Alert (and archive-minded) “06880” reader Fred Cantor found a Christmas ad from the December 6, 1950 Wilton Bulletin.
I have no idea what he was looking for, but what he found is fascinating. Exactly 63 years ago today, Wilton residents were urged to
shop in Westport for an old-fashioned Christmas in a new-fashioned town. Choose from an abundance of perfect gifts for every member of the family in the delightful atmosphere of small town service and big city selection.
Next to a drawing of a stereotypical ’50s nuclear family — Dad in tie, Mom in a serving role, girl and boy looking appropriately wonderful — the text described the “streamlined shopping center that is Westport.”
Because Westport is the biggest small town in the world with some pretty smart people living in it, Christmas treasure hunters expect New York selection and get it, but no New York hurly-burly, just genial “hello neighbor” friendliness.
But wait! There’s more!
Westport, we learn, “has grown — from a sleepy whistle stop to a shopping center teeming with sophisticated gift ideas for the exacting giver.”
Our storekeepers have the know-how to keep the prices as attractive as the gifts. Walk up and down Main Street, bask in the Christmas spirit spilling from shop windows, turn into Sherwood [Sconset] Square, then up and down State Street [Post Road], along Taylor Place, over the State Street bridge, into the hills of Weston, and up the Post Road.
That Weston reference lost me. But read on…
Wherever you go, you don’t have to look for a friendly face, they’re looking for you. Fair Exchange in Westport. Trade in tired weary days of city shopping for a joyous Christmas season country style shopping in Westport.
The 1950 ad was sponsored by the “Westport & Weston Merchants Association.”
Participating businesses — including the Dress Box, Westport Hardware, Isabel Eland, Achorn’s Pharmacy, Townley Restaurant, Tracey’s Men’s Wear, Welch’s Hardware, The Music Room, Sport Mart, Paint Bucket, Greenberg’s Department Store, Fairfield Furniture and Towne Television — were “Open Nitely Till Nine.”