Useful Victorian Life Hacks From 1880's Cigarette Packs

It will be found, in fact, that the ingenious are always fanciful, and the truly imaginative never otherwise than analytic.

~ Edgar Allan Poe

Gallaher's tobacco was founded in Ireland, 1857 by Tom Gallaher - just thirty years later, Tom owned the largest tobacco factory in the world. One of the reasons for his success (aside of the quality of his product of course) was the wittiness, beauty and cleverness of his packaging. An example? Well, take a look on the highly helpful life hacks which Tom placed in the back side of the packs...


How to clean new shoes


"A successful method is to rub the boots all over with half a lemon, allow them to dry, after which they will easily polish, although occasionally it may be found necessary to repeat the application of the lemon juice."


How to make a candle fit into a small holder


"If a candle is too thick to fit the candlestick, don't pare the end, but get a bowl of hot water and hold the end of the candle in it until the wax softens. If the candle is now pressed into the candlestick, it will sit firmly."


 How to separate two glass tumblers


"When two glass tumblers stick together, there is a danger of breakage in trying to separate them. The simplest and most effective method of releasing the glasses is to put cold water in the upper one and place the lower one in warm water. They will be found to separate at once."


How to increase your lung power and capacity

Stop smoking perhaps? No? Ok then "Stand erect on the balls of the feet with the head held well back. Then inhale deeply until the lungs are fully inflated, gradually exhale, allowing the chest to sink first, followed by the lungs. Repeat exercise several times both morning and evening."


How to prevent your glasses from steaming up


"The moisture which collects on eyeglasses causes a great deal of trouble, but if the glasses are daily rubbed with soap and well polished afterwards, a very thin, invisible film of soap remains, which has the effect of preventing the condensation of moisture on the glass."


How to build a fire without wood


"A good substitute [for kindling] is to use pieces of paper screwed into twists as the picture shows. Two or three pieces of newspaper are quite sufficient to start a judiciously built coal fire."


How to carry a heavy jug


"The correct way to hold the jug is shown in the right-hand sketch. This prevents the weight from pulling the jug down and so spilling what it contains, as is likely to happen if carried the other way."


How to crack boiled eggs

"To boil cracked eggs as satisfactorily as though they were undamaged, a little vinegar should be added to the water. If this is done, it will be found that none of the contents will boil out."


How to revive cut flowers

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"To revive choice blooms that have faded during transit, plunge the stems into hot water, and allow them to remain until the water has cooled. By that time the flowers will have revived. The ends of the stems should then be cut off and the blossoms placed in cold water in the usual way."


How to cut fresh bread into thin slices


"Plunge the bread knife into hot water and when thoroughly hot, wipe quickly. It will be found that the heated knife will cut soft, yielding new bread into the thinnest slices."


How to pick up broken glass


"To pick up broken glass quickly and cleanly, a soft damp cloth will be found to be most effective, for it takes up the small splinters. The best plan is to use an old rag that can be thrown away with the glass."


How to cool wine when you don't have ice


"If no ice is available for cooling wine, a good method is to wrap the bottle in flannel and place in a crock beneath a cold water tap. Allow the water to run over it, as shown in the picture, and in about ten minutes the wine will be thoroughly cool and ready for the table."


In April 2007 Japan Tobacco bought the Gallaher Group in the largest ever foreign acquisition of Japanese history. The hacks are gone but the packs remain well kept by collectionist and historians. Did you learn anything new?

The bold are helpless without cleverness.

~ Euripides