Spoiling the Broth Bill Jones Poster 1920's

Vintage Spoiling the Broth Bill Jones Poster 1920’s, This is an original motivational poster from the 20’s, it measures approx. 22″x28″.

Motivational posters of the 1920s told you to pull your socks up.

These motivational posters from the 1920s encouraged punctuality, good self-care, courtesy and teamwork with poster titles include phrases ‘think before you act’, ‘knowalls never learn’ and ‘self control earns much praise’. They were made on a subscription basis for business owners to display and disseminate to their employees

Anyone struggling to stick to their New Year’s resolutions could perhaps turn to bold motivational posters from the 1920s which encouraged workers to pull their socks up, grin and bear it.

The posters are the epitome of positivity with titles including ‘think before you act’, ‘knowalls never learn’ and ‘self control earns much praise.’

The now-defunct print company Parker-Holladay was one producer of the vibrant placards, which were made on a subscription basis for business owners to display and disseminate to their employees.

Bill Jones, a fictional character created by Parker-Holladay, encouraged punctuality, good self-care, courtesy and teamwork among a raft of other virtues helping to instill best practice and positive mental attitude in the workplace and beyond.

But while they were popular in their day, the striking posters fell from favour following the Wall Street Crash and the ensuing Great Depression of 1929. Although these original posters and cards were created to motivate workers–and from the looks of it, men exclusively–the Rockwell Museum points out that they speak to the progressive Arts and Crafts movement, which involved interior decoration, household taste, and lifestyle choices. Not only did families crochet mottos like “Idle hands are the devil’s playthings” to be framed above the mantelpiece, entrepreneurs pre-sold similar items.

“Let’s Get It Right: Work Incentive Posters of the 1920s” at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History will explore how employers encouraged their workforce. Opening July 27 through November 2018 in the Archives Center Gallery, the display will feature 16 posters with images and sayings designed to influence attitudes, reduce conflict and increase efficiency.