Do You Know About the Adverts 250 Project?


Carl Robert Keyes of Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts is running a very impressive project on advertising in eighteenth-century America called The Adverts 250 Project.

Here is what it is all about:

The Adverts 250 Project explores the history of advertising in eighteenth-century America.  It features a daily image of an advertisement published in a colonial newspaper 250 years ago that week.  Brief commentary accompanies each advertisement.

Daily updates are supplemented with longer posts that analyze individual advertisements in greater detail, highlight other marketing items from the period, or examine issues related to research and accessibility of historical sources.

In other words, Keyes posts an ad from a historical newspaper and places it in historical context.  For example, today Keyes posted an ad from the January 17, 1766 issue of the New London Gazette from a man named Robert Hebbard who no longer wants to be responsible for his runaway wife.

The ad reads:

“Whereas my Wife Joanna Hebbard, hath for some time past Eloped from me, and gone into some Parts of the Colony of Connecticut; There are therefore to warn and forbid all Persons whatsoever trusting, trading, ordealing with the said Joanna; hereby declaring that I will never pay any such Debt contracted by her. –Robert Hebbard.

Read Keyes’s analysis of this ad here.