KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI – Large consumer products companies like Proctor & Gamble and Colgate Palmolive have sometimes complicated the sale of household products. Endless product line extensions and umpteen variations on products have confused consumers who like the product as it was. Most recently, the trend has been the mixingMORE HERE

Got to love the funny little American brand names that serve small product niches. With these brands, the product markets are small, and so is the competition. Little advertising is needed, and is mostly word of mouth. One such niche is the category of brands that solve unique problems; inMORE HERE

Recently, Coleman brought back its original steel cooler. It’s sold as an exclusive for the 50th anniversary of the sporting goods supply company Cabela’s. It’s part of a trend of retro products, reintroduced as specialty products for particular retailers, similar to Fisher-Price toys sold at Cracker Barrel and vintage TideMORE HERE

This vintage flour sifter was made by the cooking utensil brand Androck. Androck products were made by the Washburn Company, which was founded in the 19th century in Massachusetts. Androck was a brand for all sorts of colorful and cool kitchen items. Well-made and amusingly designed, their products are stillMORE HERE

WEST PARIS, MAINE – There is something very American about toothpicks, and a great, American-made brand is Penley. Rather a shame that many brands sold today are made in China. After all, how difficult is it to make a toothpick, and can’t the production be automated enough? I find itMORE HERE

BLOSSOM, TEXAS – We hear from fans of the Peanut Rounder. It’s “soft and delicious” soft textured peanut candy made by Anderson Candy Company. Blossom is in Lamar County, in the northern part of the state. The company apparently has its roots in the 1940s, when a fellow named DanMORE HERE

TEMPE, Arizona – One of America’s oldest houseware brands, Jacob Bromwell, is doing it the old-school way. The U.S. company is still making retrograde products such as tin cups, frying pans, chimney flue covers and fireplace popcorn poppers. The products are handcrafted, and made in a historically correct fashion, muchMORE HERE

CHICAGO – Back in the 1950s, Bab-O was one of the top bathroom and kitchen cleansers, along with Ajax and Comet. Today, the cleanser is distributed by Fitzpatrick Brothers of Chicago. The brand shows up at assorted variety and specialty stores. Here, the current packaging, a gel version with bleach.MORE HERE

St. LOUIS – An enduring bug killing name is Enoz, known for fly swatters and moth balls. Founded in 1946, the products are still made in the United States. To many Americans, the smell of Enoz is the smell of winter’s end and winter’s arrival, when woolens come out ofMORE HERE

Elizabethville, Penn. – Carriage brands that might have been around during, say, the time of Little House on the Prairie would be gone. Perhaps most are, but one wagon brand is still around. It’s the company Swab Wagon Co., makers of fire and rescue trucks, pumpers and animal transports. SwabMORE HERE