During the month of December in 1864, Oshawa’s newspaper would display ads with the word Christmas incorporated as their main attraction. Companies such as Breminer & Urquhart and Murdoch brothers used Christmas as a way to sell their products and to raise their sales. Whether the products are foods or books, in December of 1864 the products became Christmas foods or gifts. Like today people would need to put their summer clothes away and start bundling up. While looking through the 1864 paper it was not hard to come across the companies who were selling cloths best suitable for the fall and winter seasons that would go for about 95 cents per yard. Some companies such as Wood & Bros would accept trades rather than a direct money charge. Not only was the Oshawa newspaper displaying ads on Christmas specials and seasonal cloths, it also displayed skates for sale so people could skate as a winter pass time. Skates were prided on being self adjusted and the companies would often increase the superiority of their skates by referring to them as exclusive. In the winter season the paper began publishing articles related to the season, such as the common cold. An article about the common cold was published in the paper December 7th, 1864. This article explained that colds were caused by one’s own carelessness and a way to explain how to prevent a cold was to stay away from a cool draft. The common cold was not yet identified in the 1860’s so for the people of the time there was still a lot of mystery surrounding this sickness. In conclusion December of 1864 would have been a time for advertising and sales, and a time of discovering the mysteries of effects that the changing of the season has on one’s self.
Here is a sampling of the headlines:
Oshawa December 20th 1864
Hurrah for Murdoch Brothers
A Merry Christmas and Happy New Year for all!
Murdoch brothers have received a splendid lot of layer, bunch, Valencia and Sultana Raisins.
Currants , Figs, preserved Ginger, preserved Peaches, Quinces, Candid Lemon, Orange, and Citron Peel, Soft Shell Almonds, Pickles, Sauces, Lobsters, Sardines, Chocolate, Cocoa, Choice Teas, Pure Coffee, And everything which can assist in making the Christmas Merry and the New Year Joyous.
Oshawa December 21st 1864
Books for Christmas
J.F WIllex, Bookseller,
Opposite the post office, Oshawa, has just received a new and assortment of Photograph Albums, Pew and Pocket Bibles. Also the Poetical works of Milton, Pope, Byron, Rurn Lougfellow, Cowper, Monigomery, Campbell, Coleridge and others in elegant gift bindings.
Oshawa December 21st 1864
Christmas- We hope all our friends will enjoy a merry Christmas. It comes on a Sabbath this year, but we understand that all business places will be closed on Monday, so that all hands may enjoy themselves as usual. Our advertisements columns contain a number of seasonable announcements.