Rubifoam for the Teeth, E. W. Hoyt & Co., Lowell, MA

According to Cliff & Linda Hoyt “Rubifoam for the Teeth was sold by E. W. Hoyt & Co. (The name is pronounced like Ruby Foam due to the brilliant red color of the product.) It was introduced in 1887, the same year that E.W. Hoyt died at the age of 49.  In addition to trade cards the company also published a number of pamphlets for Rubifoam. The pamphlets typically were providing information on taking care of your teeth.”  The E. W. Hoyt & Co. was also well known for producing Hoyt’s German Cologne, which the firm widely advertised with Rubifoam in many decorative and often colorful trade cards, pamphlets and magazines ads.

Rubifoam FOR THE TEETH PUT UP BY E. W. HOYT & Co LOWELL, MASS

Bottle embossed “Rubifoam FOR THE TEETH PUT UP BY E. W. HOYT & Co LOWELL, MASS”


Archaeologist John Parker writes, “Hoyt’s German Cologne was introduced in 1870 by E.W. Hoyt. Hoyt began working at E. A. Staniels’ apothecary shop in Lowell, MA in 1851, at the age 13. When Staniels died in 1861, Hoyt took over the business.   He developed the cologne at the shop but by 1877 the cologne business had grown so large that he sold the old shop to concentrate on the cologne business. His partner Freeman B. Shedd was the marketing wizard behind the product. Hoyt died in 1887, the same year Shedd brought out Hoyt’s “Rubifoam” tooth wash.”

Marshall Clark, at the Kansas Historical Foundation, notes in his description of Fort Hays archaeological finds from the 1870s that “‘Brushing the teeth, though in vogue in foreign armies and approved by hygienists as a preventative of agues and diseases, was rare,’ states George W. Adams in his fascinating book, titled Doctors in Blue. The archaeological collection contains a number of toothbrush handle remnants. They are made from ivory, bone, or celluloid, and one is inscribed ‘Ivory Finish.’ Several include remains of the bristles. Bottles in this collection represent at least three different brands of tooth cleaners. Back then, these preparations were called “tooth washes.” One brand, ‘Rubifoam for the Teeth,’ was made by E. W. Hoyt and Company of Lowell, Massachusetts. Rubifoam cost twenty five cents a bottle and was described as being “deliciously flavored.” The company even put out a small publication promoting the prevention of tooth decay through the use of its product. It was much later, in 1901, that the idea that bacteria caused decay was accepted.”

From History of Middlesex County, Massachusetts: With Biographical Sketches of Many of Its Pioneers and Prominent Men, Volume 2, Duane Hamilton Hurd, J. W. Lewis & Company, 1890

From History of Middlesex County, Massachusetts: With Biographical Sketches of Many of Its Pioneers and Prominent Men, Volume 2, by Duane Hamilton Hurd, J. W. Lewis & Company, 1890

From Effective Magazine Advertising: 508 Essays about 111 Advertisements, Francis Bellamy, M. Kennerley, 1909

From Effective Magazine Advertising: 508 Essays about 111 Advertisements, Francis Bellamy, M. Kennerley, 1909

Advertisement for Hoyt's German Cologne and Rubifoam for the Teeth, both manufactured by E.W. Hoyt & Co., Lowell, Mass., illustrated with girl and Ladies Calendar for 1889

Advertisement for Hoyt’s German Cologne and Rubifoam for the Teeth, both manufactured by E.W. Hoyt & Co., Lowell, Mass., illustrated with girl and Ladies Calendar for 1889

Rubifoam ad, date unknown

Rubifoam ad, date unknown

FRONT: This apothecary card for Rubifoam for the Teeth displays an illustration of three young ladies posing for a picture. “Bush & Co., 56 Front St., Worcester, Mass” stamped on the back., 1889

FRONT: This apothecary card for Rubifoam for the Teeth displays an illustration of three young ladies posing for a picture. “Bush & Co., 56 Front St., Worcester, Mass” stamped on the back., 1889

BACK: This apothecary card for Rubifoam for the Teeth displays an illustration of three young ladies posing for a picture. “Bush & Co., 56 Front St., Worcester, Mass” stamped on the back., 1889

BACK: This apothecary card for Rubifoam for the Teeth displays an illustration of three young ladies posing for a picture. “Bush & Co., 56 Front St., Worcester, Mass” stamped on the back., 1889

A Victorian trade card promoting two products, one a cologne and the other a “perfect liquid dentifrice” for the teeth called Rubifoam. The little girl seems so happy to brush her teeth and show her smile, 1899

1890 advertising card for Rubifoam from E. W. Hoyt & Co.

1890 advertising card for Rubifoam from E. W. Hoyt & Co.

Calendar for 1890. The card describes the perfume and the teeth cleaner. The products are for sale by Washington Chase, dry goods, groceries and drugs, in Newcomb, New York.

Calendar for 1890. The card describes the perfume and the teeth cleaner. The products are for sale by Washington Chase, dry goods, groceries and drugs, in Newcomb, New York.

Hoyt's Rubifoam for the Teeth trade card – front 1894

Hoyt’s Rubifoam for the Teeth trade card – front 1894

1895 Ad for Liquid Dentifrice Rubifoam

1895 Ad for Liquid Dentifrice Rubifoam

Rubifoam dentifice 1896

Rubifoam dentifice 1896

Original 1896 color print ad for the Rubifoam, a liquid dentifrice from E. W. Hoyt & Company located in Lowell, Massachusetts.

Original 1896 color print ad for the Rubifoam, a liquid dentifrice from E. W. Hoyt & Company located in Lowell, Massachusetts.

1898 Ad for Rubifoam Tooth Powder

1898 Ad for Rubifoam Tooth Powder

Rubifoam for the Teeth, 1900

Rubifoam for the Teeth, 1900

Rubifoam The Delicious Dentifrice, date unknown

Rubifoam The Delicious Dentifrice, date unknown

The Teeth, Their Care and Preservation. Lowell, Mass.: E.W. Hoyt, 1901. This catalog is filled with information focusing on prevention of tooth decay through the use of the Company's Rubifoam dentifrice. The idea that decay was caused by bacteria was apparently a recent one in 1901.

The Teeth, Their Care and Preservation. Lowell, Mass.: E.W. Hoyt, 1901. This catalog is filled with information focusing on prevention of tooth decay through the use of the Company’s Rubifoam dentifrice. The idea that decay was caused by bacteria was apparently a recent one in 1901.

1904 Advert – Rubifoam

1904 Advert – Rubifoam

From St. Nicholas [serial] 1903 Conducted by Mary Mapes Dodge

From St. Nicholas [serial] 1903 Conducted by Mary Mapes Dodge

From St. Nicholas [serial] 1903 Conducted by Mary Mapes Dodge

From St. Nicholas [serial] 1903 Conducted by Mary Mapes Dodge

From St. Nicholas [serial] 1903 Conducted by Mary Mapes Dodge

From St. Nicholas [serial] 1903 Conducted by Mary Mapes Dodge

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About Jessica

I am the supervisor of the analysis of the archaeological collection recovered from the Old Main excavation.
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3 Responses to Rubifoam for the Teeth, E. W. Hoyt & Co., Lowell, MA

  1. Cliff Hoyt says:

    Hi Just a note that the website you posted for Cliff & Linda Hoyt has been terminated and replaced by http://www.cliffhoyt.com/ewhoyt.htm
    Thanks

  2. Yvonne Bousquet says:

    How much is the bottle worth

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