Over the years, I have seen plenty of examples of Warner’s Safe advertising. Most of it was designed to instill brand loyalty and to help the 19th Century consumer associate the safety and security of an iron safe with the protection of a line of patent medicines. Apparently, retailers of Warner’s Safe Remedies were encouraged to extend the branding into their establishments. Presumably, this extension took the form of display advertising not unlike the displays that manufacturers use today to attract customers. Perhaps one of the best examples of this type of display advertising was the canvas banner. These banners heralded the product, along with a concise statement of its benefits. One such example is the above banner of Warner’s Safe Nervine, Safe Pills and Safe Kidney & Liver Cure.
We don’t know much about this particular sign, except that it may have come from Northeastern Massachusetts, where it was auctioned. The very bottom of the sign bears the words “Murphy, Pine St., Jersey City.” We must assume that Murphy was the producer of the sign, but that does not help much. Special thanks to Tom at Walnutt Antiques for use of his pictures. If you can shed any light on the unique piece of advertising or on “Murphy,” please let me know.