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Streetcar Advertising in America
The streetcar advertising era of 100 years ago was a pivotal period in American history that would ultimately determine many of the consumer brands and products that we enjoy today.
You might be surprised to learn that many of the consumer brands and products we enjoy today exist because of streetcar advertising. The Industrial Revolution of the early 1900’s and a massive consumer audience riding over 50,000 streetcars in nearly 3,000 cities and towns in every state of the union provided a great opportunity for Barron Collier, a native of Memphis, Tennessee. He simply used streetcar advertising to bring these two forces together and created the largest streetcar advertising empire in the world. By age twenty-six, he was a millionaire and at one time had business offices in 70 cities with business interests in more than a thousand cities.
In addition, Barron Collier would go on to own over 1.3 million acres of land in Florida and become one of the wealthiest men in America.
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