The Texas Fire Extinguisher Co. and Hitler — 1942

by Paula Bosse

tx-fire-extinguisher-coTexas Fire Extinguisher Co., across from Fair Park… (click for larger image)

by Paula Bosse

For a place that sells fire extinguishers and tractor equipment, this is a wonderfully comforting image. Hardly even looks like Dallas. The Texas Fire Extinguisher Company — operated for several decades by the Hancock family — was located at the corner of Parry and Second Avenue, across from Fair Park. While checking to see the exact address of this business (which, by the way, was 929 Second Ave.), I came across a 1942 article mentioning it and Hitler.

According to a Dallas Morning News blurblet, the Hancock company owner had placed a want-ad for a painter and paperhanger and received an odd response on a postcard:

“Gentlemen: I wish to apply for the job as a paperhanger. Am hunting bears at present, but am about out of ammunition. Anyway, I am a better paperhanger than I am a bear hunter. –Adolph Hitler, Berlin, Germany. (P.S. Please rush answer as this job is playing out and may have to move soon.)”

Humor doesn’t always translate successfully across the generations. But, hey, that was weird.


Sources & Notes

Postcard (cropped) from the Boston Public Library Tichnor Brothers Postcard Collection on Flickr, here.

Quote from Dallas Morning News article “Reply to Want Ad Indicates Hitler Wants a New Job” (DMN, Nov. 6, 1942).

Click postcard for larger image.


Copyright © 2014 Paula Bosse. All Rights Reserved.