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Little Marvel Records from Woolworth's

Sixpenny treats from the 1920s

 

The Little Marvel logo from the gramophone record of the same name, which was sold in Woolworths from 1921 to 1926
The Woolworths Diamond W motif, which was embedded on the label of Little Marvel records
just sixpence from F. W. Woolworth stores.
         

To promote competition and get the best deal for customers, the Woolworths buyer bought records from two suppliers. While Crystallate developed Mimosa, the Vocalion Gramophone Record Company under the Little Marvel label. Vocalion was a large company in the US, but comparatively unknown in the UK. Little Marvels were launched on trial in 1921, with the range extending into all stores from 1923 onwards. They carried the Woolworths "Diamond W" motif on the label.

Little Marvel Gramophone Records like this one were produced for F. W. Woolworth by the Vocallion Gramophone Record Company between 1921 and 1928
         

Little Marvel discs played at 80rpm and offered a wholly owned track on one side and a halfpenny royalty track on the other, and rarely named the performing artist. To the frustration of collectors, the early discs did not carry catalogue numbers. Of the two labels Little Marvel proved the more popular partly because of the mix of titles carried. If anything the recording quality was not quite as good as Mimosa but their range of titles was better and more up-tempo. Little Marvel discs were offered for sixpence right through until 1928. Many records are still in circulation, and many of today's grandparents and great grandparents bought their first gramophone record on the Little Marvel label - and kept it for old time's sake. You can click one of the links below to sample some of the music and, if you like, download a copy courtesy of the Woolworths Museum.

         
         

The move to a six inch version allowed the length of the recording to increase to two minutes. At the same time Vocalion extended their range to include Kids records, similar to the material that their rivals Crystallate were putting out on their Kiddyphone label. There are examples of the longer records and some kids titles in the next set of examples. Click a link to hear a song.

     
 
         
         

 

Links to related exhibits in the Woolworths Museum

1920s Gallery    1920s Records Page     Little Wonder   Mimosa    Little Marvel   Victory      Museum Home