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a history 1913 – 2 0 1 3

On the occasion of our 100th Anniversary, we are posting this history of the Ad Club that was written a decade ago by former Ad Club President, Charles E. Jackson. As you read on, you will understand that the Ad Club actually began forming in 1904, but not until February 26, 1913 did The Advertising Club of Greater Boston get the official seal of approval from the Commonealth. We hope you enjoy the backstory behind all that the Ad Club of Boston has been and how it became what it is today.

Our Mission Any historical research, no matter how limited, quickly confirms the simple truism that no matter how much things change, they remain the same. Throughout the Boston AdClub’s 100 years, five basic missions are constantly present yet always cloaked in different dress due to changing circumstances: The Mission of Advocacy, the club as advocate for the advertising business in the general community The Mission of Defender, the club as watchdog against those externally and internally who would manipulate the advertising business for their own purposes The Mission of Promoter, the club as educator and developer of the resources of its membership The Mission of Leader, the club as an active force in the community at large The Mission of Fraternity, the club as a social bonding experience for the peer group it serves.

The historical survey that follows is fundamentally in chronological order, yet every act and fact in the club’s history can be viewed as a fit into one of the above named missions. Certainly-there are times in the club’s history in which one mission assumed more importance than another due to the external business, political and social environment in which the AdClub found itself. But the purposes of the Boston AdClub, no matter how many times they have been restated, represent a 100-year march to the same drummer. In the final analysis, the Boston Ad Club, as an essentially human institution, is a clear and fascinating reflection of its time.

Ad Club Prequil: 1904-1908

THE BROTHERHOOD OF AD MEN The Ad Club was born as a result of rivalry between New York and Boston advertising men. Already, something should sound familiar. The idea for a club came up at a dinner following a baseball game between visiting New York advertising space salesmen and local advertising men. Curiously, we know more about that game and the dinner that followed than we do about any other single activity of the club in the 75 years that followed. Meetings featuring Presidents of the United States, membership jaunts to Berlin and London, and public service

accomplishments are generally dismissed with a single line statement by the recorders of the time, yet the ball game and the party afterwards have been repeatedly described in vivid detail. The Ad Club owes this rich memory of its birth to Tilton S. Bell. “Tilt”, as he was affectionately referred to in comments about him, was a genuine survivor. He was present at the 1904 and dinner and later served as President of the club in 1908-09. Fifty years later, in 1954, Tilt was still writing-and presumably talking –about September 24, 1904. On that date the visiting New Yorkers picked up the glove of challenge thrown down by their Bostonian hosts. The root causes of the rivalry are no more understood than the reasons why the Red Sox and the Yankees stir such deep passions even today. The Boston effort was organized and captained by Carroll J. Swan, first secretary of the club and later president from 1912-14 and again from 1931-33. Ray Little, ad manager of Pearson’s Magazine in New York, handled recruitment for the visitors. ON THE RED Sox DIAMOND The baseball game itself was no sand lot affair. The American League Ball Park, located on Columbus Avenue, was made available to the teams through the courtesy of John I. Taylor, owner of the Red Sox. Mr.Taylor is reported to have survived the day as umpire. There was a great to-do about who was eligible to play. The original challenge allegedly demanded that only “bona fide members” of the advertising profession could take the field. But Tilt Bell later revealed that” a method of communications sometimes referred to as ‘the underground’ carried word to the Bostonians that their New York foe were bringing in a semi-professional pitcher”. Colonel Swan (as he was known after World War I) decided to meet fire with fire. He reportedly “induced” a young Harvard pitcher named Clarkson to join the Boston advertising business for one day. When the teams finally took the field, both sides were replete with ringers from collegiate and semi-pro ranks. Perhaps the strangest developments of all in this bizarre prelude to the birth of the AdClub was that the game lasted only two and one half innings and no record was ever keptof the score. Was this a matter of politeness to guests or simply a convenient lapse of memory for saving face? AN AFTER DINNER THOUGHT The banquet that followed the game at the Berkley Hotel on the corner of Berkley and Boylston Streets (only a block from the present day headquarters of the Ad Club) was hosted by the Bostonians. We can only speculate in our cynical 1990’s mindset whether it was what was consumed-and in what quantities-that caused Alan H. Wood of Wood, Putnam, & Wood to rise to his feed and suggest that the advertising men of Boston should band other and form an advertising club. ​ Wood recommended a club limited to “men identified in the placing of advertising in weekly and monthly publications.” The Ad Men’s Club of Boston, as it was called, was to have two reasons for being: “to promote good fellowship and to study advertising”, presumably in that order.

The suggestion was cheered by the men present and a committee consisting of J.W.Barber, S. Keith Evas, and Carroll J. Swan was appointed to draw up a constitution and by-lays and call the first meeting. That meeting was held October 17th, 1904 at the Boston Yacht Club. The initial entry in an old ledger that has survived the decades suggested that on November 22 the club had collected $46, representing the sale of 23 “dinner tickets.” ​ The first officers elected were Edgarton Chichester, president; M.V. Putnam, vice president; Carroll J. Swan, secretary; George W. Coleman, treasurer. Little is known of Chichester except that he was a rep for Century Magazine in Boston. A quarter of a century later, he was referred to in print as “that splendid ad man baseballer.” The initial dues were $2.00 a year, and meeting were to be held “whenever the officers could obtain an interesting speaker”. ​ It would be a stain on the memory and character of Alan Wood and the other advertising athletes present at the Berkley Hotel to bash to suggest that the idea of the Boston Ad Club sprang from an enthusiasm generated by an over-indulgence in the grape. In fact, the emergence of the club at that moment in time was part of a historical process in the development of the business of advertising. The men at that ball game celebration in 1904 deserved credit for having the prescience to become part of a trend before it was recognized as such. From Racket to Profession ​In the early years of the 20th century, the advertising business was in a critical stage of maturing from a racket into a profession. The explosive growth of magazine and newspapers in the 19th century coupled with the spread of the population in the American movement westward had created an opening for those who could link manufacturers and their consumers through advertising. Of course such advertising paid the bills of the print media and added fuel to their rapid expansion. ​ The manufactured who understood the value of advertising needed middlemen who could find the media, evaluate them, contract with them, check them, and then pay them. These middlemen, the first ad men, generally had a reputation for honesty almost equal to the outrageously false and overstated claims of much of the advertising they placed. ​ The basic method of preparation was for the ad men to buy space from the media as cheaply as possible and sell it for all they could get. On the other side of the coin, advertisers with a budget would invite bids and award the business to the advertising “agent” who could put together the most impressive list for the money available. The temptation to falsify claims and space rates and to misrepresent the number of insertions was seldom resisted. The standard agent’s commission was 25%. Some publishers would accept payment in merchandise or services such as hotel accommodations on which a shrewd agent could turn a wholesaler’s profit. ​ The lucrative possibilities in such a free wheeling system of doing business often attracted a type of gambler who preferred advertising deals to roulette tables. The reputation of advertising as a slippery business was exacerbated by the fraudulent claims of many of the first major advertisers most notably the makers of patent

medicines. Lacking any standards, the advertising business was nurtured in chaos and fed by greed. Men of Rank and Position ​ oney in America, can often be a path to position. And position leads to stability. M The inheritors of wealth prefer to rely on standards rather than risks. The Boston advertising men who founded the ad club were clearly men of position who sought to solidify their rank in society by declaring themselves to be men of purpose who viewed their business activities as a profession based on expertise. They created a club “to study” advertising and, as will be seen, these men set about forging ties to the establishment while presenting themselves as leaders who set standards for others to follow. ​ The men in Boston were not alone in deciding the time had come to bring some unity and distinction to their business. Ad clubs began springing up all over the country in the early 1900’s. The National Federation of Advertising Clubs of America, which was to evolve into the Advertising Federation of America, was founded in 1904. The Boston men were in step with the times. Interesting Speakers Only ​ he Ad Men’s Club of Boston planned to meet whenever the officers could find T an interesting speaker. Those early officers were astonishingly successful in their search. During the first five years of the club, guest speakers included Senator Beveridge of Indiana, the Chief of the United States Secret Service, and General Charles H. Taylor of the Boston Globe. ​ It is unfortunate that no record exists of what these major public figures said to the club, and we may still wonder how a new organization with only a couple hundred members could attract such prominent orators. It speaks to the fact that these founding club fathers were men who had made enough money, albeit in a not totally reputable business, to attain standing in society were $5,000 annual income enabled a man who support a large family, own a home tended by servants, and move in the echelons of what we would call today the upper middle class. ​Despite the obvious success in corralling some top name speakers, it is interesting to note that those who would remember the old Ad Men’s Club in later years were inclined to comment mainly on its social aspect. Tilton Bell wrote: “Throughout the years 1904-08, the club was primarily based on the theory of good fellowship, meeting and dining while listening to the visiting speakers.” But then in 1909, the club took a turn toward serious business, changed its name and quickly made a lasting imprint on the advertising business. The Pilgrim Publicity Association 1909-1924 Blue Serge Coats & Truth in Advertising ​In 1909 the Ad Men’s Club of Boston changed its name to The Pilgrim Publicity Association. We do not know why the change was made, but a few facts surrounding the change can lead to some reasonable speculation. All observers note that the campaign to change the name was the crusade of one George Brewster Gallup who was destined for the presidency in 1915-16. ​ Mr. Gallup did not achieve his objective without a struggle. One source notes that the president of the club at the time, George W. Coleman, remembered that “he was presiding the night at the Ad Men’s Club had the banquet in the Bellevue

Hotel when the battle raged for and against this change in name”. Considering the tendency of organizations to bury their divisions, recalling a “battle” suggests that the name change represented something far more fundamental than mere cosmetics. One likely scenario is that central issue was one that the ad club was to struggle with frequently over the years. Was the club primarily a fraternal organization or was it destined to fulfill a leadership role in the greater business community? ​ Mr. Gallup and his allies must have believed in the latter. There is some indication that the young club was already outgrowing its sporadic socializing. In 1908, the club tried its first planned program of meetings. But most significantly, the club was a major factor in helping the Boston Chamber of Commerce reach a membership of nearly 4,000, making it the largest chamber of commerce in the nation. The New Spirit Prevails ​ he name Pilgrim Publicity Association certainly suggests a broader base capable T of a larger outreach than a club limited to men in advertising. One also senses that the term “publicity” may have carried a more respectable aroma than “advertising.” In any case, the deed was done, and the club billed its new identity was representative of “The New Spirit.” It worked. I​n one year, the club tripled its membership and quadrupled its treasury. The earliest roster of the P.P.A. available is for 1914. By then it is apparent that this spurt in membership was only possible by admitting men (still only men) in endeavors other than those “identified in the placing of advertising in weekly and monthly publications”. That 1914 roster includes such diverse fellows as Arthur Reddish, a bond salesman; Frederick Newman, president of a teapot manufacturer, and Louis J. Rouleau, a lawyer. ​ he New Spirit of the P.P.A. soon led to new attire. Members attending meetings and T notional conventions dressed in the blue serge coats, white flannel trousers, white shoes, and straw hats with the bands inscribed “PILGRIM” in gold letters. Indeed, there are a few things in the history of the club that may never come again. 1911: A Year to Remember ​In the ninety year history of the Boston Ad Club, there is one year that clearly put Boston advertising on the national map: 1911. As a result of that landmark year, Boston was for decades thereafter to be associated with the movement for “Truth in Advertising.” I​n 1910, George Coleman, last president of the Ad Men’s Club and first president of the Pilgrim Publicity Association, and Henry B. Humphrey, the father of the only family dynasty the ad club has known to date, journeyed to Omaha to attend the annual meeting of the Associated Advertising Clubs of America. The men bore a twofold purpose: enter The Pilgrim Publicity Association into membership of the national association and then lobby the A.A.C. to hold its next annual convention in Boston. They succeeded on both counts. ​ he P.P.A spent a year preparing for the big event. Pilgrims spread out across New T England spawning new ad clubs in smaller cities under the auspices of the Boston association. What deserves note as the club’s first public service advertising campaign was launched. Display ads were places in the Boston newspapers

urging Bostonians to be good hosts and help dispel the popular notion (then and now) that Boston is a cold, unfriendly city. The Truth in Advertising Crusade ​ he 1911 convention was a brilliant success. It was the largest assemblage of T advertising men in history up to that point. Most importantly, the A.C.A convention of 1911 marked the birth of the Truth in Advertising crusade. Even with the poor ranking of advertising in popularity in 1994, it is difficult to imagine the profound contempt that educated American society held for the advertising product of 1911. Advertising was the source of unbelievably outrageous claims and outright fraud. And the respectable men who gathered in Boston that year became determined to clean it up. ​ .J. Kenner in the book The Fight for Truth in Advertising, writes; “The H fervor of those Ford Hall, Boston gatherings is remembered by many hundreds still living who were present there. I recall the almost evangelistic spirit that animated those who were leaders in advertising work during and after the Boston convention.” ​ The young ad clubs around the nation were to become the instruments of this Truth in Advertising movement. For the first time they had a clear purpose other than fraternal brotherhood. Several clubs, including Boston, formed “vigilance committees” that launched investigations into advertisements suspected of being false of misleading. State legislators were lobbied for laws to forbid fraudulent advertising based on a model of statue devised by Printer’s Ink magazine. The Humphrey Pinnacle ​With applause for his leadership in recruiting the now nationally acclaimed convention of 1911 to Boston, Henry B. Humphrey was elected president of the Pilgrim Publicity Association that very same year. The one year Humphrey regime was a pinnacle in the history of the Boston club. Membership passed the 500 mark, and the organization now involved weekly board of directors meetings; semi-monthly luncheons; and monthly banquets. ​ The public highlight of the year was the appearance of President William Howard Taft at a luncheon in his honor on March 18, 1912 attended by 450 “leading business men of Boston.” Newspaper Night drew the biggest crowd, and Textile Night was devoted to ideas on how the advertising business could help the New England textile industry. ​ A Speaker’s Bureau was established and ad men were sent out into the hustings to talk on such subjects as “New England for New England” and “Advertising as an Investment”. Education became a concern for the first time in club history. The P.P.A’s Educational Committee under John J. Morgan created the Prosperity Building Campaign of 1912, “as systematic course of study for improving the work of all advertising men” taught by Prof. Colin A. Scott of Tuffs College. A Ladies Night? Henry Humphrey’s brilliant year brought one other shattering breakthrough. For the first time women were recognized by this avowedly male bastion. Ladies night was held on the stage of the Boston Opera House with 125 couples in attendance.

The guests were opera stars of the time and Eben D. Jordan, the father of grand opera in Boston. In addition, President Humphrey helped organize the first Women’s Advertising Club in the country in Boston on Nov. 13, 1991. The year 1911-12 was a glittering year in world history, the last great year of the 19th century belief in progress, before the lights would be turned out by the Great War. For the Ad Club in Boston, then known as The Pilgrim Publicity Association, it was also a time of remarkable growth and optimism.

1913 Ad Club Charter

it’s official Going with the momentum of the past year, the members of the P.P.A. decided to make this club legitimate in the eyes of the State of Massachusetts. The members and president, Carroll J. Swan, made a motion to apply for The Advertising Club of Greater Boston to become an organized corporation. And on February 26, 1913, the Commonwealth granted the certificate. Although on the certificate it was called The Advertising Club of Greater Boston, it wasn’t until eleven years later in 1924 when the name was publically changed from the Pilgrim Publicity Society to The Advertising Club of Boston.

Meeting By Phone ​In 1915 under the George Gallup presidency the entire city was in awe of a dinner program conducted by telephone to San Francisco. To whom the Bostonians were talking and about what is a mystery, but for a society that had never heard of television and could not have imagined talking through computers, it must have been an event on the cutting edge of science fiction. ​ The Gallup tenure also marked the entry of the club into the area of helping secure employment for members and others. An Employment Committee is reported “to have secured many positions for many worthy advertising men and women.” ​ Herbert G. Porter’s administration, 1916-17, was noteworthy in two respects. First, Porter restored financial order to the club. Previous to his leadership, the club was generally in the red ad the end of the fiscal year, and it was customary to request that some of the more affluent members pay their dues in advance to pay for last year’s bills. When Porter took office, the P.P.A. had $500 in unpaid bills. When he left office, the treasury had a balance of nearly $1,000. The “Geard Dinner” ​Mr. Porter is also remembered for organizing what was known for years as the “Geard Dinner.” With the entry of America into World War I imminent, the P.P.A invited James A, Geard, then Ambassador to Germany, along with Leonard Wood, to be guest speakers. The entire city begged for tickets. The club sold 2,200 tickets with cash up front because of the demand. The affair netted $3,400, a tidy sum in those days. It is difficulty for us to understand the mindset of that time created by the total commitment to the war, but the fact is that the club voted donate the entire profits of the event to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to help defray “defensive expenses.” ​

Later in 1917 under President Frank Black the club’s prestige was again enhanced by the appearance of former President Theodore Roosevelt before an audient of 10,000 in the Mechanics Building under the joint auspices of The Pilgrim Publicity Association and the Boston Chamber of Commerce. Two Sources of Agitation ​ eorge C. Frolich’s administration during 1920-21 was by his own assessment a G time of agitation. The name Pilgrim Publicity Association proved to have a major drawback. Hundreds of letters would arrive at the club from all over the country seeking information on The Pilgrims, Plymouth Rock, Lexington, and Concord, etc. The club had no intention of getting into the travel business. ​ And of course women were and increasing source of agitation. By 1920, they could even vote. As Mr. Frolich wrote in 1935: “The agitation of consolidating with the Women’s Advertising Club of Boston was also started in my regime.” ​ Nevertheless, even with these agitations, Mr. Frolich filled two Pullman cars for a journey to attend the meeting of the Associated Advertising Clubs of the World. He is also remembered for having the dues raised from $12 to $20 per year while reducing the cost of club luncheons from 75 cents to 35 cents. The First Publication ​ he period of The Pilgrim Publicity Association has left one more important legacy T to the Ad Club: the idea that the club should have its own publication. The present day Ad Club is fortunate to have a few issues of The Pilgrim from the early twenties. The monthly edition is an editorial amalgam of news about the club, a few tidbits of news about business in general, a few situations wanted ads (Fired: Owing to business conditions…I am out of a job”), and perhaps what a modern day perspective finds most alien, numerous articles with moral instructions on the benefits of honesty, hard work, and optimism. As the cover of one issue of The Pilgrim declares: “Work a bit harder, Buy a bit more, Smile a bit cheerier-ad you’ll soon find the world well on its way to Prosperity!”


Surviving Boom, Bust, & War I​n 1924 the agitation felt by President Frolich in 1920 reached a climax when The Pilgrim Publicity Association voted to change its name to The Advertising Club of Boston. A committee headed by Past President and a founder of the Boston Better Business Bureau Charles Marble recommended the change. ​ In a report to members in an issue of The Pilgrim, the committee urged returning the word “Club” to the name in the hope that it would generate “a little club spirit.” Ironically, they noted that one of George Gallup’s strongest arguments for dropping “club” in favor of “association” was the lack of seriousness of purpose that the name Ad Men’s Club of Boston suggested. The wind had also shifted once again in the eternal debate on how seriously the club should take itself.

Women Won’t Go Away ​There was also that nagging issue of women who would not just go away. The actual year that members of the female gender were permitted to join the club is unclear at this point. However, it was most likely in 1926 since tow president later claimed credit for the “wisdom of this action.” That’s how Will Rogers remembered it, and he left the presidency in 1926. The new president, Patrik F. O’Keefe, declared that women entered the club under his administration. In order to acknowledge both assertions, we must assume the blending of the sexes occurred in 1926. ​ he Women’s Advertising Club of Boston continued on for a year years T until it merged into the Advertising Club of Boston. The last president of the Women’s Ad Club was Marion F. Brown, a highly regarded poet and advertising manager of R.H. Stearns. Major O’Keefe In Charge ​ rom the written reports that have survived the years, it is clear that the F administration of Patrick F. O’Keefe, 1926-27, was the most memorable of the decade. It may be that every generation of advertising in Boston needs and Irishman to shake it up. ​ at O’Keefe served as a president twice in 1914-15 and again in 1926-27. P When asked to summarize his first term in later years, he stated, “Let that pass.” However, after the World War, he was referred to simply as “The Major”, and he was not as reluctant to recount his accomplishments as chief executive of the club the second time around. The Major arranged for the weekly luncheon meetings of the Ad Club to be breakfast over radio station WNAC “without any cost to the club except for the wires.” An orchestra was organized to play at the luncheons. ​ Major O’Keefe could take credit for the several innovative programs including a series of so-called “Little Journeys”, in which members visited various factories around Boston. A class in public speaking for members was held at the Emerson College of Oratory. And the first effort to establish a subsection in the club for younger members was made through organization of the Junior Group, made up of young men and women with an interest in advertising. ​ The Major was a bottom line man. Membership hit a high water mark of 596. The club took larger space in its Hotel Bellevue headquarters increasing its rent from $1,800 to $3,000 per year. Even with this commitment, when Major O’Keefe left office, the club had net assets of $6,333.36 plus an inventory of $1,200 or a total net worth of approximately $7,500. The Great Trek to Berlin ​The boom years of the 1920’s were capped for the Boston Ad Club with a “junket” to Berlin, Germany in 1929. More than 200 members and presumably a few of their spouses traveled 4,500 miles by ship and train to attend an international advertising convention. The detailed were handled by a very popular and prominent man, John C. Nicodemus, who was to become president of the club in 1941.

​ From the materials available it is difficult to detect what effect the Great Depression had on the Advertising Club of Boston. Perhaps the lack of printed materials is one of the effects. The club had started a weekly publication called “Advertising News of Boston”(except during the months of July and August), but apparently it ceased to exist in 1932 or 33. The only information we have on the rest of the decade comes from the meager gleanings from an annual Roll Call club roster plus the recollections of the few members who recoded them later on in life. ​ The Christian Science Monitor published a special edition celebrating the Boston Ad Club on May 27, 1935. However, the articles therein concentrated on the early history of the club and being the Christian Science Monitor, the Truth in Advertising movement. ​ We know that when the decade of the 1930’s began the club headquarters had been moved from the Bellevue Hotel to the Stalter Building and later on to the Hotel Statler, now the Park Plaza, where they were to remain until 1970. ​Membership remained fairly consistent during the thirties ranging from a high 514 in 1932-33 to a low of 386 in 1938-39. A Turning Inward ​ ach year the Roll Call roster the president of the club was expected to make a E brief statement of his year in office. Invariably the comment was big on generalities and short on details. One senses from this perspective in time that the Ad Club began to turn in on itself, tending to its own affairs and turning away from the outward presence in the community that had been marked by the Truth in Advertising Movement, Speakers’ Bureaus, and the fathering of ad clubs in other cities and towns. ​ onventions, however, were still big concerns. In 1936, the Boston Ad Club hosted C the annual convention of the Advertising Federation of America for the second time, which commemorated the Silver Jubilee of the Truth in Advertising Movement started here in 1911. Five years later, in 1941, the AFA returned again to highlight what Ad Club historian Tilton Bell termed a “record breaking year” in membership and meeting attendance. Mr. McAteer’s Candor ​ owever, the feeling that during the Depression and World War II years the BosH ton Ad Club just chugged along tending its garden, reveling in memories of the old days, while waiting for a new dawn, is given credence by the poignant statement of President Philip J, McAteer to members in 1937: “Presidents come and Presidents go, but the Advertising Club moves forward despite them…On taking over the A.F.A Convention last June, I planned to do many things that I honestly hoped would make this the greatest administration in the history of the club ​ The months rolled by with nothing of a startling nature taking place and now, at the close of my year, I find everything just about where it was in the beginning. So I leave it to my successor to give us the great administration.” Phil McAteer deserves the Ad Club’s Ninety Year Special Award for Candor.

The Post-War Years 1945-1960

Let the Good Times Roll ​The period between the end of World War II into the early 1950’s the advertising business was no longer questioned as a legitimate enterprise. The need of the Ad Club’s founding fathers to gain respect was a distant concern. ​ Advertising had earned a place in the American business ethos. It may have been considered a little flaky around the edges, but advertising was finally accepted as a necessary instrument in building business and sustaining the media. Even FDR had said that if he weren’t a politician, we would have been an ad man. ​ In fact, the advertising business bordered on being glamorous. The ad agencies with all their emerging creative types were replacing the space salesman as the defining core of what it means to be “in advertising”. The “ad biz” was not quite “show biz”, but it was fun, fun, fun!

The Era of the Tuesday Luncheons ​ he centerpiece activity of the Boston Ad Club during the happy and prosperous T time was a weekly luncheon held for many years as the Hotel Stalter. The luncheons were always held on Tuesdays and they attracted hundreds and sometimes over a thousand men and women. Included in that number were all sorts of folk from businesses that made a living off advertising. These people were known as “suppliers”. ​ The Tuesday luncheons featured a “program.” If the old boys of the club had shown up expecting to enjoy a lecture on the moral virtues of salesmanship or the character building qualities inherent in oratory, they would have been sorely disappointed. While there was an effort made to serve the interests of the various segments of the ad business, the emphasis of the ad club programs was on entertainment. ​ There were fashion shows and “cabaret nights” in which members could show off their song and dance talents. A scan of famed speakers during President Phil Nutting’s banner year of 1957-58 included Ted Williams, Walter Cronkite, and Elsa Maxwell, “queen of all party givers.” ​ The Ad Club luncheons were also times for information exchange and perhaps a little personal selling. They functioned as a sort of human bulletin board. You could find out who was leaving what company and going where; what accounts may be on the loose; and sometimes personal scuttlebutt of a titillating nature. And it always happened at the same time and in the same place. The Ad Club was a cohesive and familiar family. ​ The Boston Ad Club of this period was not purely a party. The club assumed a role in the greater community, but the attitude had changed. Instead of sending out speakers to win converts of the legitimacy of advertising, the club now went into the community and asked “what can we do for you?” The idea of public service began to take root.

A Walk on the Freedom Trail ​ f all the public service activities the Ad Club championed during this time, the O one that has had the most lasting effect was the club’s campaign for Boston’s Freedom Trail. Under the leadership of Richard Berenson, president of the club 1956-57, the Ad Club achieved recognition in the most important factor in turning the Freedom Trail into the showplace it remains to this day for tourists in the Hub. Berenson is credited with the idea of the now familiar red line that guides visitors through Boston’s maze of historical attractions. ​ he biggest event of the late forties and fifties was the Fiftieth Anniversary of the T Advertising Club of Boston in 1954. It was celebrated in major style when the Advertising Federation of America voted to hold its annual convention in Boston. Since the A.F.A. was also founded in 1904, the affair developed into a joint Golden Anniversary Party. The June convention drew an array of 40 speakers and seminar leaders including such advertising giants as Lawrence Chiat, and John P. Cunningham. ​ The official convention program was perhaps the most impressive publication ever produced by the Ad Club: 178 pages of information supported by 120 advertisers. No written reports of the outcomes of the convention are available, but if the organizations that went into the program are any indication, the affair must have been a resounding success.

Encouraging Juniors ​The Junior Ad Club is worthy of note. From time to time, as we have seen with Major O’Keefe’s Junior Group of the 1920’s, the Boston Ad Club has either sponsored or given its blessing to groups that focused on serving the interests of younger people. At no time was this impetus stronger than in the fifties and early sixties. By 1958, the Junior Ad Club was 100-members strong; held bi-weekly meetings; sponsored the Jacob Award for “Adman of the Year”; and once a year ran the program for the senior Ad Club. In 1958, the juniors invited the promotion manager for the fledgling Playboy magazine. Oh, those young rascals! ​ The membership of the Ad Club by 1960 was a far cry from its initial restriction to “men identified in the placing of advertising in weekly and monthly publication”. President Phil Nutting would have been acceptable to the founders as a rep for Holiday magazine, and perhaps Presidents Paul Hoag, Paul Provandie, and Frank Christian might have qualified as ad agency men. However, rising to the leadership of the Ad Club after World War II were men from more diverse business backgrounds; Paul Newsome from public relations; Ed Donnelly and Jim Connolly from outdoor advertising; and the aforementioned Richard Berenson who was in the liquor business. ​ Printers and those in the graphic arts were a very important element on the membership roster. In 1955, the printing and graphic arts business was the largest employer of people in the city of Boston. The Ad Club during this period began to publish its own weekly newsmagazine from September to June called Advertising News. The editor and manager was Tom Tierney, publisher of New England Printer & Lithographer, the monthly trade magazine for that huge printing population. This connection was to take an unexpected twist in the 1960’s.

The 1960’s

Time of Turmoil & Transformation ​ omething profound happened in America during the 1960’s. Anyone old enough S to remember what it was like to live and work in America before and after that decade would have to admit that some sort of change of change had occurred in society. This is not the place to argue the merits of that chance or discern the reasons for it, but it is necessary to note that whatever happened had to do with a change of attitude regarding authority. Authority at all levels was challenged as was the agreement which authority demanded regarding how we behave and even dress in public. ​ The Advertising Club of Boston as a public institution was not immune from the effects of this change. The advertising business which the club served was undergoing a major transformation. The advertising agency was the increasingly dominant factor in the business, and within the agency the account executive/ salesman was being superseded in prominence by “the creatives.” ​ he rise of the creative element in advertising was fueled by the growing T dominance of television as the primary mass medium for advertising in terms of dollars and sheer power of teach. The Ad Club, if it were to remain a viable organization serving the needs of its membership, needed to respond to these shifting forces.

Hatch is Born ​The Hatch Awards, started as a BBDO agency party, came under club sponsorship. It is fair to say, however, that in the 1960’s it is doubtful anyone would foresee the huge potential that Hatch possessed for the club, and which the club would eventually realize from the 1970’s until the present. ​ Diversifying the membership to include the ever more powerful electronic media was more difficult. The Ad Club bore a distinct coloration of print. Not only was it started by a print media salesman, Boston advertising was print oriented. Printers and their allied industries were a source of strength in the club. The electronic media people had their own organizations, the largest of which was the Broadcasting Executives Club (B.E.C) later to be known as the New England Broadcasting Association. ​ One of the major challenges the Ad Club faced in the 1960’s was the proliferation of clubs and associations with ties to the advertising business. The impulse was to accommodate them, and in the annual rosters of the Ad Club during the sixties (then called “Communication Directories”) spaced is devoted to several associations such as the Art Directors Club; the B.E.C.; the Retail Ad Club; and the Publicity Club. This was a nice gesture of cooperation among various elements of the communications business, but it could not erase the fact that the Ad Club was often in competition with these groups for members, events, and dollars.

Call Miss Gold! ​Internally, at the beginning of the decade of the sixties the Boston Ad Club made a significant shift in organization that was to presage the most profound change the club would have in modern times. From its inception, the club had been organized and run by its officers and directors, volunteers all. The internal affairs-the clerical nuts and bolts of the organization-were for many years handled by one Miss Jenette Gold. ​ Miss Gold served the club as executive secretary for at least 30 years, but sadly for a woman who gave such long service there is no written record of her career presently in the source materials available at the club. Occasionally a picture of her appears in an annual roster and hardly a meeting is mentioned without a tag line of “Call Miss Gold!” but the disappearance of the copies of Advertising News leaves us with no record of when and why she retired from service to the club. ​ In the 1961 roster, Rand Smith makes an appearance as executive secretary, obviously succeeding Miss Gold. In the 1962 roster, Rand Smith appears as the executive director. By 1964, Rand Smith is executive director assisted on staff by Elizabeth Ely, executive secretary. The Boston Ad Club had embarked on a new method of operation, but there is no written record whether this was a planned decision or whether it juts happened in the normal course of events. ​ Those who remember Rand Smith can attest to his gentlemanly character. He was a great counselor of young people, and many a future advertising career was inspired by a meeting with Rand. As a full time executive director, he understandably felt a responsibility to oversee all of the club’s activities. Unfortunately, this included the weekly magazine, the Advertising News. As noted earlier, this publication was produced by Tom Tierney, who headed his own publishing firm. For whatever reason now lost to time, Mr. Tierney did not agree with a change in editorial, or perhaps business, control of Ad News. But it was the Ad Club’s publication, and so Tierney withdrew, and in 1964 he launched a new publication called New England Advertising Week. The revenue available to the club from advertising in Ad News eventually shifted to Ad Week. The Ad News limped along for another few years, but with the appearance of yet another advertising publication, Ad East, in 1970, Ad News was put to rest. Ironically, New England Ad Week became the official publication of the Boston Ad Club in the early 1970’s, and the club news was printed in the magazine on a monthly basis for several years thereafter. Nevertheless, the decline of Ad News was one more financial blow which the Ad Club had to deal with in a very stressful, changing business environment with few available sources of revenue. Enthusiastic Leadership ​The financial difficulties the Ad Club faced in the 1960’s were not due to a lack of enthusiastic leadership from the presidents of those years: Jack Drummey, Lindy Layman, Bill Morton, and Harvey Cinamon. Luncheons were still the main source of regular activity, but gradually they became bi-monthly and then monthly affairs. The cohesiveness of the advertising community was breaking down as it was in society at large. “Doing your own thing” was the way to go at the time, and clubs, by their very nature, ask for self-sacrifice and service in a communitarian spirit.

An Executive Director or Not? ​By the end of the 1960’s it was clear that a fundamental decision had t be made regarding the future of the Advertising Club of Boston. Was it to continue to operate under the management of an executive director, or was it to revert back to its historical method of operation, namely, volunteer efforts by annually elected officers and directors? ​ The issue was joined at a board of directors meeting in 1969. Three presidents of the time-past, present, and future-Fred Davis, Dick Cullen, and Arthur Stickney, respectively, presented the case for a strong executive director. Those who opposed the idea were rightly concerned about the financial aspects of such management as well as whether the club was abandoning the volunteer spirit that had made it the significant institution it had become. By one vote that board meeting opted for hiring a new executive director. When Arthur Stickey assumed the presidency in the fall of 1969, the Advertising Club had a new executive director. His name was Paul McDermott. The Era of the Executive Director 1970-1994 ​The mandate for a new executive director was threefold: develop sources of revenue; diversify and expand membership; and create programs that would be responsive to a changing advertising business. The business of advertising, now often referred to as “communications,” was indeed undergoing major changes. ​ It may be too early to make a definite judgment, but the era of the 1970-90 may someday be referred to as the “golden age of advertising agencies.” The ad agency, as the heart of the advertising business, found itself in a position to be the most efficient and knowledgeable supplier of the ever expanding and diverse services demanded by the advertisers. ​ For example, the agency could develop the resources to deal with the multiplicity of media that by then blanketed the marketplace. The ad agency had been born to coordinate placement of advertising in the print media. By 1970, it had expanded its purview not only to the electronic media but to specialized forms of communication with customers such as direct mail and public relations. Meeting the Revenue Challenge ​The new executive director, Paul McDermott, working with various administrations, set about meeting the challenges of this changed environment. Finding and exploiting sources of revenue was a difficult task. One source that proved to be especially fertile was the Hatch Awards. In 1971, under President Jo Somers, the first woman president in the history of the club, the Hatch awards became the hatch show, elevating creativity in the New England advertising to the point that winning a Hatch Bowl became a nationally prestigious honor. Entries and attendance for the annual show skyrocketed during the seventies. ​ Education was another growth area for revenue. The Ad Club has always been involved with education since its inception, but those seeking to enter the business or improve their position within it had ever been greater. To this day the Ad Club remains intensely active in the development and promotion of its educational programs that were restructured to insure profitability during the 1970’s.

The Demise of the Regular Luncheon ​ rogramming under the executive directorship of McDermott became more P specialized in an effort to appeal to specific interests within the advertising community family. Seminars and “Days” devoted to single topics replace the luncheon concept. The weekly luncheons had gradually faded to bi-monthly and then simply sporadic affairs put together whenever an “interesting speaker” could be recruited. Ironically, this was the exact original prescription of the Ad Men’s Club in Boston in 1904. ​ r. McDermott took on the job of recruiting and diversifying membership with a M passion. The electronic media community was especially cultivated. During the seventies, the Ad Club encouraged agency chief executives to assume leadership roles which can be reflected in rollcall of presidents during those years: Richard “Doc” Lombardi; Richard S. Humphrey, grandson of Henry of 1911 fame; Jack Connors, Ed Eskandarian; Sharen Carr; and Thomas Mahoney. The Ad Club Auction ​ hese agency executives and those who followed them in the 1980’s were in a T prime position to wield the necessary influence with the media and supplier firms whose support for Ad Club programs was critical. The birth and the growth of the Ad Club Auction is a chief example. The Auction was established under the leadership of Jack Connors who possessed the power and prestige to create a function that has become and major source of revenue for the club. ​ When Paul McDermott departed from the Ad Club executive directorship in 1979, he and the officers and directors who served with him could take pride in the fact that they had met their mandate beyond all expectations. The club was financially sound and held a respected position in the community it served. ​ Bill Geary succeeded Paul McDermott as executive director. A politician by trade, Geary was closely allied with Governor Michael Dukakis, whom he served as appointments secretary. As executive director for nearly three years, Bill Geary brought an “outsiders” objective perspective to Ad Club management. He sharpened and streamlined procedures while advancing the programs, especially Hatch and the Auction, to new heights. When Dukakis was re-elected to a second term in 1982, Geary returned to the political arena eventually rising to M.D.C. Commissioner. The Elizabethan Age ​ he executive director, Elizabeth Graham Cook, had managed the Ad Club for T nearly 12 years. Her contribution left an indelible mark on the history of the Boston Ad Club. Elizabeth Cook and the administration under her tenure have focused the club on one of its most basic missions: its mission of leader in the community. In recent years, the Club’s strong professional staff of seven has been matched by the creative energies of past presidents such as Judy Downes; Bob Hoffman; Debbie Sina; John Verret; Fran Kelly; Joe Grimaldi. ​ The Ad Club of Greater Boston is today widely recognized for its public service initiatives. In 1987, in partnership with the Boston Foundation, the club established the Advertising Club Charitable Trust, now the Ad Club Foundation.

In 1993, the Trust reached $1 million which will fund programs that celebrate diversity in the workplace. ​ Arnold Rosoff, former president of the Ad Club, deserves special mention for his work in establishing the Foundation. Under the leadership of another former president, Richard “Bink” Garrison, the Foundation managed three programs: The Advertising Opportunities Program committed to developing a new generation of advertising and marketing professionals; Diversity Workshops aimed at creating a climate that values difference in the workplace; and the Ad Club Diversity Resource and Resume Bank that seeks to create diversity immediately. ​ As of this writing, the Ad Club of Greater Boston reports and aggregate membership of 7,500 individuals represented by 600 companies and a representative mailing list of 1,800, a figure that would have been unbelievable to Alan Wood when he rose to his feet to suggest the idea of the club in 1904. The leadership of the Club consists of 30 trustee member companies. ​ The club’s programs currently seek out and cultivate industry and political leaders for “leadership conversations” that bring the Ad Club and the advertising business into sharper focus in the public mind. Recent case studies have focused on New Media interactive technologies and outreach initiatives. The Continuing Education Program is burgeoning with 11 courses, 15 instructors, and over 200 students. ​


evolution... Great changes were in store for the advertising world -and the AdClub. Indeed, the word ‘advertising’ was being superseded by ‘Communications’ in the titles of many agencies here and worldwide as computers became the everyday tool of business and soon heralded in more, new technologies destined to change society itself. The Internet burst on to the scene, and the dot-com bubble and boom left its mark on a number of Boston agencies. Through these exciting but trying times, the AdClub under Eizabeth Cook, Bethany Kendall and Lisa Unsworth, continued to rally its members and gather the industry together at events like the Hatch Show, the Rosoff Awards and the Media Auction.


….And Revolution. As the digital age hit its stride, the AdCLub not only kept pace, but in many respects actually anticipated the technology innovations rapidly and radically changing the business and the world. In 2005 Kathy Kiely succeeded Lisa Unsworth and determined to further expand the AdClub’s reach and agenda. As noted earlier, its early tenets included being an advocate for the profession; a watchdog against misleading practices; an educator and developer of resources; a positive leader in the community and a provider of social bonding for the group it serves.

Though those principles still all apply, the AdClub’s mission evolved to connecting brands, technologies and people together so that all three might continue to thrive, progress and prosper. New events were added; the core staff was increased; the club moved and moved again, and membership continued to grow. To the perennial, iconic Hatch Awards, were added the EDGE Conference, Clinked In and Media Innovation Day, marking and celebrating new industry technologies; the CMO Breakfast Series and Big Orange Couch interviews which put the spotlight on client brand champions; the annual Women’s Leadership Forum recognizing the by now, many female industry leaders; and a host of other events including Sports Marketing, Golf outings even a pilgrimage to Fenway Park to welcome the Sox on their opening day each spring. In 2008, the club moved from Newbury Street to new digs in Hamilton Place next to the Beacon Theater where Kathy supervised the creation of a new brand identity centered around a bright orange logo, and a slogan {Are You In?} plus a new website and all kinds of social media capabilities to manage the club’s busy schedule and outreach. Just three years, later, the club moved again to its current location, a fantastic, domed space on Batterymarch street in the financial district where its full time staff of eight, supplemented by keen teams of interns, buzz like bees to keep the activities flowing. Today, the ongoing commitment and influence of the club is a harbinger that the Greater Boston area will continue to be a leading germination and incubation ground for communications innovations, and ensure the future success of brands and businesses built in Boston. And that will attract still more entrepreneurship to the area, further benefiting the economy and the people of the Commonwealth. The club has survived two world wars, a great depression and several serious recessions. It has seen the business it serves change from a coterie of a few men selling space in newspapers and magazines to a multi-faceted endeavor encompassing activities not yet dreamed of ninety years ago. Through it all, the club has learned the basic lesson of survival: learn and adapt. ​ Whatever the future may hold for the Boston Ad Club, it opens the door to the future in its 101st year stronger and more vital than it has ever been in history.


Past Presidents 1904-05 *Edgarton Chichester ​​​ 1954-55 *Paul H. Provandie 1905-06 *John Wesley Barber ​​​1955-56 Charles W.E. Morris 1906-07 *Marion V. Putnam ​​​1956-57 *Richard A. Berenson 1907-08 *William E. Hall​​​​ 1957-58 Philip E. Nutting 1908-09 *Tilton S. Bell ​​​​1958-59 Arnold N. Harkow 1909-11 *George W. Coleman ​​​ 1959- William J. Williamson 1911-12 *Henry B. Humphrey ​​​ 1959-61 *Frank S. Christian 1912-14 *Carroll J. Swan ​​​​1961-62 *James M. Connolly 1914-15 *Patrick F. O’Keefe ​​​1962-63 William Morton 1915-16 *George B. Gallop​​​ 1963-64 *Arthur F. Brown 1916-17 *Herbert G. Porter ​​​ 1964-65 A. Harvey Cinamon 1917-18 *Frank A. Black ​​​​1965-66 John A. Drummey 1918-19 *Harold F. Barber ​​​1966-67 Lendell A. Layman 1919-20 *Charles B. Marble​​​ 1967-68 Frederick J. Davis 1920-21 *George G. Frolich ​​​ 1968-69 Richard J. Cullen 1921-22 *Henry Kuhns ​​​​1969-70 Arthur E. Stickney 1922-24 *Chester I. Campbell ​​​ 1970-71 Jo Somers 1924-26 *William F. Rogers ​​​ 1971-72 Richard V. Lombardi 1926-27 *Patrick F. O’Keefe ​​​ 1972-73 Charles E. Jackson 1927-28 *Arthur J .Crockett ​​​1973-74 Richard S. Humphrey, Jr. 1928-29 *George A. Dunning​​​ 1974-75 Harold J. Turin 1929-31 *Louis D. Gibbs ​​​​1975-76 Michael C. Horn 1931-33 *Carroll J. Swan ​​​​1976-77 John M. Connors 1933-35 *Walter E. Myers​​​​ 1977-78 Edward Eskandarian 1935-36 *Allyn B. Mcintire ​​​1978-79 Sharen K. Carr 1936-37 *Philip J. McAteer​​​ 1979-80 Thomas J. Mahoney 1937-38 *Edmund S. Whitten​​​ 1980-81 Willard S. Taylor 1938-39 *Oliver M. Drummond ​​​1981-82 Arnold Z. Rosoff 1939-40 *Louis Glaser​​​​ 1982-83 *Charles T. Barr 1940-41 *Edwin E. Leason ​​​ 1983-84 Guy Conrad 1941-42 *John C. Nicodemus ​​​1984-85 Prudence B. Hay 1942-43 *Ernest Hoftyzer​​​​ 1985-86 Richard C. Harrison 1944-46 *Paul N. Swaffield ​​​1986-87 Judith B. Downes 1946-47 *George C. Wiswell​​​ 1987-88 *Gerald Broderick 1947-48 *Harrold E. Fellows​​​ 1988-89 J. Peter Rizzo 1948-49 *Carlton M. Strong ​​​1989-90 Robert Hoffman 1949-50 *J. Paul Hoag ​​​​ 1990-91 Deborah Sinay 1950-51 *Raymond C. Strawbridge ​​ 1991-92 John C. Verret 1951-52 Andrew C. Quale ​​​ 1992-93 Francis J. Kelly III 1952-53 Paul A. Newsome ​​​ 1993-94 Joe Grimaldi 1953-54 *Edward C. Donnelly, Jr. Very special thanks to our author and past president Charles E. Jackson For his many hours of research and writing of this history. * Deceased

THE ADVERTISING CLUB OF GREATER BOSTON A Centarian Perspective CELEBRATING OUR 100TH ANNIVERSARY 1913-2013 PAST PRESIDENTS 1904-05 *Edgarton Chichester ​​​1954-55 *Paul H. Provandie 1905-06 *John Wesley Barber 1955-56 ​​​ Charles W.E. Morris 1906-07 *Marion V. Putnam ​​​1956-57 *Richard A. Berenson 1907-08 *William E. Hall​​​​1957-58 Philip E. Nutting 1908-09 *Tilton S. Bell 1958-59 ​​​​ Arnold N. Harkow 1909-11 *George W. Coleman ​​​1959- William J. Williamson 1911-12 *Henry B. Humphrey ​​​1959-61 *Frank S. Christian 1912-14 *Carroll J. Swan ​​​​1961-62 *James M. Connolly 1914-15 *Patrick F. O’Keefe ​​​1962-63 William Morton 1915-16 *George B. Gallop​​​1963-64 *Arthur F. Brown 1916-17 *Herbert G. Porter ​​​1964-65 A. Harvey Cinamon 1917-18 *Frank A. Black 1965-66 ​​​​ John A. Drummey 1918-19 *Harold F. Barber 1966-67 ​​​ Lendell A. Layman 1919-20 *Charles B. Marble​​​1967-68 Frederick J. Davis 1920-21 *George G. Frolich ​​​1968-69 Richard J. Cullen 1921-22 *Henry Kuhns ​​​​1969-70 Arthur E. Stickney 1922-24 *Chester I. Campbell ​​​1970-71 Jo Somers 1924-26 *William F. Rogers 1971-72 ​​​ Richard V. Lombardi 1926-27 *Patrick F. O’Keefe ​​​1972-73 Charles E. Jackson 1927-28 *Arthur J .Crockett ​​​1973-74 Richard S. Humphrey, Jr. 1928-29 *George A. Dunning​​​1974-75 Harold J. Turin 1929-31 *Louis D. Gibbs 1975-76 ​​​​ Michael C. Horn 1931-33 *Carroll J. Swan ​​​​1976-77 John M. Connors 1933-35 *Walter E. Myers​​​​1977-78 Edward Eskandarian 1935-36 *Allyn B. Mcintire ​​​1978-79 Sharen K. Carr 1936-37 *Philip J. McAteer​​​1979-80 Thomas J. Mahoney 1937-38 *Edmund S. Whitten​​​1980-81 Willard S. Taylor 1938-39 *Oliver M. Drummond ​​​1981-82 Arnold Z. Rosoff 1939-40 *Louis Glaser​​​​1982-83 *Charles T. Barr 1940-41 *Edwin E. Leason ​​​1983-84 Guy Conrad 1941-42 *John C. Nicodemus ​​​1984-85 Prudence B. Hay 1942-43 *Ernest Hoftyzer​​​​1985-86 Richard C. Harrison 1944-46 *Paul N. Swaffield 1986-87 ​​​ Judith B. Downes 1946-47 *George C. Wiswell​​​1987-88 *Gerald Broderick 1947-48 *Harrold E. Fellows​​​1988-89 J. Peter Rizzo 1948-49 *Carlton M. Strong ​​​1989-90 Robert Hoffman 1949-50 *J. Paul Hoag 1990-91 ​​​​ Deborah Sinay 1950-51 *Raymond C. Strawbridge 1991-92 ​​ John C. Verret 1951-52 Andrew C. Quale ​​​1992-93 Francis J. Kelly III 1952-53 Paul A. Newsome ​​​1993-94 Joe Grimaldi 1953-54 *Edward C. Donnelly, Jr. Very special thanks to our author and past president Charles E. Jackson For his many hours of research and writing of this history. * Deceased

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