Birthdays - even for magazines - do have a way of arriving without notice.

I know that’s how I felt when SNIPS Publisher Sally Fraser mentioned that SNIPS’ 75th anniversary was coming up.

I must admit I was also a little confused. Astute readers will note that it currently says “Vol. 75” on the magazine’s front cover and the page 5 staff listings. You may also remember a “70th anniversary” banner on our cover a few years ago. Why the discrepancies? Apparently, there was some confusion over dates when BNP Media, formerly Business News Publishing Co., purchased the magazine in 1997. But Nick Carter, SNIPS’ former editor and publisher, assures us that the magazine is, in fact, 75 years old.

The first issue of “The SNIPS,” as the magazine was then called, appeared in April 1932. We recently found that historic issue in our vast - if more than a little dusty - archives.

“The baby makes its bow!” was the headline that welcomed readers to that first 36-page issue. Edward C. Carter, Nick Carter’s father and the magazine’s first editor and publisher, was modest when writing the opening editorial. He said he hoped the publication would “provide for the craft in the 200-mile circle of Chicago a periodical worthy of their respect and support.”

“In this opening message we hesitate to make numerous promises as to what we expect to accomplish, preferring to let SNIPS enjoy popularity, prestige, reader interest and advertising patronage in direct proportion to the service it is able to perform.”

Early success

From the many readers I’ve met who have told me how much they enjoy SNIPS, it seems the magazine was able to meet those goals. It expanded into a national journal and eventually covered the growing markets of metal roofing and indoor air quality.

BNP Media has made a number of changes to SNIPS in the last 10 years. We’ve updated its look, adding more color photography, expanded its editorial coverage and (hopefully) improved the writing by using professional journalists and editors. However, we still have regular contributions from sheet metal contractors and others who may not be professional writers but whose industry knowledge is invaluable.

Now, as we prepare to celebrate our diamond anniversary, we need your help. We’re asking readers to send in their SNIPS memories. I’ve met so many readers who say they remember the magazine on the family coffee table next to Time and Newsweek. Or they still have the old black-and-white photo and story from the time associate editor Bob Murphy visited the shop. The names in the caption might not have all been accurate, but they still love it.

Plenty of readers seem to have a collection of back issues nearly as big - and better organized - than we do.

Please tell me your SNIPS stories. We’re hoping to have a very big, very special 75th anniversary issue in March. I need your help to fill it. I’d love to talk to readers about their memories. Maybe an article really helped your business. Maybe you weren’t sure what do with your life after high school and SNIPS inspired your career choice.

It doesn’t matter. I want to hear about it. Write me at SNIPS magazine, BNP Media, 2401 W. Big Beaver Road, Suite 700, Troy, MI 48084, or e-mail to Include your name and title, as well as your company’s name and location, and a way to contact you.

You can also call me at (248) 244-6416.


Thanks for understanding

I read with great interest the editorial you wrote in the October issue of SNIPS magazine on National Indoor Comfort Week (“Decking the halls with chilled compressors” by James J. Siegel). I thank you for taking a step back and looking into the merits of the event. You succinctly captured the essence of why ACCA pioneered this effort in Congress. Thank you.

Paul T. Stalknecht
President and CEO
Air Conditioning Contractors of America
Arlington, Va.