Speaking of members of the Cyclone Club and favorites of mine, today we have Basil Wilson Duke. I have a whole page here at the website full of information about the man and you should check that out. But what I want to do here is post these:
These are print ads for Old Crow Whiskey that I found online probably ten years ago and you can see Duke in both of them. I'm not sure when the ads were published but, if I had to guess, I'd say mid to late 1960s. And doing a quick search, it looks like they come from the early 1960s, so I wasn't off by much.
And why was Old Crow using these images to sell whiskey in the early 1960s? First, I'd note that Old Crow was made in Kentucky so there's a connection with Duke and the war. Second, the early 1860s marked the centennial of the war and you saw increased interest in the period at that time. So, the more you think about, the ads really aren't as odd as they appear to be at first glance. But I'd also add that there was probably something else going on with these images and that had something to do with Southern reaction to the Civil Rights movement. Old Crow was invoking images of the Lost Cause to appeal to Southerns unhappy or uncomfortable with what was going on in the country.
These ads are a product of their time and place and you wouldn't see anything like this today. Can you imagine any company today producing advertising that featured Nathan Bedford Forrest?