I often think about items from our culture that have quietly disappeared, almost without our being aware of them: wall phones and pay phone banks, point & shoot cameras, match books, wrist watches, pastures of Holsteins, cabooses, transistor radios, daily newspapers, packing a lunch or sewing clothes because it's economical, doing dishes in the sink, libraries...a thousand things that didn't always make life better, just familiar.
The process is genealogically useful, after all, as you can date a photo or movie by what's included or not. I can usually tell what year a Buckman family photo was taken if it was before 1950 or so, but even 1980 or 1990 pics look dated these days ☺
In 1939, Orlinda Janson (my mom ☺) and some friends took a train trip to The Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco.
It was an organized tour group, and cost each of them $200.
Mom always said it was held on "Mare Island", but it wasn't. I suppose tours of Mare Island Naval Shipyard and LA's Santa Catalina Island were included, tho, and they got all vanvickled (verwickelt) in her head. Anyway, we loved the stories, and she visited with those friends for years.
So, what's a matchbook? Back then, practically everybody smoked cigarettes, anywhere, anytime. In restaurants, hospitals, grocery stores, trains and buses, anywhere people were...and a book of 20 matches was handed to you with the pack of cigs at the store. Certainly free matches were available at tourist attractions. Most had advertising on the outside.
Looks like Mom tired of matchbook collecting after only 15 books ☺