Radio Commercial for Sunbrite Cleanser, 1937
Note: the records of the Federal Trade Commission include thousands of transcripts for radio commercials broadcast in the 1930s. These transcripts were sent to the FTC's Special Board of Investigation, which was set up in 1929 to investigate complaints about false or misleading advertising. The Special Board reviewed the transcripts and followed up on those they felt were misleading.
The following is a transcript of an advertisement for a household cleaner named Sunbrite. It was preserved in the FTC records, but there is no evidence it aroused any concern on the Special Board's part. The ad appeared as the lead-in to a radio drama about Clara Barton, a Northern reformer who organized nursing care for Civil War soldiers and later founded the American Red Cross. The transcript includes only the first lines of the drama itself.
Source: Record Group 122, Federal Trade Commission, Records of the Special Board of Investigation, Box 39, "Cleanser: Sunbrite." National Archives, College Park, MD.
Client: Sunbrite CBS
Program: Junior Nurse Corps, January 27, 1937
Cast: Clara Barton, Johnny Perkins, General Drucker
SOUND: BABBLE OF VOICES
SOUND: KNOCK KNOCK
DOROTHY: The Sunbrite Junior Nurse Corps come to attention: Welcome to another meeting of the Sunbrite Junior Nurse Corps! We'll open our meeting, as usual, with the official salute and creed. Stand for Attention! Salute and repeat with me!
"As Junior Nurses, we pledge ourselves to fight dirt and disease - to keep ourselves physically and mentally clean - to practice and teach household hygiene - to help those in need and distress - to be brave in time of danger - and loyal to those we love."
SOUND: VOICES UP: FADE OUT
DOROTHY: Junior Nurses, I have a special message for all members of our Corps - but I think I'll let Dr. Watson tell it to you, because he explains things so well. Will you, Dr. Watson?
ANNOUNCER: Why of course, Dorothy. Junior Nurses, you know of course, that all societies, clubs and lodges have a great deal of official business which should be kept secret from people who don't belong. Now, take the Sunbrite Junior Nurse Corps, for instance. First, there's your copy of the Nurse's creed, instructions about giving the official salute, information in the manual, etc. which should be secret except to actual members of the Junior Nurse Corps - or their mothers. For this reason, an official notebook cover was designed, to be used only by Junior Nurses. And your manual and catalog and everything have been made to fit in this cover. It's a very important looking cover - with the insignia of the Junior Nurse Corps embossed on the front. Two metal rings inside can be pulled apart, and your manual, Junior Nurse, News, equipment catalog, and any official messages from Dorothy Hart, can be inserted. Then you can close the book, and no one knows what is inside, unless you give permission to open it, of course, And everything can be kept together, very handy - for meetings. Every member of the Sunbrite Junior Nurse Corps should have this notebook cover, in order to preserve and protect the official papers of the Corps. Your equipment catalog shows a picture of it, and tells how Sunbrite will help you get it. Look at the catalog today. Now, if you haven't joined the Junior Nurse Corps, yet, here's how you can become a member. Send just one complete Sunbrite label, with your name and address, to Dorothy Hart, Sunbrite, Chicago. At once your name goes on the membership roll, and you get all the things to which new members are entitled - your membership certificate, the Junior Nurse Manual, Nurse's creed, instructions about giving the official salute - and at the same time you get the big free equipment catalog which tells about the notebook cover, as well as the official uniform, first aid kit, identification bracelet, ring, and other things only Junior Nurses can get. Hurry up and join if you aren't a member. Remember the address - Dorothy Hart, Sunbrite, Chicago.
DOROTHY: And now, Aunt Jane, what's today's story on Clara Barton?
JANE: Well, Dorothy, you remember that on Monday, we hear how the courtmartial had gathered to hear the sly, crafty Mr. Morton make his wicked attempt to accuse Miss Barton of aiding a spy - by convicting a man who had been arrested as the spy. But, when the spy did appear everyone roared with laughter - for the man who had been arrested and brought up for trial turned out be none other than our own brave friend, Johnny Perkins.
DOROTHY: You mean they arrested Johnny Perkins, Aunt Jane.
JANE: That's right, Dorothy. Of course, as soon as Major Drucker - who was in charge of the courtmartial saw his old friend, he...
Remainder of program was not transcribed.