National Museum of American History
14th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW
1st Floor, West, Archives Gallery Floor Plan
Despite today’s common knowledge that tobacco products cause cancer, advertisers from the 1920s to the 1960s used representations of medical professionals to make the case that smoking was healthy. The exhibit examines these period advertisements by tobacco companies seeking to exploit the influence of doctors, dentists, and nurses to ease consumers’ anxiety over the health risks of smoking. Contemporary audiences will learn how advertisers worked to promote cigarettes in the face of the health problems they caused.