Mail pouch tobacco

Have you ever seen a Mail Pouch Tobacco Barn? We have several within driving distance of the farm. I collect locations in the same way that others collect China Tea Cups or Matchbooks. [The following has been taken, in part, from Wikipedia.] Mail Pouch Barns were painted between 1890 and 1992 as advertisements for the West Virginia Mail Pouch chewing tobacco company. At the height of the program there were nearly 20,000 Mail Pouch barns spread across 22 states. Initially, barn owners were paid one or two dollars a year for the advertisement, equivalent in 1913 dollars to $20 – $40 today. More importantly, barns received a fresh coat of paint. Mail Pouch painted their message on one or two sides of the barn and painted the other sides of the barn any color the owner wished. Many of the barns were repainted every few years to maintain the sharpness of the lettering. The Highway Beautification Act of 1965, which sought to restrict the vast number of local advertisements that were being placed near highways, exempted Mail Pouch barns since they had been deemed historic landmarks.

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