Thursday, October 27, 2011

Frog in Your Throat

Frog in Your Throat was a popular brand of throat lozenges at the turn of the century.  They printed a number of cards like this one around 1905 that generally featured a lovely lady in the foreground and a leering frog in the background. The lozenges contained licorice, coltsfoot, wild cherry bark, horehound, cubeb, capsicum, menthol, potassium bitartrate, peppermint, sugar, and other aromatics. Here's a link to a website that shows a nice collection of Frog in Your Throat ephemera.

The back of the card is nice too. It's labeled as a Private Mailing Card instead of a postcard. Prior to the congressional act in 1898, the US Government had a monopoly on printing postcards. After 1898, private mailing cards were allowed, but until 1907 only the address and no message was allowed on the back of the card. That means that a lot of these cards are mysterious; unless the sender wrote on the picture side, there's little indication of who sent it.

While we don't know who sent the card, we do know that it was sent to Miss Prudence Davis of Portland, Maine. A short search revealed that Prudence Augusta Davis (of the same address) studied at Smith College and married Melville H. Marston on Thursday, November 6, 1913.


  1. Wonder why they took the trouble of embossing the card with the words "The Daily Postcard"
    Love that girl's attire.

  2. How very mysterious. I do rather like the leering frog though.

  3. I guess you had to be good at recognising the handwriting back then. A lovely card, I haven't seen those before.

  4. Was this an advertising postcard, then? And if so, do you suppose this was part of a mass mailing? Imagine mass mailings in 1905, each address handwritten legibly enough to reach its intended recipient.

    This is a beautiful card on both sides. I love the font on the back and the little extra decorations. We don't see things like that very often these days. I always appreciate a date when there are people in old clothing: it helps verify styles and date other postcards, photos, etc.

  5. Nancy,
    I suspect that drugstores may have given the blank cards out for free and that they were actually sent by individuals.

  6. I had an uncle who always used that phrase when he was hoarse, "I have a frog in my throat," and I thought he made it up! Thanks for enlightening me!

  7. Oh this card is priceless! I've seen and actually bought a few of these private mailing cards ...funny thing many of them are blank on the other side...I really enjoy when they put such fun things on them like yours!



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