Journal Rug Play (original Felt Town article)

I wanted to see if I could track down the original Felt Town article in a Ladies Home Journal back issue based on what little information I had. That it appeared on back page of the issue from (Gram’s interview) and that Anne received one (she thinks) when she was six years old in 1951.

It was not able to search online back dated issues earlier than the 1970’s, so I went to the big main public library in downtown Santa Monica.

I asked the periodicals representative how to search for the information an as it turned out pretty much every issue ever printed is available in bound volumes on the library’s periodical shelves. This seemed both a blessing and a curse. I felt confident that I would indeed find the article, but that it might take looking through hundreds of issues in the search. Luck for me my son Jack was along and eager to help in the search.

I decided to start by using the information I had, just looking at the last few pages of each issue over say a five year period starting in 1950.

After a few issues it was clear that the back page, or close to it, always had a project that was “felt town-esque”, a quilt or some other home made knitting project. This got me excited. A few times I even though, could this be the article? It is not felt town, but perhaps Grams had engineered Felt Town based on just a quilt design. Of course I could not have been more wrong.

1949, nothing
1950, nothing
1951, It was taking time and I had to get back home so this was the last year I was going to go through. It was not looking good adn I figured I would come back and look through every page of every issue I had already gone through and I saw this:

(here is the article in total)

Ladies Home Journal
November, 1951

This felt play rug of a small village inspires a stimulating game for youngsters from two to ten. It is a game that children can play together or by themselves.

Journal Play Rug…

An Enchanting and Lasting Christmas Present

From the tender age of two, cars, airplanes, fire engines and boats are objects of curious, wondering eyes. The association of boats and water, planes with the sky, trains with tracks is just one of the wonderful discoveries of early childhood. The difference between a coal car and a steam shovel, a fire engine and a tractor, is quick noticed, and their individual duties become part of a child’s play. Our Journal play rug has roads, railroad tracks, a river, a lake,an airport and a gas station…all scaled for small toy toys available in dine stores throughout the country. It is an object of constructive play…everyday life. A youngster can live in this little town in his own imaginative way. He can get gas at the station, go to the lake to sail his boat, and to the station to catch strain. It’s fun on rainy days, wonderful for a shut-in because because it can be placed on a bed. Also it is decorative as a wall decoration in a playroom. By Nora O’Leary

This rug has been designed for easy sewing. It measures 36″ by 54″. It is simple appliqué stitch of felt on felt. We have arranged for you to buy all the materials (two layers of green felt for rug and all necessary amounts of other colors used in the decorations) in a complete package for $8.95 from Fun-With-Felt, 215 Middle Neck Road, Great Neck, N.Y. Send for Journal Pattern No. 2584, 25cents which includes chart and instructions for cutting and making. Use coupon on Page 26.

Scaled for dime-store toys,, the rug can be equipped with everything from lamp posts to animals on the farm. Boats, fire engines and planes also have their places.

Here is the article as it appear in color and ready from printing.

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