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that's ME...the last Sun-Maid Raisin Girl
The story and events ~
The TRUE short story of how this all came about...that I'm featured on the Sun-Maid Raisin Box since 1970.
When people learn about me and this image...they say, "Wow you are famous!" and I reply, no I'm not famous but the image is world renowned. I'm not known as the first Sun-Maid raisin girl from 1915...however, I am the 1970 updated published version. This is just something that came into my path many years ago, and no matter what, I can proudly say, "Yes, that Is Me" on the box now.
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Being featured on the Sun-Maid Raisin Box
a look into the past...
Around 1960-61 I worked for Fiberboard Paper Products in San Francisco. One day I was called to the art department, and because I had an interest in getting into the art department, I thought they wanted to find out about my art interests...so I went.
The artist asked me for a favor, and that was to hold a tray so he could draw my hands...thinking nothing of this since I was a freelance model. I volunteered and held the tray...the artist sketched the image and was telling me about the changes being made to the Sun-Maid image and the package. They were modernizing it, "more importantly, it was to be kept with the same recognizable pose."
Some of my co-workers started calling me the raisin-gal...I thought it was funny. So when I went back to the art department, I saw the painting, and to my surprise it looked like me!
After leaving Fiberboard to pursue my Modeling, I never saw the image for years. Then one day in 1970 my mother called and said, I was at the store and saw the Sun-Maid package and your picture was on it! Well of course I had to go buy a box.
I like buying this size
For years I had talked about it, wondering if the Sun-Maid company knew about me. So when I got a computer I emailed them, asking if they knew about me. All I got back was a reply saying, "thank you for offering to pose for the box, we have an image that will be there for a while!" I actually had to laugh!
In 1999 the local newspaper did a story on the Sun-Maid image and me, this from the result of an article about collecting SM items. I had asked not to publish their answer to me, but instead it was published.
The local reporter contacted me in regards of this question and answer, asking to do a story. I said no, but she responded it would be a short article and interesting. When the reporter called the SM Company they replied that no one there ever heard of me. Now that made me feel foolish, Why on earth would I claim such a thing? Being made to feel like I was making up a story, I felt very unsettled. Determined to get things straightened out, I contacted Sun-Maid Growers of California and told them my story, they replied with a call and some mail information for my curiosity.
As time went by we did phone tags and emails, then one day I was invited to Kingsburg (near Fresno) to meet with the President of the company. My husband and I made the journey February 2006, we had a wonderful meeting and after much research they welcomed me as the image on the box.
It's a good feeling to know I have resolved something I thought and talked about for many years...it's a good thing to have closure.
Although the image has changed with the times, the Sun-Maid trademark design has always been based on the original pose by Lorraine Collett Petersen 1915.
SunMaid products - try all of those wonderful flavored Raisins, especially the Chocolate covered ones, all at Amazon
I love these old fashion recipes
My husband Al, Gary Marshburn, me, Company President Barry Kriebel...
Yep, my favorite ;-)
Sharing a short story about an old box...
What a nice thing to do...
Several years ago we drove back to California for a vacation. Then on our way back we stopped in a small mining town in Colorado, visiting an Antique shop...there I found an old Sun-Maid raisin box that for many years I have been looking for. This box had the image of Ms.Peterson from a long time ago... asking how much the small box was, I was informed it was Not For Sale, just on display...I told him the story of how I looked for this image before mine was on the box. I requested, if he ever finds another one to let me know.
About a year later I received a small package, in it was the box I had looked at in the Colorado Antique Store, with a note inside explaining, "this really belongs to you." I was so thrilled with this kind gesture, not even knowing this man...so indeed I am very grateful to him for this gift.
What a nice thing to do!
Girl on a Calendar
Violet Oliver (Geissinger) story, incuding her baseball star husband Earl Whitehill
A nice gentleman named Gary Neveln contacted me on Facebook, he is related as a distant cousin to the baseball player Earl Whitehill who married the Sunmaid Girl on the calendar, Violet Oliver (Geissinger)
He sent me the following link to the story of Earl and Violet.
More here as well...
Ads and Posters of the Past - Featuring Sun-Maid maidensClick thumbnail to view full-size
Here are Art Versions - of the maidenClick thumbnail to view full-size
My Personal Collection - of SM itemsClick thumbnail to view full-size
My Sun-Maid finds... - Vehicle BanksClick thumbnail to view full-size
Items out there I'd like for my collection:
Let me know if you run across items with my image on it... like a lunch box, dolls, postcards, or any other unusual items that are reasonably priced.....Please contact me.
Was this lens on Sun-Maid helpful to you?
The Original Sun-Maid Girl 1915
Blast from the Past ~ Funny or Fun to look at!Click thumbnail to view full-size
Older Modeling ads and photo - Libby's Fruit Cocktail and My Hand
One of my first commercial modeling
For many, many years I looked for this Libby's Fruit Cocktail ad. When I posed for this ad my age was around 13 and living in San Francisco. This memory will always stay with me, because coming home on a streetcar I started to feel faint and almost passed out, when a woman saw me and asked if I needed help. She actually got off with me, which was the regular stop in front of our apartment...she helped me to the door and then got back on, all the while the streetcar driver waited...I'll never forget that!
I actually found this ad in a Wisconsin Antique Store...does that mean I'm an antique?
Northern California New Homes Magazine - on the cover
My first child was just born when I modeled for this...Northern California New Homes assignments were one of my favorite places to model, I had done quite a few for them. I enjoyed working with the photographer DelCarlo from San Jose "DelCarlo Photography"
New Homes - another one for the California Magazine
Images of my earlier modeling days
some good ~ some bad
I modeled off and on since childhood and some of these photos now seem a bit weird to look at, the hair and the cloths...interestingly enough it's all coming back, but not for me! Been there done that!
I wish I had all my modeling photo composites, but I lost them over the years from moving so many times.
Some of the photos on the right are just a few that bring back memories modeling years ago. Maybe I will get the courage to post more in the near future.
A Blast from the Past are the funny ones...
100th Anniversary Recipe Book
Download a FREE E-reader or a PDF book Sun-Maid Anniversary eBook download
The 100th Anniversary Book pertains to history of the Sun-Maid, also answers to all your questions about the growing, producing and the marketing of raisins and dried fruits.
they use to advertise in books a great deal...but then they didn't have the electronics to advertise so it's neat to see these old ads
Sunmaiden Commercial Controversy?
Because of the re-energized controversy about the Sun-Maid Raisin girl in the commercials, I have had inquiries about the image change...quite frankly I would not know of a change, the only change I'm aware of is the Hollywood-tized maiden selling grapes in a commercial. Unfortunately there are some people out there that don't like the change...I find it interesting since the commercials have been out for a couple of years (see below April 23, 2006).
When a new commercial was released this controversy started again. Personally I think it's just a meaningless argument and more about opinions. There are those that have a problem with an identifiable product image and change, be it Coca-Cola or any other identifiable product.
I think the girl in the commercial is cute although a bit Julia Roberts, but hey, it's a new image of an old gal (oops that would be me!)
What bothers me more then anything else, is when someone makes a comment that is downright rude, crude and vulgar...really, there's no need for that, after all it's an animated image! There are way too many problems in the world that need to be taken care of and worried about then have a controversy about the Sun-Maid image. The good thing that will come out of this controversy, is that Sun-Maid will be selling a lot more products.
OK, I'll stop with the sermon...all this is just my opinion.
An Interesting History of some of the Sunmaidens
- Sun-Maid Girl history
The Sun-Maid girl trademark was inspired by a real person - Lorraine Collett Petersen, who in 1915 lived in the Fresno,
What you are is God's gift to you, what you do with yourself is your gift to God: Danish Proverb
My personal stories and writings, including my images are protected by the Copyrights Law....All Rights Reserved: Delia Pacheco