S.S. Adams Company

Soren Adam Sorensen was born near Aarhus Denmark in 1879 to Hans and Sofia Sorensen, and immigrated to the U.S.A. with his family at age four, and grew up in Perth Amboy, New Jersey where his father operated a saloon. In 1904 Adams found himself employed as a salesman for a dye company. One of the products he sold caused workers to sneeze, and Sam found a way to extract this derivative from the dye and called this new powder Cachoo. He was inundated by requests for this product from his friends and so, he decided to sell his interest in a hotel in York, Pennsylvania, and used the money to launch the Cachoo Sneezing Powder Company in Plainfield, New Jersey.
Within a few years, the sneezing powder craze that swept the country had subsided, and Sam set out to innovating new products. He also changed the name of the company to S.S. Adams Co., to reflect that he was no longer a one product company. The Exploding Cigarette Box , the Snake Nut Can, Itching Powder, the Stink bomb, and the Dribble glass all entered the Adams line in the next decade.
In 1928, Sam invented the prototype of what was to become the Joy Buzzer, a mechanical device placed in the hand, which emitted a loud vibrating buzz, when a button on the buzzer was depressed. This would usually occur when two people shook hands. He took the prototype to Dresden, Germany, where a tool and die maker created the tooling to make small parts for the item, which was now just 3.2cm (1-1/4 inches) in diameter and 1.8cm (3/4 inch) thick. The final item was copyrighted in 1932. The success of the item allowed him to greatly increase his staff and purchase a stately new factory building in Neptune, New Jersey, all during the Great Depression.
Sam and S.S. Adams went on to create many more successful novelties: The Bar Bug in Ice Cube, The Money Maker, The Squirting Nickel, The Jumping Coin, Laughing Tissue as well as an extensive line of magic tricks and puzzles. He claimed to have devised over 600 different items, and patented about 40 of them. He continued to lead S.S. Adams Company until his death in Asbury Park, NJ in 1963 at age 85. Along with super hot candy and soap that turned your hands black Adams novelties were sold throughout the United States with the help of the roadside chain Stuckey's. The SS Adams products were an affordable line of pranks and magical items sold in the magic shop of Disneyland. Children of the 1950's through 1970's were very familiar with the entire line of SS Adams. Today the product line has faded into obscurity.

They Always Come Back:
S.S. Adams products and history are available online.
Disneyland , to this day, proudly features S.S. Adams products.


Bryce Digdug said...

I SWEAR to you I did not do my joybuzzer blog after reading this. Stepping on that joy buzzer in Rondel alley was synchronicity.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting blog. Some of Soren adams inventions are amazing such as the sneezing powder and exploding cigar.

Anonymous said...

You can still find many S.S. Adams products at World Famous Magic http://worldfamousmagic.com