Coca-Cola Tray Menu Girl 1953
This Coca-Cola soda tray is known as the “Menu Girl” version produced in 1953. The tray shows a young woman at a counter holding a Coca-Cola bottle with a menu card in front of her. This tray version was introduced in 1953 and was distributed for a few years after that. Usually, the Coca-Cola tray series had a red inner rim but this tray depicts several sports themes on the rim. It reads “Thirst knows no season” and “Have a Coke”. The words “Trade Mark Reg. US Pat Off” appear below the words Coca-Cola in the trademark, typical for the time period of 1941-1960’s. The version of the Menu Girl soda tray is very common but still very desirable as an original. The Menu Girl tray also came in a spanish version.
Coca-Cola is the leader of all the old-time soda advertisers. Rare memorabilia from popular brands such as Coca-Cola can generate the most value but overall the worth of the soda relics depend on condition, the brand and how unique it is.
Coca-Cola originated in 1886 when a pharmacist Dr. John S. Pemberton, from Atlanta, Georgia developed a unique beverage formula. It was originally considered a medicinal tonic that he called “French Wine of Coca”. He did not add alcohol like other elixirs at that time. Instead, he created a dark brown syrupy drink. He took his drink to Jacob’s Pharmacy which was a successful business for that time. He persuaded the owner to offer this new tasting soft drink to customers. The beverage became very popular and was a hit at soda fountains. Dr. Pemberton’s accountant, Frank M. Robinson, is credited with naming the beverage “Coca‑Cola”, thinking that the two C’s would look well in advertising. Robinson also designed the script trademark when he used his own handwriting with a form of penmanship known at that time as Spencerian script. He thought it had a dramatic style and the trademark has stayed almost the same over the years with a few minor variations. The name was not a registered trademark until 1893.
The first print advertising for Coca-Cola was included in the Atlanta Journal. The ad described the beverage as “Delicious, Refreshing, Invigorating”. The very earliest forms of advertising Coca-Cola were drink tickets, horse-drawn wagons with advertising signs and newspaper ads.