Representatives' Sample Cases

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Earliest Known California Perfume Company Depot Agent Sample Case

Ms. Lillie Ashcroft of Logan, Utah
Note: In her left hand, Ms. Ashcroft  holds a wooden Representative's Display Case

A concise history entitled, "Mr. McConnell and the California Perfume Co." was compiled in 1935. Nestled inside the six-page chronicle is this particularly revealing passage:

"During the following years in managing the business [the Union Publishing House] he further evolved his ideas on how to successfully sell directly to the consumer...Mr. McConnell's ambition was to manufacture a line of goods that would be consumed and used up. He felt that the selling techniques of the book canvassers could be applied to this line, with equal success. He believed that the proper and most advantageous way of selling goods was to be able to submit the goods themselves to the people. It seemed to him that the perfume business afforded the very best opportunity to build up a permanent and well-established trade."

The key was to "submit the good to the people!

The earliest known Instruction Manual for Depot Agents, produced in 1899, offered three different Outfits:

The First Outfit: The wooden sample case filled with unspecified goods that, "is as complete as any single outfit," and, "shows up the whole line reasonably well."

The Second Outfit: Flavoring Extracts alone; this outfit costs $1.25. "The ten glass-stopper bottles hold one ounce each, and are put up only for these outfits. Never order the one-ounce bottle of Flavoring Extracts for customers. Those are put up for the outfits only. The combination box of coloring should also be carried in connection with No. 2 outfit."

The Third Outfit: "These goods can be ordered with previous order of goods, at wholesale prices, and put into your First Outfit case, and we would suggest for this Third Outfit the following articles: one 4-ounce Bottle, Glass Stopper, of Toilet Water; one Bottle Eau de Quinine Hair Tonic; one Bottle Bandoline; one half-ounce Bottle of French Perfume (any odor); one Bottle of Tooth Wash; one Cream Shaving Soap; one Talcum Powder; one Cold Cream; one Cake of Carpet Renovator; one Bottle of Violet Almond Meal; one Cake of Dr. Zabriskie's Soap; one Box Savona Soap (highly perfumed); one Massage Cream; and one Olive Oil.

Depot Agent Sample Case
~Mid- to Late-1890's

Depot Agent Sample Case
~Early 1900's

Unknown Representative
Note: In her left hand, this Representative holds a thatched Representative's Display Case

Representative's Sample Case


Representative's Sample Case
~Probably 1916 to Early-1920's
Note: Reference to the Color Plate Catalog

Note: "California Perfume Co." etched into the handle's base

Representative's Sample Case
~Probably Early- to Mid-1920's

Representative's Display Portfolio
Note: This advertisement is from the March 1929 edition of the CPC Outlook

Representative's Sample Case
~Early- to Mid-1930's

Representative's Sample Case

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