Sunday, April 24, 2016

Wallet Card at a billboard for a decades-gone cigarette brand

In 1980 Brown & Williamson introduced what it touted to be a revolutionary low-tar cigarette, the Barclay, and had a major ad campaign that included a huge painted billboard on Eighth Avenue and 50th Street. The Barclay cigarette caused immediate controversy as it turned out the low-tar claims were because the design of the cigarette beat the FDA's tar test, rather than actually being low-tar. Sales quickly plummeted and by the end of the 1980s the cigarette had disappeared from the market. In 1985, the building on the corner was built, blocking the sign and so ensuring that no one else would bother to put a new one up, so the Barclay sign may remain an out-of-date curiosity for years to come.

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