Home / General / Richmond Has Fallen!

Richmond Has Fallen!


In comments yesterday, heckblazer alerted me to this brilliance of 1865 advertising.


That is now one of my favorite advertisements of all time. Can’t wait to use it in a class.

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  • rea

    From the poem above the ad, which appears to envision a peculiar national unity:

    Here’s defiance to tyrants across the blue sea!
    They shall quake at the names of Grant, Sherman, and Lee!
    Now that Richmond has fallen

    The intersquad scrimmage is over; now for the real game!

    • jim, some guy in iowa

      i dunno, kinda seems prescient as much as peculiar

      • rea

        Well, we were on the brink of war with Napoleon III at the time, but sending Sheridan and 50,000 men to Texas was enough to deal with the matter

        • Ahenobarbus

          Oooh, Napoleon III. You don’t want to be on the wrong side of him in a war. Oh wait, you do.

          • Hogan

            Unless you’re Austria-Hungary, in which case you are by definition the wrong side of any war.

            • Matt_L

              Karl Krause or another such Viennese wag once said, “Good news, the K.u.K. army won another battle, how much territory will victory cost us this time?”

          • rea

            Back in ’65 or ’66, the French were still regarded as having the best army in Europe. The Prussians hadn’t beat anyone more formidable than Denmark recently.

        • jim, some guy in iowa

          i was thinking a little farther down the line, where we find ourselves erecting monuments and naming bases, etc, after the men who led the losing side. it’s odd when you consider america’s usual distaste for losers

          • patrick II

            You think they lost in the longer term?

    • wca

      Let’s conquer Canada!

  • wca

    Interesting bit of text at the top of that ad …

    Here’s rest to the fallen, in sight of her […]
    Here’s peace to the country, and union at last
    More firmly annealed by the fire of the past!
    Here’s to the Continent, God’s gift to the free!
    Here’s defiance to tyrants across the blue sea!
    They shall quake at the names of Grant, Sherman and Lee!
    Now that Richmond has fallen!

  • Woodrowfan

    damn, I want to develop a new class just to have an excuse to use it!!! Thanks Heckblazer!!!

    • ThrottleJockey

      History class: America has always been consumerist.

  • Andrew

    “Can’t wait to use it in a class.”

    A visual that fine deserves to be shared across the internet.

    May I suggest: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sons-of-Confederate-Veterans-Official/149308815083112

    • God, what a cesspool of sedition.

  • Honoré De Ballsack

    I wonder, did they run ads in a similar vein throughout the war?

    1861: “Western Hall Clothing House Secedes from the Tyranny of High Prices”

    1863: “Western Hall Clothing House is in Open Rebellion, Fighting for the Right to Affordable Menswear”

    1864: “Fire In Atlanta — Not as Hot as the Deals at Western Hall Clothing House.”

    • Hogan

      Fort Pillow has been taken, and now we’re massacring prices!

    • Malaclypse

      Sic Semper Pretia!

    • ThrottleJockey

      1863: Emancipate these clothes from our store!

      1864: Come get these goods before Sherman does!

      1865: (Gently) used stovepipe hat sale (1 small bullet hole)

  • SgtGymBunny

    Well, one can never let a crisis go to waste in advertising, right?

    • ThrottleJockey

      Mad, mad men!

  • matt w

    T-Rex was on this.

  • Ahuitzotl

    The end of the world is nigh!
    so is the end of our sale,
    so hurry hurry hurry!

  • Captain Bringdown

    I can’t help being reminded of W’s stirring call for Americans to go shopping after 9/11. Plus ça change, …

  • Joseph Slater

    Would it be hyperbole to consider this one of the greatest things ever? I don’t think so.

  • mikeSchilling

    My previous favorite ad of all time:

    “Doctor, I’m afraid the patient is dead.”
    “Not as dead as this cigarette!”

    • postmodulator
      • Pseudonym

        Dumbify the quotes and it appears to refer to a skit by Hudson & Landry.

        • Hogan

          Have you taken his pulse?
          We’ve done everything doctor, I don’t think there’s much hope…
          His pulse is very weak, I don’t think he’s going to make it.
          Can you get me some plasma, perhaps some plasma would help quick…
          Never mind, never mind. its too late, he’s dead.
          Not as dead as these cigarettes.

        • mikeSchilling

          Thank you! I knew the bit was from that era, but not who did it.

  • Gwen

    Does anyone know the exact provenance of this?

    Twitter says Chicago Times, probably some day in April 1865.

  • Mike G

    Right now in Australia there’s a stink about a grocery store exploiting the upcoming centenary of the Gallipoli campaign. Their slogan is the “The Fresh Food People” and they used an image of a WW1 soldier with the tag “Fresh in our memories”. Classy.

  • Funkhauser
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