Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login
Tom Tucker's Ghost by yankeedog Tom Tucker's Ghost by yankeedog
Tom Tucker Mint Ginger Ale was the creation of Sidney Harris, a Pittsburgh inventor and entrepreneur. It was said that Mr. Harris had soda pop running through his veins! Almost his entire life was devoted to inventing and bottling soda. After dropping out of school in the 8th grade Sidney Harris embarked on a journey that would last his entire life. He started his soda pop dream by selling flavored drinks and ice from the back of a horse drawn wagon on the streets of Downtown Pittsburgh, he parlayed this modest venture into a small empire of very tasty and popular drinks. Along with his famous Tom Tucker mint ginger ale, he also invented Champayno, a nonalcoholic beverage that tasted like champagne!
Sidney Harris was known to travel sales route with a life size mannequin Tom Tucker dressed in top hat and tuxedo! The kids loved Tom Tucker and Mr. Harris.
In 1978, Sidney Harris retired, selling his Tom Tucker Bottling Company or so it was thought. It seems Mr. Harris just couldn't stop and soon became involved with Natrona Bottling, were he continued to bottle Champayno and a new drink he called Plantation Mint Julep. It was said that Plantation Mint Julep had medicinal qualities and was great for the relief of heartburn.
Mr. Harris was one of those rare individuals who seems happen once in a lifetime. He never measured success by possessions, but by the friends that he made and the difference he made in their lives. Sidney Harris passed away on June 3, 2003, he was 100 years old!

This Tom Tucker advertisement is painted on the side of a small building along Pittsburgh Street in Springdale, Pennsylvania. I've driven by this advertisement thousands and thousands of times and never noticed it till the other morning. It must have been the Ghost of Tom Tucker?
Add a Comment:
 
:iconbadluckshadow13:
badluckshadow13 Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2011
I've just always wondered why the bottle says it's "Southern style mint ginger ale" I've never even heard of any other brands that make it, much less other styles of it.
Reply
:iconyankeedog:
yankeedog Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2011  Professional General Artist
I think Cott makes a "Southern Style Mint Ginger Ale", but I've never seen anything other than Tom Tucker.
-YD
Reply
:iconlyle462:
Lyle462 Featured By Owner Nov 16, 2007
Now why did "Another Brick in the Wall" just hit me when I first glanced at this? :) (The band is really fantastic that's what I think. Oh by the way...which one's Pink!LOL)
Reply
:iconyankeedog:
yankeedog Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2007  Professional General Artist
Thanks Lyle! That's an interesting song, I like the talking at the end. Here's Pink: [link] :-) I'm not sure about Floyd.
-YD
Reply
:iconlyle462:
Lyle462 Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2007
LOL! :)
Reply
:icontyhopho:
tyhopho Featured By Owner Apr 2, 2005  Hobbyist Photographer
old faded advertisments are true treasures when you discover them as they are windows into the past. well spotted and a good shot, although some sharpening could bring out some detail in the shot.
Reply
:iconyankeedog:
yankeedog Featured By Owner Apr 2, 2005  Professional General Artist
Thanks Brian! I thought it was a good find too. I was afraid to mess with it too much, I didn't want to lose any more of the image, but I'll try sharpening and see if that helps. I've been shooting a lot of these ghost ads lately. I'm planning on posting some others.
-YD
Reply
:iconyankeedog:
yankeedog Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2005  Professional General Artist
Thanks! I was just looking for some info about the brand name and found Sidney Harris' obituary. I had know idea he was a local guy. Can you imagine all that he saw in 100 years 1903 -2003? The birth of flight, the automobile, electricity, Jazz, Swing, WWI, WWII, the Korean War, Jet planes, Vietnam, men in space, Rock 'N Roll, man on the moon, the computer... Pretty amazing! Now I'm trying to find an old Tom Tucker bottle to add to my collection of junk in my studio. :-) [link] [link] [link]
-YD
Reply
:iconandy-san:
Andy-san Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2005  Professional Digital Artist
very interesting story
Reply
:iconjojomercury:
jojomercury Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2005
I love old ad images and also wall posters that are weathered.The story added so much more to the image Don giving it a life beyond the faded brick.Well done my friend.
Peace&Respect Jojo
Reply
:iconyankeedog:
yankeedog Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2005  Professional General Artist
Thanks Jojo! I had to do a lot of research to find out about Tom Tucker. I love "Ghost Advertising". Researching it is archeology in a way, but only of the not too distant past.
-YD
Reply
:iconvegvisir:
Vegvisir Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2005   General Artist
Great photo and history! I love old fashioned adverizing!
Reply
:iconyankeedog:
yankeedog Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2005  Professional General Artist
Thanks! Being in advertising, I find these ghost ads very interesting. I especially like the fact that the ads were hand painted.
I remember drinking Tom Tucker Ginger Ale when I was a kid, my grandmother always had some at her house.
-YD
Reply
:iconvegvisir:
Vegvisir Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2005   General Artist
10-4 ;)
Reply
:iconcamfella:
camfella Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2005
A great piece of history. Are there any plans to repaint the ad? Be a shame to have it vanish forever.
One thing struck me while reading it, Is this the "American Dream"?
Reply
:iconyankeedog:
yankeedog Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2005  Professional General Artist
Thanks Cam! Not that I know of, but there have been several projects in Pittsburgh where they restored painted advertisements in buildings. It looks to me that there are at least 3 other advertisements under it. At least one other Tom Tucker ad and a jewelry store ad. It would be a tough restoration project without have some reference as to what it originally looked like. I see Tom Tucker bottles from time to time at flea markets, but this is the only outdoor ad I've ever seen.

About The American Dream, I don't know, but Pittsburgh is as good a place as any to have a dream and have it come true. The American Dream to me is to become successful, respected and admired by my friends and family. I'm still working on it. :-)
-YD
Reply
:iconcamfella:
camfella Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2005
Ill have to upload a shot that I took last winter in a small town called Almonte. Its of an ad that was re-created for chewing tobacco. It floored me to see an advert for a tobacco product, but it is a part of making the town seem untouched.
At least there is an American dream. Canadians seem to scoff at the concept and quietly try to think of any possible Canadian Dream. The only way to find out would be to hit up the govt for a grant and drive across the country stopping at every rink and Tim Hortons along the way asking "What is the Canadian Dream?"
Hmmmm sounds like a plan........
Probably end up with the same conclusion that you have of :"becoming successful, respected and admired by my friends and family".
There was a quote I think it came from John LaCarre - " A hero is someone who simply tries to act like a decent human being". Or some thing along those lines.
Reply
:iconyankeedog:
yankeedog Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2005  Professional General Artist
Let me know when you upload the Almonte Ad. There's a nice restored ad on my way home from work, but it's hard to shoot it.
Do it! All it takes is a plan :-) I have a plan, but I guess it's not a very good one.
That's my America Dream becoming successful, respected and admired by my friends and family, there is a can do attitude here in Pittsburgh, I guess because of Carnegie, Frick, Mellon... John Kane, Andy Warhol, Barton Morris... then there are the sports team here, the Pirates, the Steelers and Mario and the Penguins.
I love that quote!
-YD
Reply
:iconcamfella:
camfella Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2005
[link]
Almonte Add. Alot of the smaller towns up the valley have painted murals on buildings, makes for an interesting drive.
Here's to the American Dream.
Reply
:iconyankeedog:
yankeedog Featured By Owner Mar 23, 2005  Professional General Artist
To dreams!
-YD
Reply
:icontoadsmoothy:
toadsmoothy Featured By Owner Mar 19, 2005
what a great find! :clap:
Reply
:iconyankeedog:
yankeedog Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2005  Professional General Artist
Thanks Tracy! It was one of those things that just apeared to me one day, it's been there all along, I just never noticed it before. I guess that's why they call them "Ghosts Ads".
-YD
Reply
Add a Comment:
 
×



Details

Submitted on
March 19, 2005
Image Size
378 KB
Resolution
686×777
Thumb

Stats

Views
4,053
Favourites
4 (who?)
Comments
22

Camera Data

Make
FUJIFILM
Model
FinePix 3800
Shutter Speed
1/119 second
Aperture
F/2.8
Focal Length
6 mm
ISO Speed
100
Date Taken
Mar 18, 2005, 6:52:55 AM
×