|Old adverts are fun to look at and a wonderful
source of information for anyone who is interested in our past.
They often include a photograph or drawing of the advertiser's
premises and sometimes a whole street scene. I have chosen some
of the best examples from the Wolverhampton Red Books of 1902
and 1914 although many more can be found elsewhere.
||This advert from 1914 includes a fine view of
Daniel Read & Son's premises at 19 Queen Street.
The shop is now occupied by two watch and clock sales and
repair businesses. They are Jevon and Stanley, and Watch Craft
|An enlargement of the photograph above.
||Another advert from 1914 gives an early view of
Princes Square and Lichfield Street, a view that's hardly
changed. The photograph was taken before 1910 when the Lichfield
Street branch of the Midland Bank was completed and so Price
Lewis must have been one of the first occupants of the Royal
London building, which opened in 1902. Their tailor's shop
occupied at least three ground floor bays of the building and so
must have been one of the largest shops there.
The business was run by Alderman Price Lewis, J.P. of
Horseley Fields, Wolverhampton. He took the business over from
his father, Mr. Herbert Lewis and also became a director of the
Staffordshire Café Company Limited. He joined the Town
Council in 1889 and was twice Mayor of the Borough.
In 1881 Alderman Lewis started the Sunday Adult School and
became its superintendent. He was a staunch advocate of the
temperance movement and President of the Wolverhampton Peace
|A close-up view of the photograph above.
||J. Cavit, Sons and Company had premises in
Lichfield Street and Victoria Street. The drawing in the advert
is the Lichfield Street branch that stood where the old Co-op
used to be. Today the site is occupied by the Moon Under Water
The building was in much the same style as many of the
ornately decorated brick and terracotta Victorian buildings that
are still found in Lichfield Street today. It had a fine dome
with a central flagpole above the main entrance. The dome on the
drawing appears to be slightly smaller than the original, as can
be seen on surviving photographs.
The company, established in 1861 produced all kinds of house
furniture at the Cabinet and Bedding Factory in Darlington
|A larger version of the drawing from the above
advert shows the lovely ornate shop fronts that were typical of
up-market stores of the day.
||This advert for Chas W. Harness from 1902 includes
a fine view of the junction of Princess Street and Lichfield
Street where Rothwells pub can be found today.
|The building was occupied by the Westminster Bank,
later Nat West, until the mid 1990s when it was vacant for a
while before being taken over by Rothwells.
In 1930 the bank
refurbished the building and completely changed the look of the
ground floor, which stayed much the same until the bank's
||Bradley's Toy and Fancy Emporium was located in
the same building as Chas W. Harness and at the same time.
The canopy surrounding the ground floor was called "The
Colonade" and the advert provides us with a fine view of
Bradley's main entrance.
The shop sold a wide variety of goods including leather bags,
dressing bags and cases, travelling trunks, portmanteaus and
purses. There were Indian and Japanese novelties, fans, screens,
electroplated goods, china and glass. There was a sports
department that stocked tennis and cricketing goods and a ladies
department selling perfume, combs and brushes.
|The children's department featured toys and games,
dolls, rocking horses and bagatelle boards, and the young mother
could purchase her child's perambulator.
Bradley's shop was in
many ways a forerunner of the modern department store.
||Henn's jewellery shop can still be found at the
same address today, although in a more modern building. Today's
shop is somewhat enlarged occupying numbers 38 to 41. The
business opened in 1847 and the advert is from 1914.
The display in the window features much the same product
range as can be found at the shop today.
|A close-up view of Henn's shop.
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