Tag Archives: Tiffany

Has the Winter of our Discontent given way to the Flowers that bloom in the Spring, tra la?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/19/march-20-first-day-of-spring_n_2906921.html#slide=2225685

I for one don’t really care whether the vernal equinox happens on March 20, 21, or 22, I always celebrate it on March 21, just as I always celebrate the solstices on December 21 and June 21.  What’s more, I treat all the seasons as having exactly 91.25 days except during leap year because that way four seasons make a year.  However, the exposition of facts suggesting the contrary in the above article forwarded to me by Barbartzin Cihuacuamomohtli in the former CSA capital of Montgomery is quite erudite and interesting and attributed to someone from the Hayden Planetarium who ought to know.

Although I do celebrate the Spring Equinox and the Solstices, I find the Autumnal Equinox less stirring, although I don’t go as far as my former House Elf Antonio Rodriguez who once opined that “Otoño es la epoca del año más triste.”  Still, from a historical standpoint, it’s hard to celebrate the Fall Equinox unless you’re a descendent of Robespierre and really long for the good old days when the original French “Department of Homeland Security” (aka “Committee on Public Safety”) instituted and promulgated the original Reign of Terror starting with the execution of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette.  As an aside, Queen Marie Antoinette has risen considerably in my estimation since I read that she apologized to her executioner for stepping on his foot on the way to the guillotine on a crowded executioner’s platform.  I anticipate that the Reign of Terror over which the Department of Homeland Security has been designed to preside will make the French episode of the 1790s look like the amateur small time affair or rehearsal which it really was….

Yes, by contrast and without doubt, Spring is traditionally the happiest time of year, when new growth and flowers and the birds and the bees all seem to conspire to compose a poetic statement of the natural order which…. sometimes just make a 53rd year old curmudgeon with a serious toothache want to regurgitate all over someone’s beautiful flower bed.  And there are indeed an abundance of beautiful flower beds in New Orleans 70130, 70115, and 70118 (which is the extent of my wanderings most days—the French Quarter 70112, except for Place St. Louis aka Jackson Square, is not known for its flowers).

Ah, Springtime: Young lovers, even brothers and sisters like Siegmund and Sieglinde, notice that wintersturme wichen dem wonnemonde, and for once I find myself in a bad enough mood to sympathize with Fricka’s anger over the whole business: “Who’s ever heard of such a thing, a brother and sister as lovers?” She asks her husband Wotan in Richard Wagner’s Die Walküre.  Sympathetic with his wife’s concerns always and so the model of a good husband, Wotan responds, “Well, as of today, you have heard of it.”  I have spent my life changing the characters with whom I most identify in Wagner’s Ring.  When I was young I wanted to be Siegried, but then I kind of realized that Siegfried was a bit of an idiot who would take a drink from anybody and really never did anything right or substantial after he killed that rather harmless house- (or cave-) bound Dragon Fafnir who never really bothered anybody but just liked sleeping aid all his treasure.   Then I started identifying with Siegmund, slightly more mature but no luckier.  Finally I have come to identify with Wotan “the saddest of all”.  What I’m worried about is that I may yet live long enough to identify with Alberich the Dwarf, the final survivor of the epic of the Ring….. and that just wouldn’t be very poetic at all…. but the danger is there….

I came of age as a teenager in New Orleans, first felt the pangs of (post-secondary) young love here and all that rot.  And now as a (soon to be) 53 year old curmudgeon I am back in this wonderful town, reflecting on the essential lack of difference and distinction between the institutions of marriage and prostitution, despite my lifelong fondness for the Sumerian and Akkadian love poetry of Inanna and Dumuzi (which of course was all about Dumuzi rising from the dead in the Spring—after Inanna killed him, but let’s not quibble here, she mourned and cried copious tears AFTER she killed him—just as Brunnhilde did after she arranged Siegfried’s Death in Gtterdaemerung…).  New Orleans has forced me to come to grips with the notion that, as doggedly libertarian as I sometimes try to be, I really don’t like prostitution or prostitutes.  But (even worse) I like women who pretend to be something else when they’re even less honest and (hence) less moral by virtue of their pretense to be something else.  (Only tangentially, see footnote* regarding one rather New Orlenean girl by the name of Lila H.—this particular epistle was most unequivocally NOT written by me, but I came upon it as part of a collection of similar letters).  

Two years ago I was obsessed with another rather extraordinary “courtesan” I had met in New Orleans at the same time as Lila H. and Sylvia F. named Tiffany H. (TCH moved to ABQ where she became “La Bruja de Algodones” in a beautiful desert corner  of New Mexico off I-25).  Now Tiffany was indeed quite beautiful, not at all “cheap” and certainly not tawdry.  She was talented in several musical instruments, song, song painting, weaving, astrology, magic, and deadlier arts as well, but had that strange kiss of the spider woman which made for short-lived relationships…. And what really bothers me is that prostitutes are “cheap” girls….and wives like Elena, the mother of my son Charlie, who at her sole behest no longer speaks to me are just really really really expensive…. And so in general, there are times I wish I had been born gay so that I wouldn’t have had to deal with the whole situation…. But as Happy as I have been for most of my life, I have never been gay…..

And the reality is, right now, that the Winter of our Discontent (about the Islamic Communist Party Chairman Barack Hussein Obama’s second anti-constitutional inauguration as de facto President and Dictator, the acknowledgment by his simply appalling Attorney General Holder that Drone’s deadly force may be [and that means certainly will be—if they haven’t already been] used to eliminate undesirable American citizens someday, and all the other developments of the past 91 days really just don’t inspire one to think happy thoughts.

Re-elected California Senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer continue with their crusade to disarm ordinary Americans while buying otherwise illegal hollow-point bullets to arm the domestic police as minions of the Department of Homeland Security.  It’s all enough to make one sing, with Lord High Executioner Koko from G & S’ Mikado, “The flowers that bloom in the spring “tra la” have nothing to do with the case.”

In general, it seems to me that Western civilization, American Political Society as it once existed, and the magnificent American economy are all going to hell in a hand basket, so why and how can we celebrate Spring—“Winter kept us warm covering earth in forgetful snow”  or in the case of New Orleans and most of the deep South, forgetful brown (dead) leaves…. Wintersturme wichen dem wonnemonde — my ass!

Speaking of asses, now that Barack Obama has turned the Democratic Party so radically against America and the American dream, I think that all Patriotic Americans who, with me, might like to either call themselves Jeffersonian and/or Jacksonian Democrats ought to work with me to resurrect the Crowing Red Rooster as the Symbol of the Democratic Party—if anyone has examples of old Southern Democratic Posters or political advertisements of any kind with Red Rooster symbols—please get in touch with me…. I would like to start a large collection…. I suppose that will be my Spring 2013 Project to Dishonor Obama and all that he stands for….

*I swear under penalty of perjury that I did not write the following text nor was it written about anything I personally experienced, but I have  seen and experienced a sufficient number of similar events with one of the parties involved that I believe that this does pretty well summarize the life of a certain New Orleans “Failed Debutante” well-on her way at age 23, soon to be 24, to becoming  a “Delta Dawn” of the next generation:

Lila: I just don’t ever want to see you drunk again.
I can’t recall exactly how many times you’ve completely fucked me over. Of course, none of this was your fault. It’s not your fault that you’re a sloppy drunk incapable of taking credit for your actions. I mean, trying to kill a guy on the back of his motorcycle, pissing yourself on the sidewalk and cursing the man who kept you alive. That’s not your fault. No, that’s perfectly acceptable behavior.

If you still do have my phone number, if by some miracle it hasn’t fallen into the vodka and bourbon fueld vortex that is your mind, and you give it to some man and he calls me and says that you’re passed out in his hotel room I am going to tell him that I’m your psychiatrist and that you need to be restrained, gagged, and to call the police immediately. Don’t trust a word you say, you’ve escaped from the mental hospital, you’re a homicidal nymphomaniac. Or maybe I’ll say that I am your pimp and that he can have [edited: you anyway] he wants, free.

What I’m trying to say, Lila, is that you are possibly the worst friend a man could have. A user, an abusive drunk that no one should ever have to tolerate. I know you won’t even accept this judment, and yeah, I’m judging you, I feel I have the right after watching you screaming cuntcuntcunt, tears streaming down your face, because I wouldn’t let you go and fight a girl. I know you can’t accept this judgement. And I do feel bad for you. I really do. But this is the last time you treat me this way. Not that you give a fuck, there are plenty of other men to use, aren’t there? Plenty of other guys.

Anyway, enjoy. This time tomorrow you’ll probably be ass-up in an alleyway getting train-fucked by the boyfriend of some girl you picked a fight with and his friends, or blowing some guy in a suit in a bathroom because he was nice enough to give you a shiny piece of plastic.

Remember this, if nothing else: You had a horrible time last night. I know you don’t care that you ruined my evening, but you ruined your own. Your insistence on trying to assault that girl had you crying and screaming for around a half hour, then angry all night. You stupid bitch. And, by the way, it was PURE paranoia. I noticed you had lost one of the wings off that stupid headband that made you ‘feel special and pretty’ at least ten or twenty minutes before you were anywhere near that girl. I didn’t say anything in order to avoid a scene.

So yeah. You’re paranoid. Have you been diagnosed?

Because of that you missed out on a great night. I treat.. excuse me, treatED you well. That’s done with. And I genuinely feel like a load has been taken off my back. I gave you the benefit of the doubt three times now. That’s twice too many. We’re done, bitch. If you want my friendship and you decide to beg for it back and I can understand what you’re saying you’re doing it wrong [edited for younger audience…]

Excelsior! and Eureka! 165 Years of California Gold: from Sutter’s Mill to Jennifer Lawrence (January 24, 1848-January 24, 2013)

On January 24, 1848, gold (AU 79 on the Periodic Chart of the Elements) was discovered on the South Branch of the American River at John Augustus Sutter’s Mill in “New Helvetia” (New Switzerland), California.  Sutter’s history kind of set the tone in California for a culture of real estate piracy by “claim jumping” and disregard for any rights except those established by possession of money……

At one time the absolute ruler of what amounted to a private kingdom along the Sacramento River, John Sutter saw his immense wealth and power overrun in the world’s rush to pick California clean of gold.

Sutter was born John Augustus Sutter in Baden, Germany, though his parents had originally come from Switzerland, a lineage of which he was especially proud. In 1834, faced with impossible debt, he decided to try his fortunes in America and, leaving his family in a brother’s care, set sail for New York. There he decided that the West offered him the best opportunity for success, and he moved to Missouri, where for three years he operated as a trader on the Santa Fe Trail.

By 1838, Sutter had determined that Mexican California held the promise of fulfilling his ambitious dreams, and he set off along the Oregon Trail, arriving at Fort Vancouver, near present-day Portland, Oregon, in hopes of finding a ship that would take him to San Francisco Bay. His journey involved detours to the Hawaiian Islands and to a Russian colony at Sitka, Alaska, but Sutter made the most of his wanderings by trading advantageously along the way. When he finally arrived in California in 1839, Sutter met first with the provincial governor in Monterey and secured permission to establish a settlement east of San Francisco (then called Yerba Buena) along the Sacramento River, in an area then occupied only by Indians.

Sutter was granted nearly fifty thousand acres and authorized “to represent in the Establishment of New Helvetia [Sutter’s Swiss-inspired name for his colony] all the laws of the country, to function as political authority and dispenser of justice, in order to prevent the robberies commited by adventurers from the United States, to stop the invasion of savage Indians and the hunting and trapping by companies from the Columbia.” In other words, Sutter was to serve the California authorities as a bulwark against the assorted threats pressing in on them from American-controlled territories to the north and east.

Ironically, as headquarters for his domain, Sutter chose a site on what he named the American River, at its junction with the Sacramento River and near the site of present-day Sacramento. Here, with the help of laborers he had brought with him from Hawaii, he built Sutter’s Fort, a massive adobe structure with walls eighteen feet high and three feet thick. Two years later, in 1841, Sutter expanded his settlement when the Russians abandoned Fort Ross, their outpost north of San Francisco, and offered to sell it to him for thirty thousand dollars. Paying with a note he never honored, Sutter practically dismantled the fort and moved its equipment, livestock and buildings to the Sacramento Valley.

Within just a few years, Sutter had achieved the grand-scale success he long dreamed of: acres of grain, a ten-acre orchard, a herd of thirteen thousand cattle, even two acres of Castile roses. His son came to share in his prosperity in 1844, and the rest of his family soon followed. At the same time, during these years Sutter’s Fort became a regular stop for the increasing number of Americans venturing into California, several of whom Sutter employed. Besides providing him with a profitable source of trade, this steady flow of immigrants provided Sutter with a network of relationships that offered some political protection when the United States seized control of California in 1846, at the outbreak of the Mexican War.

Barely a week before the war’s end, however, there occurred a chance event that would destroy all John Sutter’s achievements and yet at the same time link his name forever to one of the highpoints of American history. On the morning of January 24, 1848, a carpenter named James Marshall, who was building a sawmill for Sutter upstream on the American River near Coloma, looked into the mill’s tailrace to check that it was clear of silt and debris and saw at the water’s bottom nuggets of gold. Marshall took his discovery to Sutter, who consulted an encyclopedia to confirm it and then tried to pledge all his employees to secrecy. But within a few months, word had reached San Francisco and the gold rush was on.

Suddenly all of Sutter’s workmen abandoned him to seek their fortune in the gold fields. Squatters swarmed over his land, destroying crops and butchering his herds. “There is a saying that men will steal everything but a milestone and a millstone,” Sutter later recalled; “They stole my millstones.” By 1852, New Helvetia had been devastated and Sutter was bankrupt. He spent the rest of his life seeking compensation for his losses from the state and federal governments, and died disappointed on a trip to Washington, D.C. in 1880.

On January 24, 2013 at 8:00 p.m.: I took time off from my somewhat manic-depressive studies of Louisiana Civil Law to  go to the Prytania Movie Theatre for a free showing a a movie “Haiti Redux” where I happened to sit next to an Iranian-American student of Real Estate at New York University named Alexander who identified himself as being from Beverly Hills, California.  It seems that one of the Professors from the Real Estate Department at NYU was one of the co-producers of this movie about the efforts of various small academic and artistic groups to help in the reconstruction of Haiti after the January 12, 2013.  They came to New Orleans as a kind of “study of comparative disaster sites” I guess (seven and a half years after Katrina).  

I have previously commented on how Iranians, especially Iranians of the Jewish Faith and sub-ethnicity, have taken over Beverly Hills, so it was a weird triangulation on the world.  The movie itself was slightly interesting but kind of pointless.  Why a bunch of “do gooder” White people from New York need to go down to Haiti to tell them what their “standards” ought to be for everything in life begged (in my opinion) the question of why Haiti is such a basket case of a country in the first place.  

It makes no sense to say that Haiti is the way it is because of White Oppression of Blacks, because Haiti was the SECOND INDEPENDENT NATION IN THE NEW WORLD, after the U.S., to fight for and win its own Independence.  Basically, after the French Revolution had started in the 1790s, the Black Slaves rose up and either slaughtered or exiled the French landowners, and their country has been a living hell ever since.  Coincidence?  Karma?  Genetics?  Some combination of all three?  The movie “Haiti Redux” did not explain.

January 24, 2013, at 10:00 p.m.: Since I was already at the Prytania, and kind of bored and frustrated by the Haiti Redux movie, I decided to stick around for “Silver Linings Playbook”, not having heard or read anything about it in advance except that it had 8 nominations for Academy Awards.  This is only the third movie of Jennifer’s I have seen, but I’m already quite madly in love with her and I am very happy that she has been nominated for “Best Actress” in this piece.  To begin with, the young Katniss Everdeen, I mean Miss Lawrence, outshines the rather more sensationally ballyhooed Kristen Stewart by a factor of roughly 10,000 to 1, both as a genuine actress and a beauty with sex appeal….well, beyond any effect I can describe without using metaphors of NASA technology and intergalactic astronomical explorations.

But the movie Silver Linings Playbook scores a more important victory.  It turns the past year’s penchant for portraying ordinary Middle-Class White people as insane subjects for clinical analysis and institutional confinement into a marvelous romantic comedy.  So of Jennifer’s three movie’s I’ve seen so far: in the HUNGER GAMES, she is a heroine par excellence, a beauty with skills and brains reminiscent of her own real Kentucky frontier heritage and background.  Katniss Everdeen’s mental strength and character in that movie equate with her physical skill and practical experience.  But then in HOUSE AT THE END OF THE STREET, Jennifer’s character, though still exquisite in every way, was drawn into a tragedy of mental illness and depravity of ordinary middle class White People.  This media theme is part of the Western Power-Elite’s current campaign to destroy all vestiges of the America that was pre-1965, pre-Johnson, pre-Vietnam, pre-Johnson-Nixon, pre-Watergate, pre-Nixon-Ford, pre-degenerate malaise, pre-Carter, pre-fake Neo-Con Restoration, pre-Reagan.

But a stroke of genius—you bring Katniss Everdeen together with “Deer-Hunter” and American Icon Robert DeNiro, and you have a recipe for REGENERATING the American Middle Class Dream.  It all started out, depressingly enough, in a mental institution, no Jennifer’s character wasn’t there but she COULD have been—showing yet another real aspect of modern America that men are treated much more harshly for their transgressions than women.  I thought initially it was going to be yet another—everyone who LOOKS American as Apple Pie is Demented movie.  But the movie totally transcended all that and convincingly showed that “Temporary Insanity” is actually pretty normal and that even people who have taken a sampler of the entire menu of the nastiest psychiatric drug menu imposed by Non-American Non-Whites who have their consciousness completely together.

I have this terribly depressing fear that Obama era politics will lead to an Academy Award going either to “Beasts of the Southern Wild” (which at least is incredibly original) or to “Lincoln” which is anything but original and in fact deserves to be panned on every single historical point contained within it, but I’m casting my vote for Silver Linings Playbook and Jennifer Lawrence as the incomparable Tiffany….  OK, I’ve also confessed in the past that I tend to fall in love with any and every girl I meet named Tiffany, but this is a personal hazard of mine which has no bearing on my evaluation of the movie.  Robert DeNiro is the best I’ve seen him in many years, and this movie has truly redemptive potential at a time when America Desperately needs it.  

Strange to think of the similarities between the California Gold Rush and Hollywood Movies as the parallel and independent but key defining features of California culture…. but there they are, separated only by the difference between Northern and Southern California….

I’d say that Harvard is actually the Oldest “Trademark”/Corporate Name in the United States, Yale is 64 years younger…..if “New York Times” and “Scientific American” Qualify—why not the oldest institutions of higher learning on the continent?

America’s Oldest Brands

24/7 Wall StBy Douglas A. McIntyre, Alexander E.M. Hess and Samuel Weigley | 24/7 Wall St – Wed, Aug 22, 2012 2:54 PM EDT

Consumers, it seems, are always after the shiny new product. For some industries, the latest version is always the most popular — the newest smartphone, tablet and sneaker are always the products in highest demand. Not surprisingly, some of the most valuable brands are relatively young. Apple, Google and Nike is each worth tens of billions of dollars and has tens of millions of customers.

Nevertheless, many of the most well-known brands with the most valuable brand equity include some of the country’s oldest companies. American Express, founded in 1850, is one of the hundred most valuable brands in the world, according to a list published by Interbrand, a branding consultancy. Coca Cola, Heinz and Jack Daniels are also on the Interbrand list and are all over a hundred years old.

24/7 Wall St. went in search of America’s oldest brands. To be considered, the brand had to have remained the same — the same name and consistently associated with the same consumer product. While almost all of the brands were not nationally available in the 19th century, the products had to be nationally available today.

[More from 24/7 Wall St.: Ten Brands That Will Disappear In 2013]

Many of the oldest products were not included. Though it has been around for over 200 years, Jim Beam was previously sold as Old Tub and its name did not change to Jim Beam until the 1930s. The company that makes King Arthur flour was founded in 1790, but didn’t adopt the name until the end of the 19th century.

While there are a number of companies that were founded in America over 150 years ago, most remained small regional brands. Yuengling has been brewing since 1829, but continues to be a beer that’s almost exclusively distributed in the Northeast.

Of course, some brands made the cut. Remington does not make the same rifles it did in 1848, but the current models are continuations of the brand’s core product. The New York Times (NYSE:NYT), founded in 1851, has a different typeface and trim size today, but is very similar to the one printed 150 years ago. Even NYT.com has the same front page layout.

What does it take for a brand to survive and thrive for over 150 years, which is as long as Brooks Brothers’ ready-to-wear suit brand has been around? Most brands on our list have done well for many decades because they continue to be well-regarded by consumers. Remington rifles are among the best made in the world. Tiffany silver is still considered the “gold standard” for products in its category. Each of these products may have different competition than a century ago, but continues to be relevant in the current industry.

Will Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) or McDonald’s (NYSE: MCD) survive into the next century? There is no assurance of that. They could become unexpectedly overwhelmed by competition, or they could radically change their businesses. There is no way to predict product longevity, as least based on the variety of brands on this list and the competition each has had to survive.

These are America’s Oldest Brands.

1. Baker’s Chocolate

> Product: Chocolate
> Product launched: 1780
> Company founded: 1780

Baker’s Chocolate has, as a brand, been produced consistently since 1780, when Dr. John Baker purchased the outstanding shares in his own company from his partner’s widow. One representative of Kraft Foods, present owners of the brand, told 24/7 Wall St. that “not much has changed, except the packaging.” Yet even the packaging has remained remarkably consistent over time. La Belle Chocolaterie, the female figure seen on packages of Baker’s, has been featured on Baker’s Chocolate packages for over 100 years.

2. Crane & Co.

> Product: Stationery
> Product launched: 1801
> Company founded: 1799

Crane Paper has been made since 1799, when Zenas Crane began milling cotton paper. Under Zenas, the company began producing stationery paper in 1801. Among those who used stationary crafted from Crane’s paper were Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, and the Queen Mother—who announced the celebration of her 100th birthday using Crane’s paper. Crane & Co. has continued to use cotton paper, even as other companies have moved to tree pulp for making paper, a cheaper alternative. The company’s cotton paper is not just used for stationary, but also for currency. Since 1879, the company has provided the U.S. Treasury with currency paper, a business which accounts for a lion’s share of their revenue.

[More from 24/7 Wall St.: America’s Most (and Least) Livable States]

3. Remington

> Product: Rifles and rifle barrels
> Product launched: 1818
> Company founded: 1818

Remington was founded in Ilion Gulch, New York by Eliphalet Remington II. Though it started by making gun barrels, according to the National Firearms Museum, Remington made its first completed firearm in 1848, when it was contracted by the U.S. Navy to manufacture 1,000 Jenks carbine rifles. The company has evolved somewhat since its founding. It incorporated as a stock company called E. Remington & Sons in 1865. In 1888 it was acquired by Marcellus Hartley and partners and renamed Remington Arms Company. From 1933 to 1993 it was partly, and later wholly owned by E.I du Pont de Nemours & Co. Despite all these changes, Remington rifles have been a constant. Of course, the rifles Remington makes have evolved to the present semi-automatic, autoloading models manufactured and sold today.

4. Schaefer Beer

> Product: Beer
> Product launched: 1842
> Company founded: 1842

F. & M. Schaefer Brewing Company, which makes Schaefer Beer, was founded by brothers Frederick and Maximilian Schaefer. Frederick had immigrated to the U.S. from Germany in 1838, and Maximilian followed him in 1839, bringing along a formula for lager. By 1842, the two brothers purchased a small brewery in New York City. Over the 19th and 20th century, the company, and its beers, developed a wider following. An advertising campaign created the famous jingle, Schaefer — “the one beer to have when you are having more than one.” By 1971, more than 5 million barrels of beer had been brewed. In 1981, the F. & M. Schaefer Brewing Company was purchased by the Stroh Brewing Company, which was purchased by the Pabst Brewing Company in 1999. Despite these changes in ownership, Schaefer Beer is still sold today.

5. Poland Spring

> Product: Beverage
> Product launched: 1845
> Company founded: 1845

Though people tend to think bottled water is a relatively new product, Poland Spring proves them wrong. In 1845, the Ricker family began bottling and selling spring water. By 1860, Poland Spring was being sold all over the country. Driving the brand’s early fame was its affiliation with the Poland Springs Resort and its purported health benefits. The brand remains as popular as ever: Poland Spring was named the strongest bottled water brand in 2012 by the Harris Poll EquiTrend study.

6. Scientific American

> Product: Magazine
> Product launched: 1845
> Company founded: 1845

Scientific American, a magazine dedicated to science and technology, was founded in 1845 by Rufus Porter. At the time, it was a weekly broadsheet carrying the subtitle, “The Advocate of Industry and Enterprise, and Journal of Other Improvements.” Porter sold the magazine after 10 months to Orson Desaix Munn and Alfred Ely Beach for $800. The publication also founded the first branch of the U.S. Patent Agency in 1850 to give technical and legal advice to aspiring inventors. More than 140 Nobel laureates have written for Scientific American in its history. Today, the publication is owned by Macmillan Publishers Ltd. Scientific American notes that the monthly print magazine is read by 3.5 million people worldwide, and 3.88 million people a month visit its website, ScientificAmerican.com.

7. Merriam-Webster

> Product: Reference books
> Product launched: 1847
> Company founded: 1831

In 1843, G. & C. Merriam Co. purchased the rights to Noah Webster’s 1841 edition of An American Dictionary of the English Language, Corrected and Enlarged. In 1847, Merriam published its first Merriam-Webster dictionary. Though one of the country’s oldest brands, Merriam-Webster makes significant efforts to keep track of the latest linguistic trends. In Aug. 2012, the company released its list of new words to be added to its Collegiate Dictionary. The list included words such as man cave, underwater (to describe mortgages), aha moment, and gastropub.

[More from 24/7 Wall St.: America’s Worst Companies to Work For]

8. Brooks Brothers

> Product: Menswear
> Product launched: 1849
> Company founded: 1818

Brooks Brothers was founded in 1818 by Henry Sands Brooks, with the first store located in New York City. The company made the first ready-to-wear suits in 1849, and it has sold them ever since. The company notes that those flocking to California in the 1849 Gold Rush could not wait for tailors for custom clothing, relying on Brooks Brothers for their suit needs. Today, the New York-based company has approximately 200 stores in North America and an additional 130 stores in other parts of the globe. The company has greatly expanded its offerings since 1849 too, selling formal and casual wear for men, women and children.

9. Tiffany & Co.

> Product: Silver
> Product launched: 1851
> Company founded: 1837

Tiffany & Co., originally founded as a “stationery and fancy goods emporium,” has been a leader in the industry for over 150 years. The company’s importance can be seen in the impact it has had on the silverware and jewelry business. Tiffany & Co. has used the same 925/1000 standard for silver purity since 1837 — a standard later adopted by the United States government for sterling silver. At the 1867 Paris Exposition Universelle, Tiffany was the first American company to win an award for its silverware. In 1871, the company introduced a flatware pattern, called “Audobon”, which to-date remains the company’s best-selling flatware. Today, Tiffany sells silver bracelets, necklaces, piggy banks, and silverware among other items.

10. The New York Times

> Product: Newspaper
> Product launched: 1851
> Company founded: 1851

The first edition of the New York Times was published on Sept. 18, 1851. The paper began publishing its Sunday issue in April 1861. After the paper’s acquisition by Adolph S. Ochs in 1896, the Times adopted its present motto, “All the News That’s Fit to Print.” In 1912, the paper was the first to report of the Titanic’s sinking. In 1918, the Times was awarded its first Pulitzer Prize, the second year the price was offered. To date, 108 Pulitzer Prizes and citations have been given to the newspaper.