In support of local merchants, an article discouraging peddlers in Bossier Parish appeared in the January 19, 1928 issue of The Bossier Banner.

“The next time an out of town silk stocking salesman comes to your door, Mrs. Bossierite, why not greet him with a more or less icy look and the following line of talk.”

“My dear sir, of course I need stockings—who ever saw a woman that didn’t need more silk stockings?  But the merchants of Bossier Parish can supply my needs.  And if they haven’t the kind I wish, they will be glad to order them for me.  And as these parish merchants are my neighbors and friends, and as they are helping to keep alive all the worth-while enterprises and institutions of the community, I much prefer to pay them the commission to be derived from my purchases of clothing of any kind.  Your goods may be all right [sic], but I know that the stockings sold to me by my neighbors, the Bossier Parish merchants, are all right [sic].  Good Day!”

“Just talk to all itinerant peddlers in this fashion.  Remember that whatever they have to offer, whether portable palace or collapsible milking stool, may be obtained through the home merchant.”

“The parish merchants are an accommodating lot.  If they don’t carry in stock the goods you may wish, they’ll order them for you.”

“And just let this fact soak in—on every article sold, some one [sic] is going to get a commission.”

“Pay this commission to the man who is going to keep the money circulating in his and your home town.”

“The spring crop o agents of one sort or another is about fat enough to kill.  Let’s declare warfare on the pestiferous army.”

“Bossier Parish does not even get the benefit of a peddler’s license from most of the folk representing outside concerns.”

Just remember this, Mrs. Bossierite, when the next peddler tempts you with silky voice and silk socks.”

Numerous ordinances to keep out peddlers, solicitors and itinerant merchants were passed by many small towns.  Learn more at the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center.

Ann Middleton is Director of the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center. She can be reached at (318) 746-7717 or amiddlet@state.lib.la.us.