Movie attendance plummeted during the Hard Times of the 1930s. Savvy marketers at Salem China and other potteries sold theater managers on the idea of giving away free dishes to women to attract viewers. “Dish Night” promotions were wildly successful. Salem sold train cars full of their now-famous Tricorne pattern to theaters. “Free to each lady” offers brought colorful dinnerware into Depression era homes, controversy to the movie business, and even riots when too many gravy boats appeared. Professor Kathy Fuller-Seeley explores this story through historic images and photos from the Salem archives and her research into Hollywood history.

Kathy Fuller-Seeley is Professor of film history at the University of Texas at Austin.

This event is in partnership with the International Museum of Dinnerware Design.

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