Berry Company Exhibit Opening at Carillon Park
Once upon a time, there were 350 million Yellow Pages in homes and businesses nationwide. Did you know The Berry Company, founded in Dayton OH, was the largest Yellow Pages advertising agency in the United States?
A new interactive exhibit at Carillon Historical Park
explores the Berry Company's history. The permanent addition to Carillon Park's Heritage Center of Manufacturing and Entrepreneurship will open to the public on July 7th.
Loren M. Berry was a pioneer in the development of the Yellow Pages, which became one of America’s most widely consulted books. In 1910, he founded his company at a rented desk in downtown Dayton and turned it into the nation's largest independent telephone directory advertising and publishing companies, earning him the nickname “Mr. Yellow Pages”. The Berry Company had over 3,000 employees nationwide, with 700 in the Dayton area.
For over 120 years, The Yellow Pages connected buyers and sellers across America. Every business was listed and every household received the directories. There was never a more widespread resource that facilitated local commerce like the Yellow Pages.
AT&T, which came up with the walking fingers logo, never trademarked it so that businesses could use it in their promotions to encourage prospective customers to “Find Them Fast” in the Yellow Pages.
The Yellow Pages grew to be a $20-billion dollar industry in the U.S. More businesses used the Yellow Pages as their primary means to attract customers than any other resource. By the late 1990s, there were over 350 million directories in homes and businesses.