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Box for Fitch's "Ideal" Hair Tonic
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Object ID 002778

Object Name Box for Fitch's "Ideal" Hair Tonic

Object Desc Gold cardboard box originally containing a 5 ounce bottle of Fitch's "Ideal" hair tonic.

Collection General Collection

Accession # CMY002541

Alternate ID

General Category History

Category Personal Care


Source Category Found In Collection

Accession Date JAN 1,1991


Location Bay View Pharmacy

Object Date

Start Year Range 1915

End Year Range 1949

Status On Exhibit

Object Keywords tonic,personal care,Fitch's Products,haircare,

Title Box for Fitch's "Ideal" Hair Tonic

Description Gold colored cardboard box with brown and orange stripe near bottom. Box originally contained a 5 ounce bottle of Fitch's "Ideal" hair tonic. Box is printed in brown ink and has suggestions for use, a Good Housekeeping seal, and a list of awards granted to Fitch Products in 1911, 1913, and 1915. Top and bottom box flaps also printed with the words "Fitch's "IDEAL" HAIR TONIC."


Approx Collection Date

Height 6

Length 0

Width 2

Depth 2

Diameter 0

Circumference 0

Weight 0

Unit of Measure Inches/ounces

Dimension Details

Quantity 1



Site Details

Place of Origin

Maker F. W. Fitch Manufacturing Company

Maker Details Fred W. Fitch, a savvy businessman, is one of Iowa's best-known rags-to-riches stories. The one-time barber became a millionaire because Americans, then as now, fretted about their hair. His first product was a hair tonic labeled "Ideal Hair Grower and Dandruff Cure," although Fitch soon dropped the hair-growing claim. In 1892, at 22, he founded the F.W. Fitch Co. in a barn in Boone, where he had his own barbershop. An expert salesman who thrived during long days on the road, Fitch initially targeted his products to barbershops. In 1917, Fitch moved his operations to Des Moines, building his four-story plant at 15th and Walnut streets. In the 1930s and '40s, the name Fitch was a household word throughout the nation, not only because of the 40-plus hair-care products and cosmetics that Fitch manufactured, but also because of the popular radio show he sponsored, "The Fitch Bandwagon." Company was sold in 1949.

Maker Mark


(click for full image)

Image Caption CMY2541



Date OCT 30,2014

Summary Excellent

Assessor Molly Hannan

Notes Box is in excellent condition with virtually no edge wear.