heartland_Label_rot.jpg        cultural studies in the heartland of america

Star Soap Trading Cards

Volume 23: Marie-Luise Fricke (2010): Star Soap Trading Cards

Heartland 23 / WVT 2010

ISBN 978-3-86821-196-2

€ 18,00 $ 25,00


The Gilded Age in American history, which followed the American Civil War and Reconstruction eras, is said to be the heyday of American business. This time is characterized by changes brought by the Industrial Revolution, business and technical progress, along with great waves of immigration. A number of these immigrants became famous and rich and considerably changed the American society. These individuals demonstrated that a combination of business skill, courage and hard work could lead to enormous success. Along the success stories of wealthy and famous entrepreneurs are also found the tales of business losses, mismanagement and financial depressions.

The city of Zanesville, Ohio provides examples of several businesses which advanced dramatically in a relatively short period of time. In this cultural examination, emphasis is put on the Zanesville soap manufacturer Schultz & Co. The first part of the work is devoted to the company history and the reconstruction of the owners’ biographies, since Robert D. Schultz and John Hoge were both extraordinarily successful entrepreneurs and the latter was among the most influential and flamboyant personalities in the nineteenth century American Midwest. Hoge also had a knack for special ideas and advertising strategies, and Schultz & Co. was among the first companies to issue trading cards to extol their products. A sample of these Star Soap trading cards will be interpreted in the second part of the work, taking into consideration the cards’ design, hidden meanings and advertising purposes.


165 pp., 89 images



Table of Contents

0 Introduction 3

1 Purpose and objectives 5

1.1 Historical context  5

1.2 Comment on research  6

1.3 Cultural studies and translation  7

2 Schultz and Co. – the soap manufactory  9

2.1 Schultz family history  9

2.1.1 William Schultz  10

2.1.2 Robert Doster Schultz  11

2.1.3 William Darlington Schultz 13

2.2 John Hoge  16

2.2.1 Hoge family history  16

2.2.2 The entrepreneur John Hoge  17

2.2.3 The Schultz Opera House 23

2.3 Schultz and Co. – history and development 29

2.3.1 Soap boiling 34

2.3.2 Advertising strategies 37

2.3.3 Procter and Gamble 42

2.4 History of the city of Zanesville  49

3 Trading cards  53

3.1 Justus Liebig  53

3.2 Trading cards – motifs and meaning  59

3.2.1 Shakespeare trading cards  64

3.2.2 Justus Liebig trading cards 69

3.3 Trading cards as an advertising strategy  74

3.4 Collecting – then and now 81

4 Analysis of the Star Soap trading cards  85

4.1 Purpose and objectives of the analysis  85

4.2 Explanation of the interpretation categories  85

4.3 Analysis  87

4.3.1 Analysis of other trading cards  111

4.3.2 Analysis of the Star Rhymes brochures  117

4.4 Synthesis  141

5 Conclusion  158

6 Annex 160

6.1 Bibliography 160

6.1.1 Newspaper articles 161

6.1.2 Internet sources  161

6.2 Table of Images 163



Single price: 18,00 EUR