Saturday, January 11, 2014

Prince Albert In The Can

Most kids these days have probably never heard of the old trick of calling the store to see if they had Prince Albert in the can. They're probably also too sophisticated to consider it amusing when the reply to the affirmative answer was a command to let him out. In fact, most of them have probably never even heard of Prince Albert—either the man or the tobacco. Their loss, I guess.

The flat little cans have been used as wallets and bait boxes, for holding fishing kits, fire-starting kits, first-aid kits and for a host of other things. The ones in the picture were used by a man named Lyss Fleming in Volcano, West Virginia to hold a collection of screws, small bolts, nuts and rivets. Alas, anything that useful MUST be done away with. It’s some kind of law, I think.

Regardless, here are a couple pictures to bring back some memories for my fellow old geezers and geezerettes. I think the can on the left is the oldest. Ah yes, I remember them well! © 2014

Cick image to enlarge.


Tewshooz said...

Yep, remember that, too. The store owners always obliged us by answering "yes" to that question. They knew the joke, too. Good times. Thanks for the memory

Sunnybrook Farm said...

I have some of those as well as larger cans. They would also call someone and ask if their refrigerator was running... and ask the lady if she did laundry... it goes on and on. No batteries needed just abuse of the party line. Now that is another unbelievable thing, sharing a phone line with several families.

Gorges Smythe said...

You're welcome, Tewshooz; menories are precious things.

I remember party lines, too, SF. In fact, I did a post on them once.

Chickenmom said...

Those and band-aid tins! And how about bath powder tins that had the little neck on the top with three holes in it to shake the powder out!
Ah, the good old days!

Gorges Smythe said...

Yep, I've carried fishing worms in Band-aid tins, Cm!

Lady Locust said...

Claims were staked in the California mountains so many years ago with those cans. I found one stashed in rocks when I was a youngin. It had a paper in it detailing the perimiters of the claim. That was pretty cool. I think my folks still have it in a box somewhere. Also it was what my Gpa smoked in his pipe so I always think of him when I see "P.A."

Gorges Smythe said...

That's interesting about the claim, LL. I had an uncle that smoked a pipe, But I don't thunk Prince Albert was normally his brand. I'll always remember him sitting in his lazy-boy, the smoke curling around his head as he watched the TV. He was normally an active fellow, but he was usually in the chair when I visited.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

I remember this one plus asking if someone's refrigerator is running (and then telling them they better run quick to catch it) and all sort of other jokes- back before caller id!

Gorges Smythe said...

Technology opened some doors and closed others, Kathy! :-)