Everyday Life – Popular Consumer Products and Services Marketed in the Philippines in the 1920’s and 1930’s (Part one of two-the 1920’s)

(Source: AmCham Journals 1921 thru 1929)

The 1920

Following the end of World War One (November 1918) America entered a decade of unprecedented prosperity. It came to be known as “The Roaring 20’s”. Optimism was high – business boomed. Exciting new technologies “Talking-Machines”(Phonographs), Radio Transmission Sets and “Talking Movies” were all the talk. An energetic dance “the Charleston” defined the mood. America’s Asian colony the Philippines, caught the fever. Manila’s main shopping street, the Escolta, was fast becoming Americanized, along with adjacent Juan Luna Financial District. New middle-class subdivisions sprouted up in San Juan and Sta Mesa.

Leading American Commercial and Banking companies of the 1920’s

  • International Banking Corp (Citibank)
  • Pacific Commercial Co (General Motors Cars and Trucks)
  • Heacock’s Department Store
  • Beck’s Department Store
  • Botica Boie – Pharmaceuticals
  • Erlanger and Galinger Office Equipment
  • Sanitary Steam Laundry
  • Hike Shoe Co.
  • SOCONY (Standard Oil of New York) – Energy

In the retail field successful business models called for securing exclusive distributorships for popular American and European products, Many firms were led and staffed by Americans who came to the Philippines as employees of the Colonial Government or as military men. Some prospered. Many did not and returned home. The America Chamber of Commerce Monthly Journal,  was a leading publication targeted at the American Community. .Its readers extended throughout the archipelago. Because of its wide reach many firms advertised. Enjoy the brief selection of ads selected from hundreds 1920 thru 1929.-BB