Band Box - Friday, October 9, 2015

The American Treasure Tour displays many, many cool things.  Many.  Some of them get a little lost among the treasures, we're sorry to say.  But we're equally happy to draw attention to them here on the blog!  Today, we explore the Chicago Coin's Band Box.  Over six hundred of these entertaining pieces were produced between 1950 and 1952, and passionate collectors keep surviving samples alive with the help of Brad Frank Restorations, Inc., who currently own the name and serve as the premier restorer of these delightful creations.

The first thing you need to properly experience the Band Box is a jukebox.  These mechanical marvels would be installed in the wall, usually above the jukebox.  After a coin is inserted in the jukebox and the songs selected, the curtains on the Band Box open up as the lights go on. Inside, a seven-piece band begins 'playing music.' ultimately serving as a glamorous speaker. The band members are dressed in either green, blue or (rarest) white uniforms as they move along with the music.  The American Treasure Tour has three of these in our collection - with one of them playing along with our calliope in the Toy Box.  Be sure to check them out!
UESTION:  Where is the current home of Chicago Coin located?
A)  Chicago, IL
B)  Los Angeles, CA
C)  Philadelphia, PA
D)  New York City, NY
ANSWER BELOW

TURNING BAD INTO GOOD.  If you are unfamiliar with the story of Roger Williams, it's time to get reading.  He came to the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1631 - he was 28 at the time - but started getting into trouble pretty quickly.  He didn't see eye-to-eye with the Puritan leaders and was kinda sorta kicked out.  In fact, his banishment happened on this day in 1634.  So what did he do?  He established what would become Rhode Island.  The message here is this:  if you make a stink and get kicked out of the popular club, start your own colony!  Easy peasy.

LOOKING BACK AT BOK.  Celebrating his birthday today is a guy most Americans have never heard of, but who's had an impact on all of our lives:  Edward Bok.  Born in Holland in 1863, he immigrated to the United States when he was six (we suppose his family came with him), and got into the publication industry as a young man.  In fact, at 26, he became editor of the Ladies' Home Journal, a position he held for three decades.  How did he impact us today? He is accredited with first coining the name 'living room' for a place in every home.  Pretty cool, right?  Happy birthday, Ed!

QUOTE:  Make the world a bit better or more beautiful because you have lived in it. - Edward Bok

ANSWER:  B)  Los Angeles, CA.  Obviously.