Wednesday, December 1, 2021

#140 - Antique Magazines Club

#140 Blog Post – Wednesday, December 1, 2021


Posted by Denny Hatch


Drop-dead Glorious Advertisement

Discovered in a 90-year-old Magazine.



Above is a fascinating antique—the cover of Fortune Magazine’s Issue #1—the Premier Launch number. It was sent to me out of the blue. I did not order it. I did not expect it. When I opened the package it was obviously the real deal—a giant, oversized authentic 11” x 14” original of 184 pages—not a reprint. A behemoth! A jewel!


Amazingly, it’s 90 years old!


I was stunned!


As founder and proprietor of the WHO’S MAILING WHAT! newsletter and archive service I received tens of thousands of unsolicited mailings over 30 years. But never a treasure like this!


The first thing I did was Google used magazines for sale and discovered one guy selling this issue for $225! This was emphatically not a piece of junk mail I was going to throw away!


The Back Story of This Mind-blowing $225 Gift

The sender was long-time acquaintance and colleague Mitchell Davis, a polymath—a walking, talking bundle of PR and business knowhow, in touch with thousands of leading executives and journalists as well as being the propagator of thousands of news releases. His CV:


Editor and Publisher of the Yearbook of Experts, Authorities & Spokespersons


Director General of the International Platform Association, the speakers’ association founded by Daniel Webster in 1831.


Founder of The News Council that enables nonprofit groups to use the power of networking free of charge.


In the first 20 years of my checkered career, I ran book clubs, started a book club and worked on a number of continuity series. I know precisely how clubs and continuity series work, as well as the arithmetic and the formula for profitability. Here’s Mitch’s deal:


Historic Magazine Subscription Service

• Sign up and receive an historic magazine each month billed at $7.95 (or $79 annual) or one a week for $5.95 (billed monthly at $23.80 or $238 annual).

• Cancel any time for a full refund on un-mailed issues.

• Four choices of historic magazines: (1) Selection of all magazines without Playboy or…  (2) All magazines including men’s magazines or… (3) Fortune only for $295 a year or… (4) Playboy only for $195 a year.

The Free Sample issue enclosed is a gift for you to keep—no strings attached.




I immediately emailed Mitch, told him:

(1) I would subscribe.

(2) I wanted to do blog post on the new service. I asked who was his book club consultant? Who was his backer—or what organization was he working with?


On receipt of my email, Mitch phoned me. This is entirely his idea. He is his own consultant. He dreamed it up, researched the second hand magazine business, decided to launch the service and wrote his own copy.


Mitch was thrilled to hear from me. “I sent out one mailing and you responded,” he said. “That’s a 100% response!”


It turns out Mitch had sent me an absolute treasure!


I Opened Fortune Issue #1, and Discovered

The Lede Ad on Page Three Is a Masterpiece!



Here’s the text of the above ad:






Whether you are a Californian for one month a year or twelve, you can pack more of the Coast’s pleasures into each busy day with a plane—especially if it’s a COMMUTER.


   With this versatile Keystone-Loening Amphibian, you take off and alight with equal ease on land or water. Every port becomes an airport, every ranch a landing field. Lake Tahoe is as accessible to you as Grand Central Airport.


   Get your party together—the roomy cabin of the Commuter seats four, sociably, with plenty of space for golf bags, guns or tackle. Touch the starter and the engine whirrs into action. Skim the water or the turf a few seconds, then soar into the sunshine at a thousand feet a minute.


   Go up five, ten, even fifteen thousand feet. From your comfortable observation cabin, watch this glorious coast unfold beneath you. Follow it swiftly—overtake it. Look down on famous bays and beaches, on historic harbors and Hispanic missions. Turn inland and admire the grandeur of snow-capped peaks, or seaward to Catalina and its sport. Alight—wherever your fancy dictates or your guests desire. You can—for you fly a Commuter.


   Your range is 400 miles at a hop. You can breakfast at the Fairmont, lunch and refuel at Santa Barbara, stop for tea at Coronado, then cross into Mexico and introduce your guests to quaint Ensenada and its luscious lobsters. With 300 horse-power at the throttle, altitude and distance vanish—into thin air.


   Get a Commuter and join the playbirds. Their sanctuary lies bathed in sunshine, between the Sierras and the Sea.






Sales Offices: 27 West 57th Street, New York








How Does 90-year-old copy stack up

Against 2021 Copy for Private Jets?

In short, damn well. Below are the hotshot techie lede paragraphs for five 21st century corporate jets:


Gulfstream G65OER

Extended Possibilities

The clean-sheet G650 family offers speed and range combinations that can save you significant time over the course of a year. The G65OER offers a maximum rage of 7,500 nm/13,890km at Mach 0.90, building upon the range of the G650, which covers 7,000 nm/12,964km at Mach 0.85 and 6000nm/11,112 km at Mach 0.90.


Dassault Falcon 8X


Of all the large-cabin jets on the market, the Falcon 8X alone provides a unique combination of efficiency, flexibility, long range and quiet, spacious comfort. All perfectly balanced to create a flying experience that exceeds the expectations of the most demanding customers. It incorporates Dassault’s considerable experience in fighter-derived flight control; ultra-efficient, long-range performance; sound reduction technology and adaptable interior spaces.



Bombardier Challenger 650

This Aircraft Means Business

The ultra-smooth, super-midsize Challenger 350 by Bombardier is purpose-built for efficient performance and exceptional comfort. Its spacious, stand-up cabin is punctuated with artisanal craftsmanship and touchscreen technology, while its unique sound dampening capabilities keep your in-flight experience amazingly quiet.


Cessna Citation Longitude


The CESSNA CITATION LONGITUDE aircraft was designed with your business and return on investment in mind: transatlantic range, advanced engineering and an unforgettable cabin experience all come together with the lowest direct operating costs of any super-midsize jet. Simply put: this aircraft delivers the reliability and efficiency you need to maximize the value of every mission. Take control of your most valuable asset and see how far you can go with the Citation Longitude super-midsize jet.



Founded in 2006, Honda Aircraft Company is the latest venture in Honda’s drive to enhance the freedom of mobility. We use the most advanced technologies to build safer, more efficient aircraft that defy industry norms and meet a variety of different missions. We are driven by a desire to enhance the benefits and increase accessibility of private aviation. Discover how our aircraft are tailored to meet your unique needs.



Takeaways to Consider



• Antique magazines provide a fascinating window into America’s past. This is not dry-as-dust history. Rather it’s superb writing and illustrations that capture the energy, exultation and angst of the epochs our parents and grandparents went through.


• My opinion from years of running book clubs and continuity series: Mitch Davis’s HISTORIC MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION SERVICE can never be a giant club with a six- or seven figure membership à la Book-or-the-Month, Literary Guild or TIME-LIFE Books.


• But as an exclusive boutique membership organization it is a serendipitous journey that can enrich your understanding of how we got to be the people we are today.


• You’ll find an ever expanding bonanza of ideas for products, services, copy approaches, headlines and offers.


• You’ll also be acquiring a one-of-kind private library of magnificent antique magazines chock-a-block full of ideas, stories and illustrations that will enhance your knowledge and understanding of history, science and business know-how.


• You’ll love being able to dazzle friends, family and professional colleagues with your extraordinary insights and grasp of the past.


• Oh, yeah… it’s also a helluva lot of fun!


• Go, Mitch!



(202) 333-5000




Word count: 1347

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At age 15, Denny Hatch—as a lowly apprentice—wrote his first news release for a Connecticut summer theater. To his astonishment it ran verbatim in The Middletown Press. He was instantly hooked on writing. After a two-year stint in the U.S. Army (1958-60), Denny had nine jobs in his first 12 years in business. He was fired from five of them and went on to save two businesses and start three others. One of his businesses—WHO’S MAILING WHAT! newsletter and archive service founded in 1984—revolutionized the science of how to measure the success of competitors’ direct mail. In the past 55 years he has been a book club director, magazine publisher, advertising copywriter/designer, editor, journalist and marketing consultant. He is the author of four published novels and seven books on business and marketing.


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