Most of us are aware of the ‘Energizer Bunny’ who hops across our TV screens, beating a drum to advertise Energizer batteries and we’re all familiar with the numerous automobile ads, but my most memorable ads memories have to do with politics. For many years my husband, Les, was involved with the two political conventions, which convened every four years to nominate the President and V.P. who were placed on the Republican and Democratic ‘tickets’. These conventions were held in the summer and the campaigns began immediately afterwards. Today we have the Primary System, which is more inclusive of the whole country; no longer are the nominees selected in smoked filled back rooms. Like today, print media, such as newspapers, magazines, flyers and hand-outs were distributed around the country. Third class mail helped to circulate information to every household. Radio and television were utilized to bombard the public with flattering information about the candidates and to criticize their opponents. Even large billboards adjacent to well-traveled highways carry some of these commercials. The closer to the November election, the more frenzied are the ads.  Contributors to the candidates could purchase such souvenirs as scarves, neckties, fancy keep-sake boxes, ash trays (many people did smoke back then!) and of course, the ubiquitous buttons. Many of these were distributed freely. Over the three conventions I attended with Les I was able to collect quite a few of these buttons and I now keep them on my ‘political hat’!

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