The countdown begins!

The countdown begins! While those of us who celebrate wait for Santa, we're passing the time with these ca. 1960 Christmas commercials for Ohio Bell Telephone featuring actor Tim Conway in the role of Santa Claus.

The ads are for Ohio Bell's color princess phone, table phones, and wall phones and were made by Cinecraft Productions, a Cleveland production company founded in 1939 by Ray Culley (1904-1983) and Betty (Buehner) Culley (1914-2016). The company, which still operates today, specialized in commercial productions for business, industry, trade organizations, and, in some cases, government agencies and social service organizations, work that currently allows it to proclaim itself the “country's longest-standing corporate film & video production house.”

This commercial is part of Hagley Library's collection of Cinecraft Productions films (Accession 2019.227). This collection includes motion pictures, still images, scripts and related production documents from the company's founding into the early 1980s with the bulk covering the 1950s to the 1970s. The collection has not been digitized in its entirety but we are currently making frequent additions; click here to view it online now in our Digital Archive.