See One Of WOBM’s Very First Help Wanted Ads [50 Memories in 50 Days]
One of the great things about having archives going back 50 years is the fact that they can really give us a look into how life was half a century ago.
This 1968 help wanted ad for WOBM is definitely a look into a different time.
We went on the air on March 1st, 1968 (a Friday, in case you were wondering), but before we could start operations we needed a full staff, both on-air and off.
That's where this help wanted ad from the January 21, 1968 edition of the Asbury Park Press (about 6 weeks before broadcast operations began) comes in:
SECRETARY - All around girl Friday for WOBM, Toms River. Ocean County's first radio station. Steno, typing, some knowledge of bookkeeping - varied, interesting and challenging duties. We need an intelligent, dependable girl who's not afraid of hard work. Good salary.
Throughout this page of various help wanted ads, from babysitters to scientists and much more, the term "girl Friday" comes up a number of times.
Merriam-Webster defines the term as referring to, "a female assistant (as in an office) entrusted with a wide variety of tasks".
The term originally comes from the 1719 novel Robinson Crusoe, in which the main character had a native helper who he named "Friday", which led to the terms "man Friday" and "girl Friday" both being used to denote a general jack of all trades type helper.
In fact, there was a popular Cary Grant movie in 1940 called "His Girl Friday", which repopularized the term in the middle of the 20th century.
Of course, there are a lot of things about this ad that you wouldn't see in a help wanted ad these days, but nobody would argue that things have changed quite a bit since 1968.
We've got a lot more gems like this one in the WOBM archives, so stay tuned as we continue to look back on 50 Memories in 50 Days leading up to the big day on March 1st!
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