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A Tall Order: 1937

A Tall Order: 1937

Washington, D.C., circa 1937. "Elder Michaux's Happy News Cafe." Inside the restaurant run by enterprising radio evangelist Solomon Lightfoot Michaux. Harris & Ewing Collection glass negative. View full size.


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The way the US economy is going on, we just may need a revival of "Good News Cafes" or something similar to them. There are too many Americans out of work and down on their luck these days.

Elder Michaux

I watched the Youtube clip of the Rev Michaux preaching, his Gospel Choir singing and his congregation joining in. I saw his preaching as extraordinarily spirited. His charisma was nothing short of amazing. I found myself clapping in time with the congregants and choir. I am not a particularly religious person, but there was something uplifiting about him and his parishioners. I have bookmarked the clip and will go back to it whenever I need a little cheering up.

Solomon Lightfoot Michaux

Rev. Michaux of Washington was one of the earliest black preachers on the radio, and almost certainly the first on television (on the DuMont network in the late '40s).

A history of his interesting, and controversial, life.

The congregation he founded, the Church of God, is still in operation today on Georgia Avenue across from the Howard campus. The cafe though seems to be long gone.

Dad, can I have a pop?

Mr. Mel's comment got me to thinking about the soda pop we kids would get from those ubiquitous Coke boxes. I recall, on a hot summer day, how incredibly cold the bottles were as they sat in the ice water waiting for young lips. And, yes, Coke was just one of the great brands lurking below the surface. You had Nehi, 7-Up, Dad's Root beer, Yoo-Hoo, and so many others. We loved collecting the colorful bottle caps and nailing them to the sides of our tree house. And when we traveled in hot weather (no air conditioning, ya know!) we would start agitating to stop at the nearest gas station to get a pop. Wonderful memories, if not wonderful nutrition!

Things Go Better With Coke

Ah, the ubiquitous Coca-Cola ice box, probably obtained from the bottler, route-man or previous tenant. Some of the best drinks I've ever had came from one of those boxes and not necessarily a Coke; Mission Orange comes to mind. You really have to hand it to the Coca-Cola Company, it is without a doubt our country's best product promoter.

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