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Misleading Naming Of Marbles

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Guest browse4antiques

Here's a paragraph from a 1930 government document:


Gropper, M. J., & Sons (Inc.). (Complaint No.1722.) Charge: That respondents, engaged in

manufacture of glass marbles and sale thereof to jobbers, chain stores, and mail-order houses, uses the

word “Onyx” on labels and in advertising matter descriptive of same; thereby deceiving purchasing public

into erroneous belief that respondent’s product is composed of onyx.

Status: At issue.

... Roger

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Did Akro Agate ever make anything out of Agate? SOme of their slag-types were also referred to as Onyx, weren't they?

Akro, MFC and Peltier all called their slags onyx. This is my book report on the subject. ^_^

I never learned whether CAC called their slags anything other than Toy Marbles as seen in Post #8 here, One Killer Box Of Really Big C.a. Slags:-).

MFC had already been out of business 13 years in 1930 but even after Akro stopped making slags it still used the name Onyx for one of its cork lines.

Edited: The name "onyx" was so widely known for toy marbles that at least four companies used it over the course of about two decades before the FTC complaint. That seems like a long time to wait before complaining. And it hardly seems likely that after all those years of playing with and breaking glass marbles, the public would think those particular onyxes were rocks. That's really weird, Roger. Still cool to know. But really weird.

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  • 3 months later...


In case any one hadn't already guessed this from the more careful marbles labelling all around in 1933, here's the final outcome of that "pending" 1930 case against Gropper.

From the Annual Report of the Federal Trade Commission for the Fiscal Year Ended June 30 1931. (http://www.ftc.gov/os/annualreports/ar1931.pdf)

p. 56 indicates Gropper was found guilty of "Misbranding; false and misleading advertising." A cease and desist order was entered.

p. 157 has the details:


Gropper, M. J., & Sons (Inc.). (Docket 1722.) Order entered November 17, 1930, requiring

respondent, engaged in the sale of marbles, to cease and desist from the use of the word "onyx" to

designate glass marbles, without the use of other words clearly showing that such marbles are not made

of onyx.

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