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  • Christmas 2018 countdown has already begun. Will you be ready???
  • Why do we love Christmas? It's all about the traditions. In this chaotic world we can miss the "good old days." Christmas reminds us of that time.
  • The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine. A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on that day.
  • Santa Claus's sleigh is led by eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder (variously spelled Donder and Donner), and Blixem (variously spelled Blixen and Blitzen), with Rudolph being a 20th-century inclusion.
  • Outdoor Christmas lights on homes evolved from decorating the traditional Christmas tree and house with candles during the Christmas season. Lighting the tree with small candles dates back to the 17th century and originated in Germany before spreading to Eastern Europe.
  • That big, jolly man in the red suit with a white beard didn’t always look that way. Prior to 1931, Santa was depicted as everything from a tall gaunt man to a spooky-looking elf. He has donned a bishop's robe and a Norse huntsman's animal skin. When Civil War cartoonist Thomas Nast drew Santa Claus for Harper's Weekly in 1862, Santa was a small elflike figure who supported the Union. Nast continued to draw Santa for 30 years, changing the color of his coat from tan to the red he’s known for today.

Empire Fanatic


Everything posted by Empire Fanatic

  1. General Foam Norfolk factory

    They should have closed this one years ago when they made the Empire purchase.
  2. General Foam Auction Tarboro

    Here's a link to the Lots that have molds. Click on each to see photos. It took me about two hours to save all of them. Mostly descriptions, but in some you can see the mold. Recognize some of these oldies??? https://www.bidspotter.com/en-us/auction-catalogues/bscci/catalogue-id-bscci10279?searchTerm=aluminum+blow+molds&whereToSearch=%2Fen-us%2Fauction-catalogues%2Fbscci%2Fcatalogue-id-bscci10279
  3. General Foam Auction Tarboro

    Mel, here's photos from ebay of the Empire marked (with the original undated logo) carolers, which was in the Noma catalog in the mid 1960's. So Empire was making it in the mid 1960's. The mold in the photo has the original Empire logo as well. Not sure how Lidco fits into this. About the Bayshore pumpkin mold, I know Empire made their Haunted House, Scarecrow and Top Hat Pumpkin(have never seen this Empire version outside the catalog, so they might not have ever actually produced it) as they are listed in the 1989 catalog (as new). I really don't believe they ever made the Bayshore Super Deluxe Pumpkin. That's why I think it was cool that they still had the mold. It also tells me they probably still had all the Bayshore Halloween Molds.
  4. General Foam - Former Empire Factory

    That's cool!
  5. General Foam - Former Empire Factory

    It's amazing the horrible condition the former Empire factory is in. Here's a overhead view. Click the square on the lower left hand side to see the view and use the "-" sign on the right to size it in order to see the entire building. It's the building on the right side of Daniel Street, and is very long. Click View Larger Map, and click on it, to take it to street view to go up and down Daniel Street to see the entire factory. What a mess!
  6. General Foam Auction Tarboro

    That's a good question. There's lots of info and many pics on the Blow Mold Nation page on Facebook. There were members there yesterday and at the auction today. I'm sure there will be multiple posts and more photos tonight. It did answer one question I always had. The really old Empire molds still existed! I couldn't believe when I saw the 14" carolers above. Do you know if Empire even made them into the 1970's? Also, did you notice Mel on the top shelf on the left in picture 4 is the mold for Bayshore's Super Deluxe Pumpkin No. 7883 and 7829? Totally cool! Do you know if Empire ever actually made this item?
  7. Yesteryear....

    Mel, do mean the official company name? I have some old toy catalogs. The 1976 Fall catalog says Empire Of Carolina - A division of Carolina Enterprises, Inc. The company went public in 1979. According to a letter from then President Mason Benson in the front of the 1981 toy catalog: "The year 1980 was Empire's first full year as public company." ........."However, we are proud to report, with your support, Empire of Carolina, Inc. returned a profit to it's shareholders in it's first year of operation. But, the bottom of the next page says MCMLXXXI Carolina Enterprises, Inc. Then the back page lists the executives under the heading "Empire of Carolina, Inc. The 1995 Annual Report lists the main company as being Empire of Carolina, Inc. A June 1996 Prospectus for a stock offering states: "Empire of Carolina, Inc. was incorporated in Delaware in 1979".
  8. General Foam - Former Empire Factory

    Click "Parcel" on the upper left. Then enter 501 Daniel in the "Address Search". Click on General Foam Plastics. Then "Prop Card" in the top center.
  9. General Foam - Former Empire Factory

    Check out the county web-site for the property. If you click on "Prop Card", and then print, it'll open a summary which lists all of the buildings, their use and year built (center top).
  10. Yesteryear....

    Did you happen to check out their ads from 1963, 1964, and 1965 to see who the MFG was? Walgreen's had blow molds in 1966.......https://www.newspapers.com/image/104277999/?terms=outdoor%2Billuminated
  11. Yesteryear....

    Mel, here's an ad from McAlpin's Department Store here in Cincinnati. It appeared in the Cincinnati Enquirer December 3, 1967. I printed it out about 20 years ago at a local library. I've also posted a shot of the entire ad preview page from the archive site Newspapers.com to verify the date. Looks like most of the non dated pieces we are familiar with are listed in the ad. Below is the link to the dated search I did as well as a link to a more general search using the phrase from the ad: "outdoor illumined". If you scroll through that list, you can see there are more McAlpin's ads for Christmas blow molds as early as 1963 and 1964. I don't have a subscription to the site yet so I can only see the small preview photos and can't determine who made them. There is a 7 day free trial. I plan to try that when I have more time to explore the papers. https://www.newspapers.com/search/#lnd=1&ymd=1967-12-03&query=outdoor+illuminated&t=844&oquery=outdoor+illuminated++december+3%2C+1967 https://www.newspapers.com/search/#lnd=1&query=outdoor+illuminated&offset=5&t=844 Here's a 1962 JCP ad with blowmolds... https://www.newspapers.com/image/101656472/?terms=outdoor%2Billuminated
  12. Yesteryear....

    Mel, do you have the rest of this article? It mentions photos of larger Santas "pictured below". We may have learned two things. 1) If Judith Novelty was a part of Mallory Randall Corporation, and it bought Carolina Enterprises in December, 1968, that means the Pixies marked Judith Novelty 1966 were not Empire products. 2) The oldest Empire products, such as the Nativity above, were not dated. That dating began in 1968. Judith Novelty's influence as they dated their Pixie molds? Are you aware what year Empire was founded? Also, where was the factory located prior to moving to Tarboro in 1960?
  13. Empire 1974 Christmas Catalog

    Does anyone know why molds Empire stamped 1973 weren't even in the 1974 catalog? I'm specifically referring to the 22" Jolly Snowman and Santa, as well as the 40" NOEL Candle. There could be others. Even the large Santa Train stamped 1972 wasn't in it. Maybe because of the Energy Crisis at the time?
  14. Empire 1974 Christmas Catalog

    You're right. Maybe there was some other reason. I know there were no blow molds in Sears catalog in 1976 (not sure about 1975). Also, I remember they disappeared from local stores around that time and my Mom telling me no stores were going to sell them and she gave me a reason for it, but I can't remember. I do remember being happy when they popped up again. 1976 or 1977? I was 10 at that time. A discount store near my house had the Dapol Santa and Snowman (36"?). My Grandpa bought me the Santa as I already had the 48" Poloron Snowman.
  15. GFP Closing

    Two questions. What was still being manufactured in Norfolk? Swimming pools and toys? Also, there appear to have been a lot of blow molds left that were recently sold. I wonder why Menards couldn't get any? All they had was the Nativity set this past year. Seems shipping all those from Tarboro to Norfolk would have been expensive.
  16. Did Everybody Quit PC?

    By using the word "lurk", it sounds nefarious. Which couldn't be further from the truth in my case. I remember a guy named Chris that was shady. I had never heard of Blow Mold Nation FB page until reading this post. I just checked it out. Didn't Carrie Sansing used to be a big contributor here?
  17. Did Everybody Quit PC?

    I'm still here. I just come and read the blow mold page. This is the first time I've logged in probably years.
  18. GFP Closing

    Greed has nothing to do with it. It's absurd to even pose that question. A business isn't a charity. It has to be profitable if it wants to stay in business. That isn't greed. It's a fact of life. People just don't buy blow molds anymore. Their time has passed. They'll be closing down the Empire plant in Tarboro. That sad!
  19. Belco Lites Corp. Blowmolds

    Ever heard of Belco Lites Corp? This is a new one for me. Their Ghost mold was dated 1979. One was on Ebay: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-1979-Belco-Lites-Plastic-Lighted-Ghost-Pumpkin-Halloween-Blowmold-Works-/161124702976?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2583c7db00 Click the main photo for additional photos.
  20. Gf Santa Train/american Sale

    After so many years of wanting a Santa Train, I took the plunge and purchased one online from American Sale on Saturday. Something arrived on Tuesday, but it was a Santa Sleigh and Reindeer. I called them immediately. Today, only two days later, my Santa Train arrived! And as I was hoping, it's the white version, not the new black version. Shipping was costly but worth it for something I have wanted for years and years. And I received outstanding service from American Sale. I HIGHLY recommend them!
  21. American Sales

    Since I was a kid back in the 70's, I have wanted the Santa Empire Train. Only once, about 20 years ago, did I ever see it in a local store. To this day I regret not buying one then. So, I bit the bullet and bought it (now made by General Foam) off of the American Sale site on Saturday. I got an email today saying it has shipped. It should be last years stock as it's not the new black color in their photo. We'll see. But I have been watching it since last Christmas and the quantity available has steadily gone down, never up, so I assume they didn't order that style this year. This will shock people but with shipping it was just over $300.00. But to finally get something I have wanted since I was a kid, it's worth it to me. With the way the economy is, GF could fold in an instant. I will let everyone know how satisfied I am once I receive it. But so far, so good.
  22. Target Giant Pumpkin Pail

    I was at Target tonight and they had an interesting General Foam marked item that is not in their catalog. It's a pumpkin pail w/handle but it's about 5X the size of the normal GF pail. It was pretty cool and was priced at $6.00. To me, it's perfect to put the candy in that you're handing out on Halloween. It's marked General Foam and Made In The USA, but there are also some other markings I have never seen before including a "factory code". I need to go back and buy one. The store I was at only had 2 and they were sitting on the base of the shelf below the costumes as were all the traditional GF pails they have. They have several aisles of costumes and pails if anyone goes to check this item out.
  23. Finally...menards Has The Gf Santa Train!

    WOW What a disappointment. Their gone from the site. And my link above doesn't work. Hopefully this link works. But the Train as well as the large Nativity is gone. http://www.menards.com/main/search.html?search=blow+mold&ipp=100
  24. Finally...menards Has The Gf Santa Train!

    Menards has the Santa Train in the new color scheme via Special Order this year. The price is right @ $79.99. http://www.menards.com/main/see-more/christmas/lawn-decor/santa-train-with-car/p-2086377-c-12293.htm
  25. Menard's not only has the Santa Train this year but also the large Nativity, via special order. http://www.menards.com/main/search.html?search=blow+molds&ipp=100