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MC 693; T-398; DVD-80

Rindlaub, Jean Wade, 1904-1991. Papers of Jean Wade Rindlaub, ca.1848-1991 (inclusive), 1930-1981 (bulk): A Finding Aid

Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University

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Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University

© President and Fellows of Harvard College


Processing of this collection was made possible by a gift from Louise Walker McCannel.

Descriptive Summary

Call No.: MC 693; T-398; DVD-80
Repository: Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
Creator: Jean Wade Rindlaub, 1904-1991
Title: Papers of Jean Wade Rindlaub, ca.1848-1991 (inclusive), 1930-1981 (bulk)
Date(s): 1848-1991
Date(s): 1930-1981
Quantity: 24.16 linear feet (35 +1/2 file boxes, 4 folio boxes, 3 folio+ boxes, 1 oversize box, 1 card file box) plus 1 folio folder, 3 folio+ folders, 2 supersize folders, 16 photograph folders, 2 audiotapes, 1 DVD)
Language of materials: Most materials in English; some materials in Japanese.
Abstract: Speeches, articles, market research, recipes, writings, proofs, and published advertisements created by Jean Wade Rindlaub, pioneering woman copywriter and advertising executive who specialized in selling products to women consumers.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

Accession numbers: 2006-M177, 2006-M193, 2011-M59; folders #18.7, 32FB.29, and 34F+B.22 were added in April 2014. Accession number 2014-M102 was added in June 2015.
The papers of Jean Wade Rindlaub were given by Karen Price, wife of Anne Rindlaub Dow, in October and November 2006, March 2011, and June 2014.

Processing Information:

Processed: October 2012
By: Marilyn Morgan with assistance from Suzanna Calev.
Updated and additional material added: June 2015
By: Mark Vassar.

Access Restrictions:

Access. Unrestricted. An appointment is necessary to use any audiovisual material.

Conditions Governing Use:

Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by Jean Wade Rindlaub is held by the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright in writings, including speeches, constituting Rindlaub's work for Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborn is held by Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborn. Copyright in advertisements is held by commissioning clients (e.g., General Mills holds copyright for Betty Crocker products). Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.
Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.

Preferred Citation:

Jean Wade Rindlaub Papers, ca.1848-1991; item description, dates. MC 693, folder #. Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.

SEPARATION RECORD

Donor: Karen Price
Accession numbers: 2006-M177, 2006-M193, 2011-M59
Processed by: Marilyn Morgan
The following items have been removed from the collection and transferred to the Schlesinger Library Books and Printed Materials Division:
The following items have been removed from the collection:

BIOGRAPHY

Award-winning advertiser Jean Wade Rindlaub was born Helen Jean Wade in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, on February 9, 1904. Known to her family as Jean, she was the eldest of two daughters born to Robert Mifflin Wade (1874-1944) and Lola Heller Hess Wade (1878-1941). Rindlaub and her sister, Mary Emily Wade (1911-1966), were educated at home by her father who, along with his brothers, operated the Pennsylvania Business and Shorthand College in Lancaster. Rindlaub learned shorthand at an early age and by age eleven could type 50 words per minute. As a teenager she helped her father with classes and worked as a secretary to the advertising manager of the Armstrong Cork Company. Before long, she began working as a copywriter for the company. In 1930, she moved to New York City to marry Willard W. Rindlaub (1903-1983), a technical staff worker at Bell Telephone Company. Two weeks after her wedding, she began working in the trade and industrial department of the advertising agency, Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborn (BBDO). During her career, Rindlaub remained devoted to her husband and the couple had two children, John Wade Rindlaub (1934-) and Anne Rindlaub Dow (1938-2003).
Shortly after she started at BBDO, Rindlaub began working as a copywriter in the consumer department. Her catchy ads for Bond Bread, Duff's Gingerbread, Enna Jettick shoes, and Marvelous Makeup, quickly distinguished her as a skilled advertiser. Savvy, affable, and outgoing, Rindlaub conducted extensive market research that delved into the female psyche, identifying women's needs and products which would improve efficiency in their lives. She pioneered two research groups to assess market needs. The Junior Council, which consisted of 250 female employees of BBDO aged 18 to 35 years old, utilized their personal experience to assess current products and explore the needs of young adult women, brides-to-be, and newlyweds. The Homemaker's Council, which was comprised of 125 women aged 36 and older, were tasked with evaluating products and exploring the needs of housewives and young mothers. Both councils also helped find suitable names and packaging for products. During her career at BBDO, Rindlaub worked on more than fifty major accounts in foods, cosmetics, home furnishings, household equipment, and other products targeted to women consumers. She spearheaded successful advertising campaigns for some of the most influential and prominent manufacturing companies in America, with clients including General Mills, United Fruit Company, Campbell's soup, Carter's clothing, and Oneida silverware.
The first campaign that won critical acclaim and widespread popularity was called "Back Home for Keeps," which promoted the product Community Silver for Oneida in 1944. Featuring young couples in love, the advertisements reportedly became pin-up posters for soldiers at war and a symbol of hope for young Americans on the home front. According to her son, Rindlaub received stacks of fan mail from young people praising the inspirational ads. After the war, General Mills became one of her largest clients. As the voice of Betty Crocker, she conducted a great deal of market research, collecting cookbooks, culinary pamphlets, and many recipes. She founded BBDO's first test kitchen to develop and test new recipes and products for General Mills and United Fruit. In her research, she interviewed thousands of women in order to gauge consumer concerns and needs; she then advised clients how to target women as consumers. Not only did she develop highly lucrative campaigns, sometimes her research led to benefits for consumers. For instance, she advised chain grocery store owners that young mothers could be induced to shop at the conglomerate stores instead of local town shops, if the large grocery stores installed public restrooms (a suggestion that arose from young mothers with small children); the stores followed her advice.
Rindlaub's career at BBDO is marked by successive honors and awards. In 1944, she became the first woman elected vice president of BBDO, and also served as a director of Advertising Women of New York. In 1951, the Advertising Federation of America named her "Advertising Woman of the Year," and the following year she was appointed honorary vice president of Gamma Alpha Chi, the highest honor bestowed by that national professional advertising fraternity. Rindlaub also holds the distinction of becoming the first woman elected to BBDO's board of directors (1954). Known as a gifted speech writer, Rindlaub captivated diverse audiences, including advertising agencies and courses, home economics programs, clients, and women in various trades. Well-respected for her ability to write engaging, motivational speeches, she wrote the farewell tributes for BBDO executives and legendary advertising gurus Bruce Barton and Ben Duffy.
Her success in creating market research councils made her an authority on advertising directed towards women. One of the most influential women in advertising, her work is represented in "100 Best Copywriters," "100 Best Advertisements," and the "Best of Reader's Digest." In 1962, she became the first recipient of the Printer's Ink Award (silver medal) awarded by the Advertising Federation of America. The following year, she officially retired from BBDO. Within a few weeks, however, she began working as a consultant, lecturing to various audiences, and conducting market research and writing copy for General Mills, Lever, and Kraft.
During retirement she became increasingly active in civic community work, locally and nationally, especially within the local Teaneck (New Jersey) Community Chest, Christ Church, and the Girl Scouts. For her numerous creative contributions, the Girl Scout Council honored her as a women of distinction and named her Citizen of the Year in 1981. Her many accomplishments were recognized again in 1989 when the Advertising Hall of Fame inducted her as an honoree. Throughout her career, she peppered speeches with anecdotes about her children and grandchildren: John Rindlaub, Jr., Christopher Dow, Curtis Rindlaub, Heather Dow, and David Rindlaub, upon whom she doted. After a long and happy marriage, her husband Willard died in 1983. After suffering a stroke in 1991, Rindlaub died from complications. She was 87.

ARRANGEMENT

The collection is arranged in eight series:

SCOPE AND CONTENT

The papers of Jean Wade Rindlaub include biographical material; correspondence; financial records; notes; transcripts of speeches; articles; recipes; publishing proofs and advertisements; market research; a DVD; and audiotapes. Much of the material pertains to her work, primarily conducted during her long career at the Manhattan advertising agency, Batten, Barton, Durstine, & Osborn (BBDO). Known as one of the most successful and enduring advertising firms in Manhattan, the agency formed in 1928 when advertising pioneers Bruce Barton, Roy Durstine, and Alex Osborn merged their agency, Barton, Durstine & Osborn (BDO), with that of William H. Johns, who presided over the Batten Company (founded by George Batten in 1891). The papers were received loose and in folders, speeches were found in bound folders, and ads of various sizes were stored in large flat boxes. Materials found in labeled folders remain together, and retain Rindlaub's labeling; advertisements were separated and stored according to size. Included are Rindlaub's advertisements for clients such as General Mills, North Star blankets, Hormel foods, United Fruit Company, Bond Bread, Enna Jettick shoes, etc. They contain extensive market research documenting market trends and consumer habits--primarily in the food industry, fashion, cosmetics, and home furnishings, from the early 1940s through 1970--as well as myriad recipes created and tested in test kitchens. The collection contains transcripts of Rindlaub's speeches that recount personal tidbits of her experience as she climbed the ranks from secretary to copywriter to advertising executive. Often, they include advice to young women hoping to advance in the profession and suggest ways to make advertisers more successful. Her speeches and market research provide a window into the thoughts and experiences of a professional woman in the (then) predominantly male profession of advertising. The collection also includes drafts of children's stories Rindlaub wrote in the 1930s, as well as consultant work she did post-retirement, for organizations dedicated to women's issues. Additional material was added to the collection in July 2013 and housed in #18.7, 32FB.29, and 34F+B.22, and June 2015 and housed in #36.1-42.8. Folders are listed in intellectual, not numerical, order. Motion picture reels (35 mm) documenting Rindlaub's induction into the Advertising Hall of Fame will be added to the collection after they have been sent out for conservation.
Series I, PERSONAL AND BIOGRAPHICAL, 1899-1991 (#1.1-6.14, 18.7, 29FB.1-29FB.2, 31OB.1, 32FB.29, 34F+B.22, 36.1-36.4, PD.1-PD.3, DVD-80.1, T-398.1), contains biographical and autobiographical statements, awards, clippings about Rindlaub and her work, correspondence, an oral history, and ledger books. It is divided into two subseries.
Subseries A, Personal and biographical, 1899-1991 (#1.1-3.4, 18.7, 32FB.29, 34F+B.22, 36.1-36.4, PD.1-PD.3, DVD-80.1, T-398.1), contains awards, clippings, correspondence, ephemera, notes, an oral history, and a DVD. In 1951, the Advertising Federation of America named Rindlaub "Advertising Woman of the Year," highlighting her ability to create effective and memorable advertising, crediting her astute use of facts and high standards, and recognizing her work assisting young people in the field. Some of the clippings and correspondence discuss that award. Of particular interest in this subseries is a notebook maintained by Rindlaub in which she records her caloric intake and weight on an almost daily basis. Rindlaub also records various diets which she has followed, addresses, guest lists, to-do lists, and lists of trips taken, restaurants, and antiques owned by the family in this notebook. This subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries B, Finances 1922-1981 (#3.5-6.14), contains income and expense records in which Rindlaub recorded her income and itemized expenses. The earliest ledger books (specifically 1922 and 1923) provide a very detailed account of the cost of various items categorized as home goods, clothes (including dresses, lace, shoes, beads, skirts, aprons, slips, etc.), necessities (including Coca Cola, orangeade, ice cream, yeast, car fare), gifts (church, charity), and luxuries (valentine's card, hairdresser, books). Later ledgers (some of which may have been maintained by her husband, Willard) capture fewer details, focusing primarily on salaries, stocks, bonds, dividends, other investments, and utility bills. Most record books included loose notes (including tallies of expenses, lists, some correspondence, and some certificates of investments, etc. ) that were removed and refoldered by the archivist. This subseries is arranged chronologically.
Series II. ADVERTISEMENTS: BETTY CROCKER AND GENERAL MILLS, 1945-1969, n.d. (#6.15-6.20, 29FB.3-29FB.19, 30F+B.1-30F+B.14, OB.31.2-OB.31.13, SD.1), contains proofs and published advertisements for various Betty Crocker products that Rindlaub created during her employment at BBDO, and, upon her retirement, as a paid consultant of General Mills. When BBDO acquired General Mills as a client, Betty Crocker lagged far behind Pillsbury and Duncan Hines in cake mix sales. When Rindlaub began overseeing the account (late-1940s through 1962), she conducted intensive consumer research, tweaked products to appeal to women's needs, and collected new recipes to include on advertisements. She developed new advertisements emphasizing Betty Crocker's pledge: "I guarantee you a perfect cake, every time you bake, cake after cake, after cake" and her ads featured big, colorful pictures of mouth-watering cakes and sometimes included happy children. Under Rindlaub's visionary campaign, Betty Crocker took the lead in the cake mix market, introducing various successful new cake mixes and frostings.
Roughly half of advertisement proofs are marked with dates locations in which they appeared. Other ads can be dated by the Betty Crocker spoon, and by Betty's appearance (her collar, necklace, hair, serious demeanor or smile), as well as the changing tagline. While this series is heavily dominated by desserts, especially cakes, frostings, and pie crusts, it also contains ads for pancakes, as well as other General Mills products sold alongside Betty Crocker desserts, such as Sunkist lemonade, Black Diamond walnuts, coffee, ice cream, etc. This series is arranged chronologically, and thereunder by size. Note: some folders contain very fragile newsprint proofs and must be handled with extreme care.
Series III, ADVERTISEMENTS FOR OTHER CLIENTS, 1930-1989 (#6.2-7.4, 32FB.1-32FB.28, SD.1-SD.2, 31OB.14-31OB.23, 33F+B.1-34F+B.21), contains proofs of advertisements as well as clippings of published ads that Rindlaub created, predominantly during her employment at BBDO. Rindlaub worked on a number of very popular campaigns including "Back Home for Keeps" for the Oneida silver company, Chiquita Banana for United Fruit Company, Marvelous Makeup by Richard Hudnut, Carter's clothing, Eatmor Cranberries, and North Star Blankets. It is arranged alphabetically and thereunder by size; folders containing glossy ads are followed by folders containing newsprint ads. Note: some folders contain very fragile newsprint proofs and must be handled with extreme care.
Series IV, MARKET RESEARCH AND PRODUCT PROMOTION, 1925-1981 (#7.5-11.6, 26.1-28.5, 36-5-36.6, PD.4), contains research, recipes, correspondence, survey results, reports, published pamphlets, and other documents collected by Rindlaub. It is arranged in two subseries.
Subseries A, Market research and promotion, ca.1930-1979 (#7.5-11.6, PD.4), contains research, recipes, correspondence, memos, survey results, reports, project proposals, and drafts regarding target audiences and marketing strategies collected by Rindlaub. It includes folders labeled by Rindlaub (e.g., "Food World of Future"), pertaining to broad ideas and approaches to advertising, as well as results from focus groups, such as the Junior Council, that Rindlaub instituted at BBDO. Some folders predict future trends and speculate about items that women and men will want, in the areas of food, diet, apparel, cosmetics, and grooming products. These include frozen food, canned food, smaller mixes, plastic squeeze bottles, pre-washed lettuce, pre-packaged dinners, protein content on labels, and ways to prevent obesity in children. It includes drafts of Rindlaub writing as Betty Crocker as well as copy for pamphlets for other clients for whom Rindlaub consulted after retiring from BBDO, such as Campbell's. Folder titles in quotation marks were created by Rindlaub and her original order was retained; considerable overlap but little duplication exists between folders. This subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries B, Pamphlets, 1925-1981 (#26.1-28.5, 36-5-36.6), contains pamphlets, primarily related to food and nutrition, created by Rindlaub; products manufactured by clients Rindlaub represented are listed in the folder titles. Other pamphlets represent competitor brands, nutritional information, or recipes that she collected for market research. This subseries also contains a number of pamphlets written to educate expecting mothers and new mothers, and advice produced by the Better Babies Bureau of the Women's Home Companion, whose goal was to teach women about hygiene, infant nutrition and care, and positive parenting techniques to produce healthy American children. Pamphlets are grouped broadly, according to topic, and will be cataloged individually in HOLLIS.
Series V, WRITINGS, PRESENTATIONS, AND SPEECHES, ca.1925-1981 (#11.7-21.7, T-398.2), contains essays, articles, speeches, and other writings done by Rindlaub. It is divided into three subseries.
Subseries A, Writings, ca.1925-1979 (#11.7-15.9), contains copies of articles Rindlaub published, ideas for articles and speeches, and drafts, some of which are in shorthand. It includes notes, research, survey results, and ideas to be used in BBDO's in-house publication Wedge, as well as correspondence about Wedge ideas, drafts of Rindlaub's contributions to Wedge, and copies of the publication itself. Clippings from the New York Times and other prominent sources re: women and voting, taxpayers, and other topics, were discarded. This subseries is arranged alphabetically, and thereunder chronologically.
Subseries B, In-house presentations, 1945-1961 (#16.1-16.9), contains copies of presentations Rindlaub made to BBDO staff. Most are untitled and address topics such as obtaining new clients, formulating and selling ideas (especially to women), and implementing creative marketing strategies (e.g., presentations on Betty Crocker products suggest using large, colorful photos of mouth-watering cakes to induce hunger and to associate cakes with pleasant emotion). In sharing her strategies, Rindlaub often wove in personal anecdotes. This subseries is arranged chronologically.
Subseries C, Speeches, 1937-1981 (#16.10-21.7, T-398.2), contains drafts of speeches or lectures written and delivered by Rindlaub to a wide variety of audiences, including advertising associations, home economics departments of colleges, girls' clubs, conferences, clients, and consumer groups. The majority of talks define advertising in simple, straightforward terms ("a bridge between people who make things and people who need things") and praise its virtues. Advertising, Rindlaub assured audiences, is helpful to homemakers, teaching them how to save time, instructing them how to prepare pleasing meals, and illustrating styles to emulate. She titled the majority of speeches and, in some instances, she reused titles for speeches that had completely different content (e.g., "Stop the world, I want to get on"). Rindlaub believed that to be successful in advertising, one needed to think creatively from the customer's perspective, appeal to emotions, and know the consumer's needs. She often opened speeches with anecdotes about her family to illustrate the effectiveness of using emotion and making an ad relatable. She encouraged advertisers to continually ask "What's in it for me?" (WIIFM) and used the acronym WIIFM often in speeches. After she retired from BBDO, Rindlaub continued to deliver speeches, both to large advertising associations and community groups such as Community Chest (Teaneck, New Jersey), and the Girl Scouts of America. This subseries is arranged chronologically.
Series VI. SUBJECT FILES, 1943-1985 (#21.8-25.4, 33F+B.1), contains publicity materials, notes, programs, pamphlets, and some correspondence pertaining to topics and causes that interested Rindlaub, as well as organizations in which she actively participated and served in an advisory capacity. Believing very strongly in civic responsibility, she became actively involved with community organizations, serving on the Board for the Safety Council of Greater New York, the Bergen County Council for the Aging, and the Girl Scouts of America, to name a few. She also served as the vice president for the National Council of Women, chairperson of Womanpower in Action, and president of Women of Christ Church. Some folders contain pamphlets that Rindlaub collected for research; however, notes indicate that she also authored some of the pamphlets, such as the anti-narcotics ones, for which no author was formally attributed. This subseries is arranged alphabetically, and thereunder chronologically.
Series VII. OVERSIZED, 1930-1969 (#29FB.1-29FB.20, 32FB.1-32FB.29, 30F+B.1-30F+B.14, 33F+B.1-33F+B.17, 31OB.1-31OB.23, 34F+B.1-34F+B.22, 35CB, SD.1-SD.2), is the shelflist for oversized material found throughout this collection and listed in previous series.
Series VIII. FAMILY AND PHOTOGRAPHS, ca.1848-1978 (#36.7-42.8, 43FB-44FB, FD.2, F+D.1-F+D.3, PD.5-PD.16), contains letters, school assignments, contracts, pamphlets, photographs, etc. The bulk of this material belonged to Anne Rindlaub and consists of letters received; school assignments; pamphlets and fliers from Radcliffe College and T-Ledge Camp for girls on Orr's Island, Maine; etc. The bulk of the letters were received by Rindlaub while a student at Teaneck High School in New Jersey, the Westover School in Massachusetts, or Radcliffe College. Many of the earlier letters are from her mother, Jean Wade Rindlaub (who often signed her letters "Me"), her father, Willard W. Rindlaub, and her brother, John Rindlaub. They often inform her of extended family occurrences and news of friends from Teaneck High School, but her mother often discusses her travel for work and speeches given at advertising conferences and meetings of the National Safety Council. Jean Wade Rindlaub often forwarded letters that she had received, her speeches, and clippings in letters to her daughter. Other correspondents include friends from Teaneck High School (while Rindlaub was attending Westover School and Radcliffe College) who shared news of Teaneck friends; plays, dances, and other events that occurred at the school; and news of their acceptance at various colleges and universities. Other Teaneck High School friends write about their time at other private schools and colleges including the Northfield School (now Northfield Mount Hermon), Wellesley College, Tufts University, and Yale University, or their time in the military. Additional correspondents include friends Rindlaub made while in France with Experiment in International Living and others she met while on an American Friends Service Committee trip to Martinique who share news of their lives. Most school assignments were completed while Rindlaub was a student at Teaneck High School. A scrapbook entitled "Through the Looking Glass" is of particular interest as it depicts thinking about women's health and beauty at the time. Other material in this series is from other family members. Material of Willard W. Rindlaub consists of a military discharge and an identification card and notebook documenting some of his work at Bell Telephone; material of Robert M. Wade consists of pamphlets, fliers, and other ephemera from the Pennsylvania Business and Shorthand College; and material of Phoebe Weaver consists of a recipe book and a poetry scrapbook. The series also include photographs of the Rindlaub family and the Hess, Wade, and Guss families (ancestors of the Rindlaubs); a Montessori kindergarten; T-Ledge Camp for girls on Orr's Island, Maine; and of the wedding of Jean Wade Rindlaub and Willard W. Rindlaub. The series is arranged alphabetically with family papers appearing first, followed by photographs. Folder titles were created by the processor.
Most of the photographs in this collection are or will be cataloged in VIA, Harvard University's Visual Information Access database. Others, referred to as "uncataloged" photographs, are not of sufficient research interest to warrant cataloging and are simply treated as part of the documents they accompany; they are marked on the back with an asterisk in square brackets [*].

Container List

Additional Index Terms

Advertisements
Advertising agencies--United States
Advertising and mothers
Advertising and women
Advertising and youth
Advertising--Baby foods
Advertising--Baked products
Advertising--Cosmetics
Advertising--Health products
Advertising--Social aspects--United States
Audiotapes
Bananas in popular culture
Businesswomen--United States
Cake
Consumers--Psychology
Cooking, American
DVD-Video discs
Greeting cards
High school girls--New Jersey
Menus
Mothers and daughters
Nutrition--Research--United States
Photographs
Recipes
Reducing diets
Speeches
Women in advertising--United States
Women in the advertising industry--United States
Advertising, Public Relations, and Marketing Research (Firm)
Advertising Women of New York
American Cranberry Exchange
Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborne, inc.
Campbell Soup Company
Chiquita Brands International
Crocker, Betty
Dow, Anne Rindlaub, 1938-2003
General Mills, inc.
National Council of Women of the United States
North Star Blankets, Inc.
Oneida, ltd.
Pennsylvania Business and Shorthand College
United Fruit Company

sch01371