Little Lord Fauntleroy Merchandise and Advertising

Figure 1.--This advertising card appeared in a box of Quaker Oats. I somwhow think that baseball players may have been more popular among boys at the time. I'm not sure if this was one of a series of literary characters. Note the red stockings, they were mentioned in the book.

Little Lord Fauntleroy was the most easily rcognizeable boy literary character and was stwidely known a generation earlier. In fsct, he is still a widely recognizeable character in 2000. The immage of Fauntleroy is not the very positiove image associated with him in the 1880s and 1890s, but he is still widely recognized. He was the first child literary child to be widely used in merchandizing and advertisement. While warlkier child charcyers like Oliver Twist and Topm Sawyer were not extensively merchandized, Little Lord Fautleroy was. I'm not sure why this was. It speaks to how popular Fauntleroy was with mothers as well as the development of the new advertising industry.


A wide variety of merchandisce was made with images of Little Lord Fauntlery. Some were authorized and some were not. Toys and dolls as well as cut out figures were some of the most popular items. Paper dolls were particularly popular. Some products for adults were also made with Fauntleroy images. Production of inexpensive "scraps", coloured cards, children's illustrated books etc. was made possible by the advances in color lithography in the late 19th century. Much of the printing was done in Germany. Much of the early work was done in Germany where companies were especilly advanced in color printing. German chemical compaies were renowned for their work in color dyes. French companies played an especially important role in the greeting card industry.


Fautleroy images were also used in advertisements. The new advertising industry was just coming into existence with the spread of mass media like newpapers and magazines. I'm not sure as just which procucts were endorsed by Mrs. Burnett and Little Lord Fauntleroy. Clearly Quaker Oats is one such product and there are many more. Quaker Oats put Fauntleroy on a series of trading cards, assuring boys that Faunrleroys's food was Quaker Oats. I wonder how effective this was or how popular the cards were. Presumably a number of Fauntleroys would be needed in a trade to earn one Ty Cobb! Trading cards were a very popular inovation of the late 19th centurty. Advances in lithography made attractive cards possible. Many companies issued them.

Christopher Wagner

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Created: March 17, 2000
Last updated: December 26, 2000