4/6/16

Ads #83: Money


It's interesting to have a look at credit card advertisements from a time when we were all pretty naive about the whole business.  What started as a diners club card became a way of life for Americans just a couple decades later.

So, here's some credit card and a few other money related ads, back before guys like Samuel L. Jackson and Alec Baldwin were telling us to go into debt.

1973
Completely run out of money remodeling your house? Don't worry, you can charge it, and it'll all be okay.

1969
Back when Capitalism wasn't a dirty word.

1978
1978
You can almost hear the air being blown into the credit bubble.  It would be a couple decades before it would burst.... and truthfully, with student loans, a government trillions in debt, etc.  I think the credit bubble has yet to fully explode.... it's just been leaking a little.

1972
Ah yes.  It feels good to put the family vacation on credit.  That won't come back to haunt you.


The good ol' days, when you had to always worry about having enough cash on hand.  Credit cards and ATM's were nonexistent, so not being able to come up with enough dough at the register was a common stress.

1974
So, swingers are to blame for this mess.  I should have known.

1967
Kind of a sad advertisement, really.  Dad is dead, the kids are fatherless, and it's up to mom to learn about all this money business.

1968
1968

1972
"Just think of it as money."  Sound financial advice, I think.

1971
Correct me if I'm wrong, but it looks like Arizona Bank is bragging about being founded by "the greatest single handed eradicator of undesirable citizens the Southwest has ever known."  Sounds badass, but who were these undesirables that the Arizona Bank founder was murdering?  And why is there a random shaman in their ad?

1971
Behold the future of credit cards - your charming mug is on the back!  Nobody's gonna steal Betty Howard's credit card.



6 comments:

  1. So sadly our widow from 1967, as good a "businessman" as she is, isn't going to find work at A.M.P. because evidently she just isn't made of the right stuff to become "An AMP man".

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  2. I got my first credit card in 1977, an American Express, after repeatedly being turned down by MasterCard and Visa. I got something in the mail urging me, the busy executive business man (I was in fact, a low level engineer) an American Express card for $20/year. Thinking no way they'd give me a card I sent it in. And, just like that, I had a credit card. That summer a bunch of friends and I took a cross-country trip in a rented van. That AE card enabled me to rent the van. It also enabled me to eventually get a Visa which enabled me to dump the AE card and it's $20 fee.

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  3. My father (born 1925, died 1993) never carried a credit card...or a checkbook...or even a wallet. He just had a few bills rubberbanded together...and a comb in his pocket.

    Makes me wonder if he'd lived longer, whether he would have eventually bit the bullet and carried a credit card. God knows that my mother (born 1931) still won't carry a cellphone.

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  4. I wish they'd change their names back to Mastercharge and BankAmericard.

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  5. Just the other day I was explaining to one of my kids the early days of credit cards. How they were a novelty at first and that generally only wealthy people had them. Also the fact that every store had their own credit card - all different sizes and shapes. But what really fascinated her was when I described the process - no swiping. No, no, the merchant had this clunky press where he'd put the card along with the bill (carbon copied). Then you'd get the bill in the mail and pay by check. My daughter probably thought I grew up in the stone age.

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    Replies
    1. If I remember correctly, back in the early days of credit cards, the merchants would have a book with the numbers of all of the invalid credit cards. The merchant would check the book to make sure that your card wasn't a stolen or canceled one. I'm curious how often those books were updated.

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