ESA member Terry AG grew up in the 1950s and 60s in Melbourne’s inner northern suburbs and loved eating ice cream. He devoured his way through the Toppa Woppa, Toppa Trumpet, Slippery Sam (tube of frozen ice) and Donald Duck X29 (orange icy pole) –all Toppa products.
Terry is mainly a biscuit packaging and advertising collector but he also has an important collection of material relating to, mainly, Victorian ice cream companies. His collection includes material from Toppa, Swallows, Sennitt’s, Peter’s, Paul’s, Devondale and Streets.
The range of material includes: wrappers, Dixie cups with wooden paddles, bricks, ice cream tins (now superseded by the plastic tubs), showcards and signs. He also collects related material including stationery, product catalogues, advertising from full colour magazines like Table talk and Woman’s Day and Women’s Weekly as well as snippets from daily newspapers.
He collects material up to the early 1970s. He feels that the presentation of the ice creams became less interesting after that time. Terry is of course still looking for Australian ice cream packaging and advertising.
He is building up this collection and his knowledge about ice cream. He uses the magazines and newspapers of the era to work out when products went on sale; when the companies merged; when the design or format of packaging changed.
A very small proportion of Terry’s collection are ‘gap markers’ – for example a high quality colour photocopy standing in the place of the currently elusive original wrapper, box or label. Like many collectors, he has found the Australian libraries’ online search service Trove a good source of historical material.
This time next year we hope to publish a more authoritative history of ice cream packaging and advertising in Australia. If you can assist Terry with dates, company histories, anecdotes and realia, please let us know.
Stop the presses
This newspaper story from 12 February 2014 reports on some recently found Sennit’s material, http://m.theage.com.au/money/
Here are a few more items Terry would love to get his hands on:
EDITOR’S NOTE: if you have a collection of ephemera you would like considered for display on this website (either relating to this post or on another topic), please get in touch via the comments box below with a description of your items. A member of the editorial team will respond within a short time. You don’t have to be an ESA member to contribute but we do encourage non-members to join the Society.