Advertisements are all around us today and have been for a long time; advertising-free good old days just dont exist. This guide offers an overview of advertisements as historical sources and how historians use them, a brief history of advertising, questions to ask when interpreting ads as historical evidence, an annotated bibliography, and a guide to finding advertisements online. Author Daniel Pope has taught at the University of Oregon since 1975 and is currently Associate Professor and History Department Head. He teaches courses on American economic and business history and on the history of American radicalism. He is the author of The Making of Modern Advertising (1983) and editor of American Radicalism (2001); he has written many articles on the history of American advertising, marketing, and consumer culture, and on the history of nuclear power and anti-nuclear activism.
Published online June 2003. Cite as: Daniel Pope, "Making Sense of Advertisements," History Matters: The U.S. Survey Course on the Web, http://historymatters.gmu.edu/mse/Ads/, June 2003.