Friday, February 15, 2013

Cutting edge technology in our home. . .surprise surprise!

By any stretch of the imagination I did not grow up in an upscale part of Minot.  Our house was not a traditional one-family home;  but rather a rooming house consisting of six rental rooms in the basement and a main floor divided into four two-room apartments.  The apartment we lived in consisted of two apartments which had been joined. The tenants of this rooming house were often questionable characters as was the neighborhood.  Behind and beside our house was another large unpainted gray rooming house which rented to even more questionable tenants and where there were often drunken brawls and gunshots!  At one end of our 1st Avenue there was a neighborhood bar, the Corner Bar and down cross-street 6th Street were two more neighborhood bars, the Eagles Tavern and the Liberty Tavern all of which were frequented by pretty rough customers.  All in all it was a dubiously colorful neighborhood.

Not surprisingly our home was most definitely not equipped with the latest of modern conveniences. So several months ago when I read in Real Simple magazine that Frigidaire was the first to come out with a two door refrigerator/freezer in the early 1950’s I was pretty excited.  Hey, that’s our refrigerator! We had cutting edge technology!

1950’s era magazine advertisements for the new Frigidaire. Aluminum must have been a big deal at the time.  The ad boasts of aluminum shelves, aluminum ice trays, aluminum butter conditioner (I wonder what that was?), aluminum utility basket and dessert tray, aluminum section liner.frigidaire ad 3

 The aluminum ice cube tray. ice cube tray old

frigidaire ad

My Dad was a truck driver for Dakota Transfer and jumped at the chance to buy the Frigidaire which it had been damaged at the yard. Mom and Dad didn’t think anything of the damage which was a small not readily visible dent at the right rear.  My older brother tells me that he paid about $250 which, even at half price, was a whopping amount of money in those days. Before the Frigidaire we had an ice box so this modern marvel was also our family’s first electric refrigerator.







Mom, looking very stylish and ready for a Saturday night out, posing in front of the prized Frigidaire.  Hey, I think that’s a Toastmaster toaster on the little table beside the Frigidaire, pretty modern!  (I’m guessing that it was “purchased” with either Gold Bond or Green Stamps)Mom 1957

Do you remember Gold Bond and S&H Green stamps? 

gold bond stampsgreen stamps







As a young married in the 60’s I remember saving stamps to buy lamps for our first home. I think the lamp “cost” one book of stamps.  That’s Gary with our new son Gary.

1964-Summer-Gary and Gary Thomas

While I’m time traveling in technology I just have to share this picture of the Sylvania Halolight television which my Aunt Genevieve and Uncle Tony had in their home.  I was not only in awe of the TV since we didn’t have a television but oh so fascinated by that white light.  I wonder what the thought Sylvania had when they produced a TV with a bright fluorescent white light surrounding the TV screen?  Sylvania_HALO_Model_21C529B_1950s_

OK, back to 2013. . .and my four door refrigerator and HD TV.


  1. The picture of your mother is VERY cool! I'm trying to think back to my childhood and recall our refrigerators...having a hard time.

  2. My Aunt Betty had a fridge like that. The freezer used to ice up and we would scrape it to make snow cones. Hmmm ... wonder how healthy that was. She also had an old top loading freezer where she stored fudgesicles and banana pops. That's a great picture of your mom in front of your old fridge. Hope all is well with you. Best wishes, Tammy

  3. Phooey! I typed a long comment and then something went wrong. :/