Cosmic Yellow Pages

While gathering the myriad items associated with the Cosmic Aeroplane, Blogmaster Michael heard from Ken Sanders that the shop commissioned original artwork for advertisements to be placed in the commercial telephone directory.

Cosmic Yellow Pages Advertisements from 1976 and 1977 -- Art and lettering by Neil Passey.

Cosmic Yellow Pages Advertisements from 1977 and 1976 — Art and lettering by Neil Passey.

Further research found these old fragile phone books, printed on the most acidic pulp paper, stored in the Rare Books Division of the Marriott Library. They outlined a rough history of the shop. These advertisements were sometimes reprinted as bookmarks or business cards, but every one was seen by hundreds or thousands of customers.

The following images and PDFs were photographed with the physical assistance of the Rare Books Department staff, especially Lezann Keshmiri — with infinite thanks from Blogmeister Michael. NOTE: Patience is a virtue when loading large PDF files.

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1967 to 1968 — For the first two years of the Cosmic Aeroplane’s existence, there were no listings in the paid advertisement section of the “Bell System’s” phone books. However, Polk’s Directory listed them as a “Psychedelic Shop” in late 1967.

From a scan by Steve Jones.

First location of the Cosmic Aeroplane — From a scan by Steve Jones.

PDF of this complete page from Polk’s Directory of 1967

NOTE: The store moved from 871 9th South to its second location, two doors east, at 875 9th South during these early days.

1969 to 1973 — The Yellow Pages listed the third Cosmic location on South Temple under Gift Shops:

The Cosmic Aeroplane was near the Union Pacific Depot in 1969.

The Cosmic Aeroplane relocated to a space near the still-extant Union Pacific Depot in 1969.

The PDF files below show entire pages from phone books of the following years:

1969  1970  1971  1972  1973

The corner of 9th South and 9th East continues as an Alternative center into the 21st century.

The corner of 9th South and 9th East continues as an Alternative center in the 21st century.

Former Cosmic partner Jack Bills opened a shop of his own, called The Connection, near the corner of 9th and 9th, and bought an advertisement in 1973. (Above)

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1974 and 1975 — The fourth incarnation of the Cosmic Aeroplane was in the Yellow Pages under Gift Shops, but was also on the Book Stores list by 1975:

NOTE: The Central Book Exchange was still in business as of 2014.

NOTE: Central Book Exchange was still in business as of 2014.

The PDF files below show entire pages from the phone books of the following years.

1974 (Listed under Gift Shops) 1975 (Listed under Gift Shops)
1975
(Listed under Book Stores)

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Cosmic Aeroplane officially added the word “Books” to its name, in one form or another, while moving to the fifth (and last) location:

Quarter page advertisement from 1976.

Quarter page advertisement by Neil Passey 1976.

This PDF file shows the entire page from 1976.

Quarter page advertisement signed by Neil Passey.

Quarter page advertisement signed by Neil Passey 1977.

This PDF file shows the entire page from 1977.

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For the next seven years, Cosmic Aeroplane purchased advertisements on two nearby pages in the phone directory:

(L to R) Quarter page ad from pg 177; Text and column ad from pg 179 -- Art and lettering by Neil Passey.

(L to R) Quarter page ad from 1978; Text and column ads from 1978 — Art and lettering by Neil Passey.


PDF of entire page #177 — 1978
 
    PDF of entire page #179 — 1978

Quarter page ad from 1979 -- artist unverified.

Quarter page ad from 1979 — Artist unverified.


PDF of entire page #207 — 1979

The single-column advertisement on the following page was new as well:

Single column ad from 1979 -- Art by Neil Passey.

Single column ad from 1979 — Art by Neil Passey.

PDF of entire page #208 — 1979

Quarter page advertisement from 1980 -- Artist unverified.

Quarter page advertisement from 1980 — Artist unverified.

PDF of entire page #215 — 1980

The single column advertisement was different yet again:

Single column ad from 1980 -- Artist unknown.

Single column ad from 1980 — Artist unknown.

PDF of entire page 216 from 1980

NOTE: These same ads were repeated in the 1981 Yellow Pages.

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Double ads continued from 1982 through 1984:

Quarter page advertisement used in 1983, 1984, and 1985 -- Artist unknown.

Quarter page advertisement used in 1982, 1983, 1984, and 1985 — Artist unknown.

PDF of page #195 from 1982

Text ads replaced graphics on the additional page during these three years:

Single column text advertisement from 1982, 1983, and 1984.

Single column text advertisement from 1982, 1983, and 1984.

PDF of page #196 from 1982

NOTE: The exact same advertisements were printed in 1982, 1983, and 1984.

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Single advertisements were the rule from 1985 onward:

Two column advertisement from 1985.

Three column advertisement from 1985.

PDF of entire page #201 from 1985

Two column advertisement from 1986.

Three column advertisement from 1986-1987.

PDF of entire page #238 from 1986-1987 edition

Two column advertisement from 1987-1988.

Two column advertisement from 1987-1988.

PDF of entire page #236 from the 1987-1988 Edition

Two column advertisement, used both in 1988 and 1989.

Two column advertisement, used in both 1988 and 1989.

PDF of entire page #279 in the 1988-1989 edition

The Cosmic Aroplane ran this same graphic in their final Yellow Pages advertisement:

PDF of entire page #275 in the 1989-1990 edition

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CODA — The West Bay of the final Cosmic Aeroplane building housed a shop called Stargazer, which employed several Cosmic staff members until the end of 1991:

Single column advertisement from page #635 of the 1990-1991 edition.

Single column advertisement from page #635 of the 1990-1991 Yellow Pages.

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The East Bay became the home of Comics Utah for most of another decade, inheriting the old address, and a portion of the old customers:

Two column ad for Comics Utah, which was totally unaffiliated with the Cosmic Aeroplane.

Two column ad for Comics Utah, which was totally unaffiliated with the Cosmic Aeroplane.

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We actively request your contributions of pictures, memorabilia, and oral histories concerning the Cosmic Aeroplane — please contact our blogmeister: mike_evans_exile@yahoo.com

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258_logo_combo000wwDISCLAIMER: Any advertisements you may see below this page are artifacts of our blog-hosting service and are totally unrelated to this project.

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About Michael Evans

Michael has lived in Montana, Washington State (East and West), Holland, and England, but he was born in Salt Lake City, and graduated from the University of Utah.
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One Response to Cosmic Yellow Pages

  1. TF says:

    Comics Utah had both the East and West bays of the building from the beginning, if I understand correctly. The West bay wasn’t given up until long after Comics Utah was acquired by another company in California, after Stephan (the original owner) retired. Just wanted to clear that up!

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