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Little Wonder Records

introducing ordinary Americans to recorded sound

 

One of the original F. W. Woolworth stores in the USA - Reading, Pennsylvania, pictured in about 1914

 

Little Wonder gramophone records were stocked in some US stores towards the end of the Great War and into the 1920s

Henry Waterson's Little Wonders were sold at Woolworth's in North America and other 5 &10¢ Stores. The 10¢ discs were single-sided and played at 80 rpm, giing one minute's sound. The grooves had to be tightly packed to fit on the tiny records, meaning the sound quality was modest. They were sold without sleeves to keep the price low, and introduced ordinary people to recorded sound for the first time.

The era's big name labels, including Columbia, Victor and Edison sold ten or twelve inch records for around one dollar each, which had kept them outside the price-bracket of most households. That all changed with Little Wonder. The records have a special link with Woolworth's; many were recorded in Columbia's studios at the foot of the Woolworth Building in New York. Please listen and enjoy.