Top 10 Incredibly Offensive Vintage Ads

Tiny June 29, 2010 85

We have come a long way since the 1930s. Back then advertisements were all about the money. It did not matter who they hurt in the process. Just take a look for yourself. Here are ten ads from the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s ads that makes the Ku Klux Klan look like a bunch of saints.

10. AC Spark Plugs

In the 1930s, AC Spark Plugs had an ad in The Saturday Evening Post that depicted an African American as being a small monkey in a suit. Many ads during that time used monkeys or small apes in place of African Americans.

9. Aunt Jemima

In 1939, Aunt Jemima was making the best pancakes. Aunt Jemima always used an African American lady who was supposed to be a slave as a spokesperson. On all of the ads, she used “slave” slang.

8. Van Heusen

Van Heusen had an ad for ties that showed a woman on her knees serving a man coffee. When did women become slaves?

7. Del Monte

In 1953, Del Monte ketchup bottles got new lids. The ad was a picture of a woman opening the bottle and it read “You mean a woman can open it?”.

6. Elliott’s White Veneer

In 1935, Elliott’s White Veneer came out with an ad that showed a young African American boy painting another young African American boy with the veneer. It stated “SEE HOW IT COVERS OVER BLACK”.

5. General Electric

In 1937 General Electric became racist, also. They came out with a new ad for a sink. The ad showed an African American lady, who was supposed to be a slave, standing by the sink and saying “I’se Sure Got a Good Job Now!”

4. Drummond Sweaters

Drummond Sweaters came out with a sexist ad that showed two men standing on top of a cliff, talking, while a woman dangled from a rope beneath them. The poster began by saying “Men are better than women”

3. Dacron

Dacron had a very sexist poster ad. The ad showed a picture of a lady on the floor with a rug for a body. A man was then standing on her head and was saying ” It’s nice to have a girl around the house”.

2. Cream of Wheat

Cream of Wheat had a poster ad of an African American man holding a chalkboard with a message written on it. Several words were misspelled as to say African Americans were ignorant.

1. Fairy Soap

Fairy Soap had a poster ad of a young white girl asking a young African American girl “Why doesn’t your Mama wash you with Fairy Soap?”. This siuggesting that African Americans were dirty.


  1. John February 22, 2012 at 7:41 pm -

    These day’s it’s the mainstream media who is the most racist, against white Christians. You only have to look at the news and entertainment to see it. In Britain they have tried to account for every culture and to the detriment of every cultures. Multi-culturalism is ultimately a fallacy e; it tries to integrate and separate at the same time. It assumes everyone is the same and insists everyone respects differences. Birth rates, war, consumption and religion attest to the fact that human beings are predisposed not to be the same. You will also find that every other culture can have their say but if you try and establish a white, western, Christian movement you’d be considered a racist bigot. Multi-culturalism works in small doses, but humans don’t produce in that manner especially from Asia where some of the people are extremely intolerant..

  2. kurt March 18, 2012 at 1:45 am -

    Sorry, but you’re kind of an idiot. It was a much different world, a world in which political correctness was not an issue. You’re trying to find any outlet you can to validate your desires to scream “RACIST!”. Much of your information is false. For example, the 1937 G.E. poster depicting a black lady washing dishes. She’s obviously not a slave, that wasn’t possible in 1937. Slavery was abolished in the mid 19th century… In the early part of the 20th century, minorities often worked as maids, cooks, drivers, etc, for more wealthy households. These were PAID employees, not slaves. Many of the stereotypes depicted by the ads are no different than the modern stereotypes of ebonics and saggy pants. Every generation will have them.

  3. Tammy April 20, 2012 at 8:26 pm -

    none of this stuff bothers me because one i know who i am. i know no man is better than me and that no white person is better than me. yes it was offensive in that time, but now i just laugh at ignorance.

  4. evilwonders July 11, 2012 at 12:08 pm -

    In my humble opinion, the most of people commenting, are judging facts from other time with their present time beliefs. Which in my opinion it’s just wrong. At that time, wasn’t an issue being politically incorrect. That’s it. Was OK to be offensive to anyone (or what we call offensive today). Society changes, and I believe we can try, but we’ll never fully understand the meaning of something didn’t happened in our time, and the impact on the people from that period.

  5. Leslie October 13, 2012 at 9:33 am -

    Im not surprised that people say these ads aren’t offensive. Guess what? the human race hasn’t changed much since then. People are still racist….they just hide it better because they know its wrong. but in reality they still feel like its ok to degrade someone who is not like them.

  6. Rems June 5, 2011 at 9:42 pm -

    You seriously think this isn’t offensive? I mean seriously? Especially coming from a time when it was ok to be offensive and not have to hide behind the internet to say some of the negative things people still believe? Wow! is all I have to say to you…

  7. Chey June 18, 2012 at 5:46 pm -

    Wow! I haven’t laughed this hard in a while. I laughed the hardest at everyone else’s comments. If everyone would stop worrying about offending a different race or culture maybe we could accomplish something.