Sunday, December 4, 2016

New Discovery - Live Better Electrically!

We have keys! Scott and I went over to 3301 and poked around.  Most of the owners things are gone and only clean up left to do.  While we were looking around we discovered a curious bronze medallion on the garage wall near the utility room door. I was not familiar with it, but Scott new what it was right away and was very excited about it!   

Apparently, the Live Better Electrically campaign was a really big thing from the late fifties through the early seventies. The idea, driven by electric appliance manufacturers (especially GE) and electric utilites, was to move more new construction to electricity from coal, oil and wood fire.  The campaign worked, especially as the western half of the country became more populated and the demand for new housing increased.  New electricity generating plants were built and the general consensus was that eventually electricity would become so inexpensive that consumers wouldn't even have to pay for it. Well, that didn't happen. But the campaign, driven by kickbacks to builders, was an incredible success.   

The campaign included commercials, here is one I found very entertaining: 

It's interesting (as a marketer) that the commercials I have found tout improved quality of life as the biggest benefit to living better electrically, not cost savings. The "GE Theater" of the late 50's featured video pieces as well and hosted a video tour of (then actor) Ronald Reagans home. Here is one of their TV spots:   

So what will we do with this really cool piece if history?  Not sure yet, but it will be prominently featured near the front door.  Stay tuned, moving day is next Saturday!