Tag Archives: Lajoie Guide

Lost Advertisements–“Lajoie Endorses Heptol Splits”

9 May

lajoieheptol

Cleveland Naps second baseman Napoleon Lajoie appeared in as many advertisements as any of his contemporaries during his career, including one for a “sparkling laxative.” This is a 1906 advertisement for Heptol Splits “The only perfect Laxative.”

“Gentlemen:  I am constantly worried, while traveling over the circuit, by drinking impure water or eating something that disagrees with me, because in either event I am liable to be laid up for several days and deprive my team of my service.  I have found that the best thing to overcome the ill effects of either, is to take, before breakfast, a bottle of Heptol Splits.  I have taken it innumerable times and its results have always been most satisfactory.  It is especially good during the early training season, and I consider it the only perfect laxative water on the market.”

The image of the cowboy on the bronco used for Heptol Splits’ logo was created by artist Charles Marion Russell.

Lajoie’s endorsement does not appear to have done much good for the brand which appears to have disappeared from drug store shelves within a couple of years.

A version of the advertisement appeared in the inaugural, 1906 edition of Napoleon Lajoie’s Official Base Ball Guide— an attempt  to compete with the Spalding and Reach Guides.

The 1906 Lajoie Guide

The 1906 Lajoie Guide

 

The Cleveland Press said upon the publication of the 1906 guide:

“”Lajoie’s Guide is especially interesting because it is the first work of this kind that has ever been attempted by a ball player while still in active service on the diamond…Lajoie is the champion batsman of the world and a great authority on the national game.  His book should find a ready sale.”

When Lajoie’s Guide ceased publication after the 1908 edition The Press said:

“After two years as editor of the American League Publishing Company, getting out the Lajoie Guide, he declares the others are too strong for competition, and only farm life for him in the winter months from now on.”

Lost Advertisements–Ready! Lajoie Baseball Guide

25 Oct

lajoieguide

Above is a 1906 advertisement for an Atlanta hardware store offering the inaugural edition of “Napoleon Lajoie‘s Baseball Guide.”  The Lajoie Guide was intended to compete with the well established Spalding and Reach Guides, and sold for 10 cents, but despite Lajoie’s popularity the guide failed to catch on and was only published for three years.

In addition to the standard recap of professional baseball leagues across the country, and many photos, the Lajoie guide included a significant amount of information specific to its name sake.  An advertisement for the Cincinnati-based Queen City Tobacco Company said:

Lajoie Chews Red Devil Tobacco

Ask him if he don’t

reddevil

Grantland Rice wrote for the guide, and the first edition included a Rice-penned poem called “For Lajoie’s in Town:”

We’ve gazed on Mr. Roosevelt,

Who rules this whole wide land.

We’ve looked at Carrie Nation, 

And shook Jim Corbett’s hand

We’ve eaten bread with Robert Fitz

And chummed with George Tebeau.

We’ve drank out beer with Mr. Schlitz.

Great notable we know.

We’ve interviewed Friend Morgan,

Thrown talk at old John D.

We’ve opened wine with Sullivan

And seen Prince Hennery.

King Edward is a bosom pal,

Langtry our school-day girl.

Dick Croker smiles in our face,

We’ll give Boss Fame a whirl

*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *

Around the shrine of heroes

There’s little we’ve not seen.

We’ve talked to all, both great and small,

Of high and lowly mien.

But this group pales beneath the looks

Of one of far renown.

Hats off!The greatest comes today,

For Lajoie’s in town.

T. Roosevelt’s backed off the boards,

A plater is king Ed.

Langtry a chorus lady now,

The others are all dead.

For Lajoie, pride of several leagues!

Lajoie, the mighty man!

Lajoie, his bat and fielding glove

Knocks out the wholes blamed clan.

The 1906 Lajoie Guide

The 1906 Lajoie Guide