Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » Games I Hope We Never See Again, 1949

Games I Hope We Never See Again, 1949

By: Ardis E. Parshall - September 11, 2009

Like all the church magazines, The Children’s Friend published advertisements for some or all of its career. You might find a surprise from time to time — like this 1926 ad for lead paint (in a children’s magazine!) — but for the most part the ads are what you’d expect: Beneficial Life often took the back cover, Deseret Book and the Deseret News took slots, as did Z.C.M.I., Sears, and Auerbach’s department stores, and other local (Salt Lake City) businesses.

All of those advertisers were regular supporters of The Children’s Friend in 1949. So were Daynes Jewelers, and Vogeler’s, which seems to have been a local feed-and-seed store. Nothing unexpected there. What did surprise me, though, were these “games” that appeared in several issues of the magazine that year, mixed in with the stories, riddles, and connect-the-dot puzzles:



Is it just me?



  1. Oh no. No… it’s not just you Ardis! Yikes…

    Comment by Tracy M — September 11, 2009 @ 7:35 am

  2. Wow! I guess you have to find out how well the ads stuck in the children’s minds.

    Comment by Steve C. — September 11, 2009 @ 7:54 am

  3. – Father! Father! Shan’t we patronize the Morton-Sopworth & Sons Insurance House? I truly would not want to go without shoes and food if something untoward were to happen to you, Father.

    – Hohoho, I see you’ve been reading your Friend! Of course I shall purchase a policy from Morton-Sopworth & Sons.

    Comment by Bro. Jones — September 11, 2009 @ 8:19 am

  4. It’s always such fun trying to imagine what is in those big white spaces my workplace substitutes for the scanned photos…. especially with “Yikes” and “Wow”.

    Comment by Coffinberry — September 11, 2009 @ 8:37 am

  5. Do the quizes always reward correct answers with three points?

    Comment by Peter LLC — September 11, 2009 @ 8:56 am

  6. Thank you for fixing my typo. 😉

    Comment by Tracy M — September 11, 2009 @ 9:15 am

  7. You’ve got to get that add revenue somehow! At least they weren’t adds for candy (they weren’t were they?).

    Comment by J. Stapley — September 11, 2009 @ 9:30 am

  8. First one
    3. Vogelers
    4. Sears
    7. Deseret Book

    Second One
    10. Beneficial

    These may be your hardest puzzles yet… 🙂

    Comment by Matt W. — September 11, 2009 @ 9:39 am

  9. 6. Daynes Jewelry. Wait! They’ve got me doing it now too! I’ve been brainwashed!

    Comment by kevinf — September 11, 2009 @ 10:05 am

  10. Unless you count U&I Sugar, the ads weren’t especially pitched to children (although my version of Bro. Jones scenario is that some child asks her father if they have a Beneficial policy, is told no, doesn’t explain why she asked, and lies in bed at night worrying about food and shoes). The one exception I noticed, pitched directly to children, was an Auerbach’s ad to have your own photo used as the face of a paper doll, and the “quiz” that month asked the kids how many outfits came with their personalized doll (18).

    Peter, I can read your mind. You’re thinkin’ that the answers are really worth 4 points, aren’t you? Matt W. would support you there, I think.

    The other day “Th.” mentioned that he couldn’t see my Photobucket-posted images at his workplace, and Coffinberry can’t see them either. Can anybody whose workplace restricts my images suggest another *free* site where I could post photos for use on Keepa, that would allow you to see them?

    Tracy, anything for you!

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — September 11, 2009 @ 10:05 am

  11. Ha, Matt and kevinf! I’m slow sometimes and didn’t think about you swifties trying to actually solve these puzzles! I’ll go back to the magazines on Monday (sorry, can’t do it before then) and sort through the ads to find the solutions, so you can all start sleeping at night again.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — September 11, 2009 @ 10:32 am

  12. 1. Deseret News
    8. Beneficial Life

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — September 11, 2009 @ 10:56 am

  13. FYI
    My cousin works for Beneficial Life. He told me they are no longer accepting new policies. This is not planned to be temporary.

    Comment by Bruce Crow — September 11, 2009 @ 11:13 am

  14. I guess I’m missing something.

    Yes, it’s a little surprise that The Children’s Friend would call such explicit attention to the advertisements, but on the other hand, I don’t view it as much different than the typical “Please support our sponsors” that we see everywhere. It’s just the magazine’s way of ensuring future ad revenues.

    I must be missing something.

    Comment by Hunter — September 11, 2009 @ 11:58 am

  15. I remember this announcement a few months ago, Bruce — that’s quite a change for the company that has been so closely identified with the church for so long.

    You aren’t missing anything, Hunter; I guess it just doesn’t strike you as hard as it did me. What seemed most off-kilter to me was not that kids were being motivated (manipulated?) into close examination of the ads, but that the magazine appears to be giving editorial endorsement to the claims of advertisers — not “Who wants you to try their X services?” but “Who is the best at business X?” We usually try to teach kids more critical consumer skills now, I think. I hope.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — September 11, 2009 @ 12:46 pm

  16. Have you seen The Christmas Story? Somehow these old games make me think of Ralphie trying to solve to code so he could get his BB gun.

    Comment by Michelle Glauser — September 12, 2009 @ 1:52 pm

  17. “What seemed most off-kilter to me was . . . that the magazine appears to be giving editorial endorsement to the claims of advertisers”

    Yeah, you’re right — these games constitute quite a bit more than simply saying “support our sponsors.” Good point.

    Comment by Hunter — September 12, 2009 @ 10:27 pm