Stretching the Truth

0

March 2, 2015 Dick Sheaff

by Dick Sheaff

Exaggeration abounded in mid- to late-nineteenth century imagery, for comic effect and/or to emphasize product features. One oft-repeated graphic, in numerous variations, showed a pair of pants resisting mighty efforts to pull it apart. This may have originated with Levi Strauss, who used that visual to sell its new, tough canvas denim jeans, which the company created originally with California gold miners in mind.

Below are a few more . . . if any readers have others, I will be happy to add them to this post (send images/scans, of decent resolution, to dicksheaff@cox.net).

 

LeviStraussStretched150(Image courtesy of ESA Board member Glenn Mason)

SweetOrrPantaloons150

RockfordOverAlls150

CookPantaloons150 AnniversaryCard150

 

There were also other exaggeration images demonstrating the toughness of a pair of pants:

connableoveralls150_med

 

 

And there were images featuring other sorts of stretching:

CableScrewBrooklynBridge150

 

 

Finally, having nothing to do with stretching (other than stretching the borders of corniness), here is another pants-related piece of printed ephemera, from the early 20th century . . .

Johnson-Pants150


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