Sign of the Times
Write Letters on Copper “Paper” (Feb, 1933)

Wow, it’s pretty hard to imagine a time when copper was cheaper than paper.

Write Letters on Copper “Paper”

ARIZONANS have thought up a clever idea for getting rid of the surplus copper mined in the state. They are making the metal do duty as paper, and writing business and personal letters on it. The sheets are one-thousandth of an inch thick, and according to testimony make very substantial material for typing. Below is shown a steno inditing a letter on one of the copper sheets of business stationery.

IT’S NEW! (Mar, 1956)


WATER TOWER dominating landscape at General Motors’ new 320-acre Technical Center in Detroit stands 140 feet high, holds up to 250,000 gallons.

FRENCH POWER-BARROW using a two-hp motor handles loads of over. 1,200 lbs. with remarkable ease, is for small volume goods-handling.

RIOT CARS of Rome, Italy, carry twin nozzle turrets that send streams of red dye into the midst of over-ardent demonstrators—an effective dampener.

SMALLEST JET in the world: the British Somers-Kendall SK-1 just before its maiden flight Two-seater has moving V-type tail, retractable extra landing wheels on wingtips.

Braving Jungle Perils to Seek the Lost World (Sep, 1929)

This is a weirdly disjointed tale of William Beebe’s Dr. S. H. Williams attempt to find a “lost world” full of dinosaurs in what is now Guyana. Beebe makes constant reference to his guide/pack mule as “my black” or “my faithful black” yet never mentions the man’s name. He also gets quite upset with his Indian guides because they were only willing to travel with him a certain distance from their homes. Obviously this meant that he was really close to finding his “lost world” and they, being the cowardly savages that they were, refused to get any closer for fear of dinosaur attack. After all, how could they abandon him after he’d so generously provided them with colored beads and calico?

Then there is this:

“Well, the little boat was chug-chugging merrily along when all of a sudden a chicken which we were keeping on board for future reference seemed to experience an unguarded moment. For with a tremendous swishing of feathers it flew overboard.”

Keeping a chicken for “future reference”? Is that a euphemism for “future consumption”? Or did he periodically examine it just to affirm that yup, it’s still a chicken?

Update: I read the intro to this completely wrong. The explorer was Dr. S. H. Williams not William Beebe. Sorry for the mix-up.

Braving Jungle Perils to Seek the Lost World


In the heart of the British Guiana jungle there rises a huge plateau upon which, legend has it, there exists today scores of prehistoric reptilian monsters. The story here presented is that of a scientist’s thrilling search for the lost plateau.

A STRANGE story about yellow Indians; mice that look like kangaroos; eels able to give a man a substantial electric shock; armies of ants that number millions and march in regular formation for over six hours continuously while driving all animal life before them; rivers chock-full of weird-looking parasites; and waterfalls at least five times higher than our own spectacular Niagara, is told by Dr. S. H. Williams, naturalist of the University of Pittsburgh.

Smoke Trail Shows Bridge Route (Apr, 1933)

Smoke Trail Shows Bridge Route

SPECTATORS at the ground breaking ceremonies of the world’s largest suspension bridge which is soon to arise across the famous Golden Gate in San Francisco, were shown very plainly where the bridge would be located. Following the bridge route, a navy plane sped across the water, emitting a streak of smoke, showing just where the bridge would be erected.

The bridge is to cost $35,000,000 and will have one span over a mile long.

Fighting Chinese Pirates with U.S. Marines (Apr, 1933)

Fighting Chinese Pirates with U.S. Marines


Seven Yankee gunboats, patrolling the Yangtze river in conjunction with those of other nations, wage constant war against the bandits who infest this district which boasts one-third of the world’s population. Little known activities of this romantic branch of the foreign service are described in this article.

WHILE riding through an almost endless succession of dangerous rapids, whirlpools and currents in the Yangtze River, about 160 miles above Hankow, a merchant vessel operated by an American, named Captain Baker, suddenly went aground. It was night-time and a stone’s throw away could be dimly seen the craggy outlines of the shore.

New Photocell Eyes Protect Baby Cribs From Kidnapers (Jun, 1934)

New Photocell Eyes Protect Baby Cribs From Kidnapers

ANOTHER use has been found for that mysterious power known as electricity, and this time it will find favor with all mothers. The photo-electric cell, popularly known as the “eye which never sleeps,” has been mounted on baby’s crib. It watches throughout the night, ringing an alarm the instant anyone tries to reach into the crib.

Foreign Villages to Dominate 1934 World’s Fair (Apr, 1934)

Foreign Villages to Dominate 1934 World’s Fair


Amid ultra-modern structures, old villages from far-off lands will be reproduced in detail at Chicago’s second edition of A Century of Progress, Resembling a League of Nations, the World’s Fair will present an entirely new exposition to attract visitors. Here is the first complete story of new attractions now being rushed to completion.

THE 1934 Century of Progress is bursting forth on the shores of Lake Michigan like an amazing League of Nations.

Modern Magic in Light (Oct, 1927)

Modern Magic in Light

“Music” Played by Colors, Statues Dance to Help Solve Problems of Illumination


THE marvels of light from its crude yesterdays to its present brilliance, with a glimpse of future splendors that now seem quite incredible, are shown to visitors at a unique permanent exhibition. It is a museum and a laboratory with a factory adjacent. We see what has been, is and may be in the field of illumination.

Light used to be regarded as just something to see by. Here we find it is a force, a substance, an aesthetic material.

Army Recruited from Idle Men (Jul, 1934)

Army Recruited from Idle Men


A YEAR ago the Government, with incredible swiftness, created the Civilian Conservation Corps. Two ends were sought in its creation. It was designed first of all to take out of the ranks of the unemployed 300,000 young, single men with dependent relatives. Of equal importance was the intention to use the labor of these men in conserving the vast timber and soil resources of the country.

How Much Longer Will Our Big Cities Last? (Oct, 1932)

How Much Longer Will Our Big Cities Last?

Like the dinosaur, which grew too bulky for its own good, our mammoth cities are doomed to extinction, say scientific prophets. Disintegration began when Lindbergh hopped the Atlantic, foreshadowing the day of interurban planes, as told here.


SCIENTIFIC prophets looking into the future proclaim that our mammoth cities, the likes of which the world has never seen before, are doomed to obsolescence. In time, cobwebs will enshroud the cloud-piercing Empire State building and dandelions will grow on Fifth Avenue and Wall Street, they believe, after exhaustive studies into the trend of the times.