Posts Tagged ‘paper bag’

A Paper Bag

November 4, 2013

Museum folks must be odd. What else can explain the excitement we feel about a paper bag? But actually, the bag concerned is special. It was recently offered for sale on an internet auction site. A supporter of the museum bought it and the seller very kindly waived postage and packing charges. It didn’t cost very much – but as a museum we do not purchase items. We rely on donations.

Here is the bag which has, almost inevitably, been folded so a crease mark shows.


A J Sheppard of Easterton paper bag

For those who like sizes, the bag is about 24 cm square – slightly too wide for an A4 scanner so the edges have been missed here.

We can see straight away that the bag came from the bakery in Easterton which belonged to J Sheppard – but let’s look first at the cartoon in the middle – which is delightful.

Cartoon on the Easterton bakery bag

Cartoon on the Easterton bakery bag

The scene, on a bus, is from a past age as far as rural buses are concerned. The conductor/ticket seller on a bus has long vanished. All our buses are driver only vehicles.

The dialogue is, of course, simply charming.

Now let’s turn to the baker – J Sheppard. His daughter still lives locally and she describes a family move from Market Lavington to Easterton when she was aged one in 1927. The family home was at Jubilee Cottages, Easterton and bread was made and sold from there.

James Sheppard was clearly quite a high class baker and in her oral history, which we have at the museum, his daughter recalls him winning the competition for lunch cake in 1932. We suspect the bag dates from soon after that event which was organised by Hovis and the cake – some kind of fruit loaf, had to be made with Hovis flour. Apparently James won a gold watch which a descendant still has.

We need to do a little further research for we do not know when James shut up shop but we suspect it would have been by 1960.

A ragged paper bag

February 4, 2011

There are all sorts in a museum – things which we feel are worthy of keeping even if they are in poor condition. Today we look at a paper bag which has certainly seen much better days. But it has Market Lavington interest so we keep it.

A very ragged flour bag at Market Lavington Museum

The bag, thought to date from the early 20th century, was a container for flour – hence, no doubt, the rather charming harvest scene in the middle.

Harvest time, as shown on the flour bag

This best quality self raising flour was sold by A M Walton at Lavington Supply Stores.

The A M Walton logo

Mr Walton’s premises were on the corner of White Street, High Street and Church Street. Some of his ‘empire’ was where the hairdresser’s is now and in the buildings beyond it on White Street. But his bakery business was on the other side of White Street so this probably came from there.

The business flourished in the early years of the twentieth century but eventually the income from the shop was not enough for it to pay its way and Market Lavington’s very own department store was closed down.

Fragile items like this bag are not normally on display but are available for inspection. If you visit the museum, just ask the steward on duty and they’ll do their best to find the item in the storeroom.