Sunday, September 19, 2010

I'm Guessing This Might Be Unique Today

This is the top of a small cardboard box, most likely from 1946. All photos clickable to see in greater detail.

This is the bottom of the box, stamped The Ivory Palace, New Delhi, (India).

Inside the box is this black velvet case, with embroidered gold and silver threads featuring a Peacock, the national bird of India.

Unsnapping the case reveals a tag which reads "Genuine Gold and Silver Thread, Ivory Mart, New Delhi India," so the threads are apparently really metallic. Inside the case is ...

... an unopened pack of Lucky Strikes, still completely wrapped in cellophane! I'm not sure how many unopened packs of almost 65 year old cigarettes could possibly be around, still in the decorative case they've been in the entire time. I don't know why they were never opened, but it's a very cool collectible today, you have to admit! 

I have quite a bit of jewelry—gold and ivory pieces, all in boxes marked The Ivory Palace and The Ivory Mart that my Dad must have bought and put away. I know he was in India and the Middle East right after the war was over, and he wouldn't meet my mother for another couple of years. He had been married and divorced twice by the mid 1940s, so I think he might not have had a chance to give the jewelry to anyone until he met my mother in the late 1940s. 

My dad was a romantic though, so it would be totally like him to buy jewelry and put it away until he "needed" it for someone. He did that 'til the day he died. If he saw something that he thought he could give to someone, anyone, he'd buy it and then just wait for the right opportunity. He LOVED giving things to people, not expecting anything in return, but just to be nice. He had a traumatic childhood, never knowing a kindness from anyone, and I think it was a way for him to overcome those experiences.

A Little Romantic Tale
When my dad married my mom, he bought her two bottles of Chanel No.5 perfume, the real stuff not cologne, and told her to open one right away and save the other for their 50th anniversary. My entire life, that unopened bottle of perfume was on her vanity—everyone was under penalty of death if we touched it, lol. My dad died just after their 36th anniversary, and my mother only had a few days to live at what would have been their 49th anniversary, so I opened it up for her. It was still perfectly preserved, with a bit of wax under the glass top keeping it from evaporating or changing aroma. She died the day after that anniversary. She was cremated but I asked the funeral director to put the bottle of Chanel in her container so I could bury it with her. That way she would, indeed, have it with her on their Golden Anniversary.


  1. You are the best son ever. What a wonderful story. My father also would give my mother Chanel No. 5. I also remember her having a bottle of Nuit de Noel, that came in an oval shaped case with a tassel on the bottom. The tassel and the case were green, not solid but kind of flecked with bits of gold as I recall. Funny how your posts always triggers my memory of so long ago.

  2. and Annie, your comments always give me an idea for another post, lol. my grandmother loved perfumes too, and I still have some of hers, although they were opened in the 50s and 60s so they don't really smell the same now.