New to the cafe?
Long time listener, first time caller?
This page will tell you about my cafe,
why I do it, and where I
get some of my information.
I am fascinated by the past. Not so much the politics of the past, but the lifestyles of the past. When I see an old-time photo, I look at the people in it and wonder "what was their reality?" After they are finished smiling for the camera, what are they going to do? ...eat? ...wear? What kind of camera did the photographer use? What does the house across the street look like? When mom says "let's go shopping," where did they go? You know...the everyday stuff.
Our attitudes were different. Our music was different. Let's face it...things just LOOKED different. My Nostalgia Cafe is an attempt to recreate the decades of the past and make you feel like you're actually there.
I'll admit, some of the stuff I recall is pretty obscure. That's because, when we look back, we usually remember the same old stuff that everybody else remembers....the cliches. Remembering the obscure things along with the cliches makes nostalgia more fun! Anyone can post a photo of John Travolta in his "disco" pose and say they have a 70s page, but I attempt to go beyond that.
My site is completely non-profit, run just as a hobby. I have no affiliation with any product, person or artist I mention. I have acquired the images here and there around the web, and I use them only to present everyday life and the pop culture of the past as completely as I can. I mean no disrespect to any person or group that I include, and I claim ownership only of the graphics and wordage I have created myself.
errors & omissions
The information I include is correct to the best of my knowledge, but shouldn't be relied on as absolute fact. When I find that I have given wrong information, I do make corrections. No listing of the movies, TV shows, actors and bands of any decade can ever be 100% complete, and my site is no exception. If I have left out a person, group or movie, it isn't because I don't think it worthy of inclusion, it simply may not have crossed my mind yet, or I may be waiting to find a really good website about it to link to.
There are some topics, like sports and cars, that I am not as familiar with. I'm afraid my site is a little light when it comes to these things...I do apologize! You may find that my site is a bit skimpy when it comes to major events in the news...again, it's not that I don't find them important. On the contrary, they are very important, and I wish to give them the proper treatment they deserve. So I may be a little slow in including this information.
greed-free & profanity-free
My site is completely greed-free...I will not attempt to sell you anything, and I have no affiliation with any retailer. The only ads you will see are the ones placed on my page by the website host. Also, my pages contain no profanity, and are suitable for most ages. I do refer to things like drug use and racism, but only because these things occurred, and need to be included.
I know many people are interested in acquiring videos of their favorite TV shows from the old days. I DO NOT collect tapes, trade tapes, or know where you can get tapes. So please don't ask me if I know where you can get a video of the "Hullabaloo" episode featuring Petula Clark....I don't know!
Long-time visitors may have guessed by now that I'm "working backwards" in time. When I think the decade I'm currently adding is sufficiently "full," and when I feel I'm ready to tackle the previous ten years, I'll start a series of pages on the previous decade. Even when I start a new set of pages, I never stop working on the old ones, so check back often to see if I've added anything new!
I always enjoy looking at retro and nostalgia websites, and my site is an attempt to bring together the links I've found and place them into the eras in which they belong. Outside links provide more information about a topic than I can squeeze onto my pages, and really make my pages "come to life." I do try to keep my links updated, but I have lots of them and sometimes a "dead link" will slip in there. Please be patient!
These are some of the books I've used to gather my information. I heartily recommend them!
1) Extraordinary Origins Of Everyday Things -Charles Panati
New York: Harper & Row, 1987
2) Hake's Guide To Advertising Collectibles: 100 Years Of Advertising From 100 Famous Companies -Theodore L. Hake
Radnor, PA: Wallace-Homestead Book Co., 1992
3) MTV: The Making Of A Revolution -Tom McGrath
Philadelphia: Running Press, 1996
4) Rock On Almanac: The First Four Decades Of Rock 'n' Roll, A Chronology -Norm N. Nite
New York: Harper & Row, 1989
5) Too Good To Be Forgotten: Changing America in the '60s and '70s -David Obst
John Wiley & Sons, 1998
6) The Circus Fire: A True Story -Stewart O'Nan
7) Going, Going, Gone: Vanishing Americana -Susan Jonas & Marilyn Nissenon
San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 1994, 1998
8) The Writer's Guide To Everyday Life, From Prohibition Through World War II - Marc McCutcheon
Writers Digest Books, 1995
9) The Good Old Days--They Were Terrible! - Otto Bettmann
Random House, 1974
10) The Uncertainty Of Everyday Life, 1915-1945 - Harvey Green
University Of Arkansas Press, 1999
11) The Plantation Mistress - Catherine Clinton
12) Crabgrass Frontier: The Suburbanization Of The United States - Kenneth T. Jackson
Oxford University Press, 1987
Other sources include old photos, cable channels like the Discovery Channel and History Channel, WTTW's Chicago History series by Jeffrey Baer, Reminisce magazine (longtime subscriber!), antique stores, eBay, old catalogs and microfilms of old newspapers.