Tupperware and Wear-Ever, as well as beauty companies like Avon, rushed to harness the marketing potential of middle-class women who had both the disposable income to invest in home products and the social connections to market them. Those saleswomen were able to use their role to build social capital and, in some cases, make money in an era when women’s employment opportunities were restricted. These midcentury companies laid the groundwork for today’s multilevel marketing industry and codified a type of word-of-mouth marketing style that mobilizes consumers as advertisers and underlies modern online advertising strategies.

Price: $350.00

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