Moline Memories - MHS 66 Friends

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Melo Cream Penny Postcard

Dean Jacquin posed for a Melo Cream penny postcard around 1938.
His mother Charlotte was dad's sister.

I was looking for pictures of Moline when I found this one on a penny postcard page. "That's Cousin Dean!" He graduated from Moline High in 1955. Aunt Charlotte worked at Melo Cream for many years.

The family legend is that dad and his brother bought Melo Cream when the store failed as a franchise, keeping the name. This is apparently the original franchise.

They began without electric mixers, if they were even available, so dad mixed all the batches by hand, giving him Popeye forearms he never lost.

He believed in advertising, so we had Melo Cream hats long before that upstart Krispy Kreme gave them away.

Every year someone was featured on the calendar. One of my melancholy duties was giving away those calendars. People just had to pull out the latest calendar picture from the envelope and say, "Aww." The calendars featured the Jackson cousins as they grew into parents and included grandchildren as they were born.

The phone number on the calendar got longer as Moline grew, starting at three numbers and growing to seven.

To make Melo Cream seem larger, we passed the phone to the intended recipient thus, "Aunt Charlotte, phone for you, line 8."

The phone always had a light dusting of flour and powdered sugar from its proximity to the table where bread doughnuts and danish were readied.

WQUA ads
The staff at WQUA ate free at the counter and gave Melo Cream free ads from time to time. No one was better than Jack Barlow at live ads. People drove to the shop in the middle of night, still in their PJs, robes, and slippers, to buy doughnuts after Jack talked about them.

I remember Jack at WQUA, but I did not know he had a recording career. This MySpace site tells about it.

"Jack Barlow was farming in Muscatine, Iowa, when he was hired as a deejay for the local station, KWPC. That led to a move to Moline, Iowa where he had his own show on WQUA. From there, he moved to WIRE in Indianapolis. That's where he met Darrell Speck, who had moved his family north to Beech Grove, Indiana in 1964 to work in radio and write songs. They co-wrote I Love Country Music with Barlow's friend, singer/songwriter Charlie Stewart."

Now I have to do a separate post on Jack Barlow the singer.