Date: 1962
Brand: Chesterfield
Manufacturer: Liggett & Myers Tobacco Company
Campaign: Nurses
Theme: Doctors Smoking
Keywords: Male, Female, Doctor, Nurse, Mild, Actor, Television, Movies, James MacArthur, Stefanie Powers
Quote: This is tobacco too mild to filter. This is pleasure too good to miss. This is Chesterfield King.

Comment: This advertisement for Chesterfields manages to use both the celebrity appeal and the doctor appeal at once. The image shows actors from the 1962 film, The Interns, in which James MacArthur (1937-2010) as Dr. Lew Worship, and Stefanie Powers (1942-present) as Nurse Gloria Mead, fall madly in love. Dr. Lew is shown here with a pack of Chesterfields in his shirt pocket, smoking a cigarette which appears to be plucked from the row laid out in front of the image. Nurse Gloria snuggles up to him, apparently unhindered by the smell of cigarettes on the doctor s breath. Love, movies, and health are all harnessed to target teens and young adults in this clever advertisement. MacArthur died in 2010 with an undisclosed cause of death, while Powers was diagnosed with lung cancer in November of 2008; she reports that she was a smoker on and off for over twenty years, though she started when she was a teenager. She underwent surgery to remove the top lobe of her right lung.


Along with doctors and dentists, nurses presented yet another health professional that had the potential to reassure consumers worried about the ill health effects of smoking. The none-too-subtle message was that if the nurse, with all of her expertise and her dedication to helping patients, chose to smoke a particular brand of cigarettes or even recommended a particular brand, then it must be safe.

As women began taking up the habit of smoking during the early 20th century, so did nurses in large numbers. It is interesting to note, however, that whereas the number of doctors who smoked plummeted drastically in the 1950s and 1960s when conclusive data linked smoking to lung cancer, smoking remained common among nurses. To this day, smoking is more prevalent among nurses than doctors in the United States. The Nurses Health Study shows that 8.4% of nurses smoked in 2003, whereas comparable data from 2005 from the Association of Medical Colleges reveals that only 1% of doctors smoke (1).

1. Nurses Health Study shows nurses smoke more than doctors. Nursing Times. 26 Nov 2008. .

   →  View Larger Image