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Some 1930s Cleaning Magic

Updated on July 22, 2013
Transforming lives and walls everywhere!
Transforming lives and walls everywhere!

Mr. Clean Has Never Seen A Wall Like This

The Puro Company had some exciting cleaning items for you back in the 1930s - things that would transform you life and your living surfaces. I discovered them all because I was sitting here at my desk wondering whether there were "magic sponges" years ago, back in the retro mid-20th century era I like delving into. I'd just cleaned up the stove with a magic sponge, so they were on my mind.

I really like those Mr. Clean magic sponges, you know the ones I mean. They're white (at first) and look sort of like styrofoam rectangles. You run them under the tap and then go to town cleaning up counters and sinks and just about anything around that looks lousy and dirty. Now I really do not like cleaning that much. I'd rather be reading a book or going for a run or - anything else, really. On the other hand, it's nice not to live in total squalor.

So there you go.

Anyway, no matter how great the powers of a magical sponge, I will never look like this 1930s lady who is cleaning - my goodness, how did she let the wall get like that, do you think?

A Mystery Tablet that moths really do not like. But you probably will. What's in this thing, anyway?
A Mystery Tablet that moths really do not like. But you probably will. What's in this thing, anyway?

A Tablet More Mysterious Than the Rosetta Stone!

That happy lady up there is going to be awhile magic-sponging the wall. Because that is the dirtiest wall I have ever seen. It might go a little quicker if she turned around to see what she was doing, of course.

But once she finishes that, she might want to use something else I found from the 1930s Puro Line. It is (not surprisingly) called Puro, and like the sponge, it is magic. And full of a Mystery Perfume that will freshen the air and kill moths all at once. "Harmless to human beings," says the ad - but they aren't going to tell us what's in it. Now, in the 1940s and 50s the Puro Company made Moth-O-Matic "pellets, flakes and solid blocks" out of naphthalene and paradichlorbenzene - typical moth ball stuff, in other words. Highly toxic, too, if you breathed them in in an enclosed space, or ingested them.

I think we'd better stick to the sponges after all. And if the wall looks like that, we'll be needing a caseload of them for the floors.


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      brspiritus 6 years ago

      I suppose with B&W ads they had to show a remarkable contrast between the clean and dirty. Also of note is my parents bought a house in '79 when I was kid, place was built in 1847 and had the original wallpaper. You wouldn't believe how dirty the walls were from burning kerosene lamps, coal stoves and ultimately, open flame gaslights through the years.