Collections of Patten Free Library. Order a copy at, item #29004.

This trade card advertising Walter G. Webber’s Drugstore was probably made in the late 1890s. Trade cards were small advertisements used by businesses to remind customers to shop at their stores again. Trade cards evolved into modern business cards in the 1900s. Many Bath businesses used this form of advertising in the late 19th century.

Walter G. Webber (1848-1906), a prominent local druggist, owned Webber’s Drugstore from 1875-1906. From 1875 to 1883, his first store was located on the east side of Front Street, opposite from Elm Street. For the next 50 years, Webber’s Drugstore was located in the Union Block, at 94 Front St. At that location, the store was damaged by the disastrous fire of 1894 that destroyed the Sagadahock House just to the south on the same side of Front Street. After Walter Webber’s death in 1906, the store was managed by Webber’s estate until the business was purchased by Merton Webber (no known relation) in 1912. The business remained at 94 Front St. until 1933, when Merton Webber moved the store to 194 Front St., going out of business permanently in 1939.

In commemoration of Maine’s bicentennial this year, The Forecaster is featuring historical highlights and artifacts from our communities’ past 200 years. This feature can be found in print and online every other week.