A large and never-before-seen original pastel by Rolf Armstrong, this Green River Soda advertisement features a glamorous pin up girl. This original pastel was found among other pastels and old lithographs in an abandoned Milwaukee, Wisconsin warehouse building.
Decades earlier, the structure had served as headquarters for the “A. C. Schulz” lithography company. Although this piece is unsigned (this is true of much advertising art), it was undoubtedly created by the hand of Rolf Armstrong and is sold as an attributed painting .
I sent several photographs to the leading authority on Armstrong questioning its authenticity as one of his works, and his reply was, “Who else could have done it!?” This is a rare, perhaps only surviving example of Armstrong’s commercial soda artwork, and it serves as a Depression-era time capsule encapsulating hopes for happier days to come.
Interestingly, the Green River Soda Company was born from the Schoenhofen Brewing Company out of a need for a new line of business created by the signing of Prohibition. The company logo and bottom text portion of illustration was more than likely done by a draftsman in the art department of the company.