In the 1930s, This Age of Power and Wonder was a collection of scifi prophecies that could be found in the curiousest of places — cigarette boxes.

Companies of the early 20th century would often include collectible cards with their foodstuffs and tobacco smokes. The New York Public Library has an extensive collection of these cigarette cards available for viewing online, including many from a series by Max Cigarettes called This Age of Power and Wonder. This series from 1935-38 includes predictions of robot servants, spaceships, live television from exotic locations, and ubiquitous airports atop city high rises. Somewhat ironically for a cigarette manufacturer, card number six in this series of 250 predicted great advances in the treatment of cancer.

Wells Forecasts Space-Ships

Television of the Future

Our Future Servants?


How London May Be Lighted

The Amphibian At Work


Atomic Fuel

Aerodrome of the Future


War on Cancer

The Paleo-Future blog was started by Matt Novak in January of 2007. Matt has since become an accidental expert on past visions of the future, and has amassed an enormous library of media related to the study of retro-futurism. Matt can be reached at or followed on Twitter.