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So, I always thought that window shopping was a product of the late 19th or early 20th century, the plate glass windows of the Bon Ton, and The Lady’s Paradise.

Providence Gazette and Country Journal, 4-18-1772

Providence Gazette and Country Journal, 4-18-1772

I was wrong.  Check out the last line in this ad from the Providence Gazette and Country Journal of April, 1772:

“Any Person not wanting to purchase, but having a Mind to see the greatest Pennyworths, shall be waited on with great Chearfulness, by their very humble Servant, PAUL ALLEN.”

In case we forget, the past is there to remind us that the consumer culture started much, much earlier than we think it did. Stop blaming Don Draper: I give you Paul Allen.