Tuesday, March 22, 2011

22 March 1904: Free Cake for the Ladies

On this day in 1904, the
Athens Banner ran this announcement from local ice cream vendor, W. D. Bowden:

The cake was part of a promotion by Gold Leaf Flour. Over the course of the week, in a newly vacated office on the corner of College Avenue and Broad Street, the Cape County Milling Company of Jackson, Missouri, would be holding blind comparisons of flour brands and flour demonstrations to show bread made of their product was "whiter than any flour manufactured. Comparisons and investigation solicited." 

The company also offered to add to their exhibit any locally produced bread made with their flour, and distributed free slices of "Aunt Laura Billups cake" and coffee to those who attended, noting that  "Ladies are requested to bring their friends."

The Cape County Milling Company went out of business in 1953, but the mill is now a Missouri state park.

W. D. Bowden is listed in the 1904 Athens City Directory as an ice cream manufacturer, though he was also active in real estate. Bowden did not have his own store, so likely sold his products to the many cafes, department store lunch counters, diners, and local grocery stores in Athens and surrounding areas. He lived in Athens until his death in 1920, and is buried at Oconee Hill Cemetery.

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