Congo Cloth Necktie

As one expects, there’s a distinct air of racism about a lot of advertising from the middle 1900s. The use of Chinese Silk allowed for the use of very obvious stereotypes in advertising. One egregious example of period racism is Congo Cloth. I suspect that they chose the name simply to be able to use a stylised “African” face in their adverts and labels. Sure, the fabric was designed for warmer climates, but Congo seems a bit arbitrary. Really awful. Below the pic of the tie is an advertisement for Congo Cloth from a 1938 edition of Esquire.

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6 comments
  1. Mario said:

    What’s so speical about this kind of fabric? Just another linen/cotton blend (I can’t read the ad…)?
    I’ve seen a white congo cloth jacket turning up on Ebay time and time again for at least a year.

  2. Marc Chevalier said:

    Mario, It’s allegedly special because it’s supposed to be like Palm Beach Cloth, but with lighter and with less wrinkling. Then again, all of Palm Beach Cloth’s competitors made the same claim.

  3. Mario, it’s made of “Dupont Spun Rayon” so some kind of early miracle fabric. Quite different feel to Palm Beach cloth, tbh. The main interest is the awful graphics …

  4. Mario said:

    How does the fabric hold up in hot weather when compared to stuff made from PB fabric?

  5. I’ve no idea. We don’t get hot weather on this side of the channel

  6. Mario said:

    Touché!

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