we’ve come a long way baby – not

Check out the language in this 17 August 1930 Sunday Mail item.

“Ironing is quite pleasant work”.

Who wrote this?

“These labour-saving hints will be welcome to many little housewives

But we’ve come a long way haven’t we.  Fast forward 80 years or so.

The promotion included this:

“Give the wife, girlfriend or partner a rest tomorrow night, because the Carlton Draught girls will be in to do your laundry (well your ironing anyway)”.

There are no words fit to print.

quite pleasant - ironing

Carlton Beer ad


On deodorants and superfluous hair

The Women’s Department of The Queenslander – 6 December 1919 attracted advertisements that could have dented the self-esteem of any modern woman.  With the exception of a request from the Mitchell Library for the diaries of soldiers returned from World War I, the page is full of products designed to remedy the short-comings of being overweight, having superfluous or grey hair, hysteria, excessive perspiration, lice, ringworm and any number of undefined ‘female’ maladies.


Smoking manners

Never hold the cigarette between your teeth or at the side of your mouth.  Oh, and if you happen to be a woman with a “pretty proboscis”, don’t blow smoke through those beautiful nostrils of yours.  In 1933, advertising in the Australian Women’s Weekly chastised the inhospitable host who did not offer cigarettes to their guests.

The Queenslander – 11 May 1889

The Australian Women’s Weekly – 24 June 1933