WWII reproduction of a Camel Cigarette carton For America’s Fighting Men, of museum quality, appropriate for historical display, reenacting and theatrical productions.
This Camel carton is one of the gift cigarette cartons that were sent to soldiers overseas from various cities, organizations, and religious groups. Camel specifically supplied the city of Philadelphia with specially marked Camel Cigarette carton packages to be sent overseas.
These free cartons from home caused quite a brouhaha with the War Relief Control Board, who had already arranged for the American Red Cross and Army PXs to carry cigarettes at a heavily discounted price. The War Relief Control Board wanted donations of money, not cases of cigarettes that clogged up the US Postal service. Despite the Control Board’s best efforts, individual organizations were able to purchase these gift cartons as long as they didn’t cross state lines or violate state laws. Since PA had no law against gifting cigarette packs, the City of Philadelphia partnered with Camels, much to the dismay of the Control Board.
To make matters worse, these cartons came with a little card that soldiers could use to send a personalized thank you. The postcards were quickly banned. Not only did they clog the postal service, but sensors discovered that thousands of soldiers were inadvertently disclosing their locations by using their complete military address including their unit!
For more about 1940s Camel cigarettes, see our blog post on the history of Camels.
This Camel cigarette carton is empty and contains no actual tobacco product.