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William D. Stone General Store Ledger Book and Papers

Creator:
Stone, William Dickinson, 1836-1908  Search this
Donor:
Perdue, Crispin  Search this
Extent:
0.3 Cubic feet (1 box)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Financial records
Ledgers (account books)
Place:
Novelty (Va.)
Virginia -- 19th century
Date:
1865-2003
bulk 1865-1885
Summary:
A general store ledger and business papers from the William D. Stone General Store located in Franklin County, Virginia and a Stone and Parker family history.
Scope and Contents:
The William D. Stone General Store Ledger and Papers consists of a ledger book from a general store in Franklin County, Virginia, containing account information about products purchased, by whom, and the prices paid for a two year period, 1865-1867. The ledger is comparable to other general store ledgers of the time in what it documents and records. There is one folder of assorted business papers containing legal papers, correspondence, promissory notes, and lists. There is also a folder containing a Stone and Parker family history written in 2003. The bulk of the materials covers the time period, 1865-1885.
Arrangement:
The collection is organized in one series.

Series 1: General Store Ledger and Papers, 1865-2003, undated
Biographical / Historical:
William Dickinson Stone (1836-1908) was the son of Edmond and Nancy Stone. He was born in Pittsylvania County, Viriginia. He joined the Confederate Army at Chatham, Pittsylvania County in May 1861. He served in Company F, 6th Virginia Cavalry for the duration of the war. He reportedly returned home from the war to find his land confiscated. He and his brother opened a country store at Novelty, Franklin County, Virginia, which he operated from 1865 until he married Mary Rosabelle Parker in 1867. He purchased a farm in Franklin County. They raised a family and left many descendants. Stone died in October 1908 and was buried in the Stone family cemetery, at Rocky Mount, Franklin County, Virginia.

What is commonly known as the general store grew out of farm store, or plantation store, culture. This was a store where landowners could sell goods and food stuffs produced on their own land while also speculating and selling goods imported from elsewhere. This later grew into the general store being independent of a particular farm and standing on its own as a mercantile establishment solely dependent on its own success as a store for survival. During the 19th century general stores were a common feature of many towns and rural by-ways. The stores carred general merchandise, a variety of goods and staples needed by the surrounding community. These general stores may also have functioned as post offices, trading centers, and local banks. Items often were bartered when ready cash was not available. General stores were not unique to any one region of the United States and while they may have been called by a different name in different parts of the country, they were a staple of the rural agarian lifestyle of the United States well into the early 20th century.
Provenance:
Donated to the Archives Center, National Museum of American History, by Crispin Perdue in 2015.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Topic:
Merchants -- 1860-1870  Search this
General stores -- 1860-1870  Search this
Civil War, 1861-1865  Search this
Commerce -- 1860-1870  Search this
Storekeepers -- 1860-1870  Search this
Genre/Form:
Financial records -- 1860-1870
Ledgers (account books) -- 1860-1870
Citation:
William D. Stone General Store Ledger Book, 1865-1867, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.1358
See more items in:
William D. Stone General Store Ledger Book and Papers
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ep897dc5742-650f-4854-90de-6c14683a2259
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-1358
Online Media:

Wurlitzer Company Records

Creator:
Rudolph Wurlitzer Company  Search this
Names:
All-American Mohawk Company  Search this
Apollo Piano Company  Search this
Beach-Carlisle Violin Company  Search this
Caldwell Piano Company  Search this
Central Discount Company  Search this
Dayton Photo Products Company  Search this
DeKalb Piano Company  Search this
Dekleist Musical Instruments Company  Search this
Deutsch Wurlitzer  Search this
Eagle Radio Company  Search this
Everett Piano Company  Search this
Fox Theatres Corporation  Search this
Lyric Piano Company  Search this
Milner Music Company  Search this
Morsatti, Inc.  Search this
North Tonawanda Barrel Organ Company  Search this
Robert L. Loud Music Company  Search this
Rudolph Wurlitzer Company  Search this
Southern Ohio Radio Corporation  Search this
Western Industries Corporation  Search this
Wunderlich Piano Company  Search this
Wurlbild Corporation  Search this
Wurlitzer Acceptance Corporation  Search this
Wurlitzer Company  Search this
Wurlitzer Company of California  Search this
Wurlitzer Grand Piano Company  Search this
Youngstown Music Company  Search this
Rolfing, R.C.  Search this
Wurlitzer, Farny  Search this
Wurlitzer, Rembert  Search this
Wurlitzer, Rudolph  Search this
Extent:
56 Cubic feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Minute books
Account books
Financial records
Stock records
Reports
Advertisements
Sales records
Audits
Cashbooks
Ledgers (account books)
Annual reports
Photographs
Journals (accounts)
Price lists
Trade catalogs
Publications
Employee records
Marketing records
Commercial catalogs
Place:
DeKalb (Ill.)
North Tonawanda (N.Y.)
Corinth (Miss.)
Cincinnati (Ohio)
Date:
1860-1984
Summary:
The collection documents the history and development of the Wurlitzer Company and consists of company publications, business records, employee files, manufacturing records, sales and marketing records, product information, publicity, advertising, photographs, audiovisual materials, and organ installation drawings.
Scope and Contents:
The collection documents the history and the development of the Wurlitzer Company. Materials include company publications, business records, employee files, manufacturing records, sales and marketing records, product information, publicity, advertising, photographs, audiovisual materials, and organ installation drawings. The material in the collection spans from 1856-1986, although information prior to 1899 is sparse.
Arrangement:
The Collection is arranged into fourteen series.

Series 1: Wurlitzer Company Histories, Company Events, and General Business Materials, circa 1880-1987; undated

Series 2: Publications, 1910-1989; undated

Series 3: Advertising and Promotional Materials, 1911-1978

Series 4: Product Information, 1860-1984; undated

Series 5: Photographs of Wurlitzer Manufacturing Plants, Employees, Stores, and Dealerships, 1869-1970; undated

Series 6: Photographs of Wurlitzer Products and Product Sales Promotions, 1900-1978; undated

Series 7, Photographs Used in Wurlitzer Advertising and Public Relations, 1904-1970; undated

Series 8: Wurlitzer Employee Records and Related Materials, 1909-1961; undated

Series 9: Production and Shipping Records, 1905-1987

Series 10: Shipping and Sales Records for Wurlitzer Dealerships, Wurlitzer Retail Stores, and Rembert Wurlitzer, Incorporated, 1917-1952

Series 11, Records of Stock Certificates, Meeting Minutes, and Related Financial and Legal Documents, 1907-1972

Series 12, Rudolph Wurlitzer Company Financial Records, 1893-1986

Series 13, Maps and Charts, 1931-1976

Series 14, Organ Installation Drawings, 1920-1931; undated
Historical Note:
The Wurlitzer Company began in 1856 when Rudolph Wurlitzer, a Cincinnati bank clerk, sold seven hundred dollars worth of musical instruments he had bought from family and friends in Germany. The busi¬ness was incorporated in Ohio in 1890 under the name the Ru¬dolph Wurlitzer Company." For the first fifty years, Wurlitzer was primarily a retail instrument business operating out of its Cincinnati Store headquarters. Although fire destroyed the com¬pany's headquarters in 1904, a new building was completed in time to celebrate Wurlitzer's fiftieth anniversary in 1906.

In 1908, the Wurlitzer Company bought the DeKleist Musical In¬strument Manufacturing Company in North Tonawanda, New York. The Rudolph Wurlitzer Manufacturing Company continued produc¬tion of automatic musical instruments including player pianos, military bands and pianorchestras. In 1910, the Wurlitzer Company bought the Hope-Jones Organ Company and began to manufacture unit-or¬chestra pipe organs at their North Tonawanda plant. These were pipe organs equipped with bells, gongs, horns and sirens. They became known as Mighty Wurlitzers and provided the musical back¬ground in silent movie houses all over the world and were also built for churches and private homes. In 1919, Wurlitzer bought the Melville-Clark Piano Company of DeKalb, Illinois. Wurlitzer pianos were then manufactured at the DeKalb facilities under a variety of names: the Apollo Piano Company, the DeKalb Piano Company and the Wurlitzer Grand Piano Company. Each name des¬ignated a different quality, price range and style.

With the decline of sales during the 1920s and 1930s, pro¬duction of automatic musical instruments ceased until the manu¬facture of the first jukebox in 1934. In 1930, the Julius Bauer Piano Company was purchased and continued to build pianos in that name until shortly before World War II. For a brief time, radios and refrigerators were made by the Wurlitzer controlled Air-Amer¬ican Mohawk Corporation. It was not a successful venture and ended in the mid-1930s. Many of the Wurlitzer retail stores were, at that time, in bad locations and needed repairs. The solutions to these problems came about with a reorganization of the company in 1935. With the reorganization, many retail stores were sold, piano manufacturing was consolidated in DeKalb and many subsidiaries were dissolved or absorbed completely into the Wurlitzer Company.

During World War II, Wurlitzer halted production of musical in¬struments. The company's defense production efforts were rec¬ognized in 1943 and 1944 when it is North Tonawanda and DeKalb plants received the Army-Navy "E" Award. In 1946, peacetime production resumed and the Wurlitzer Company introduced two new instruments: the electric organ in 1947 and the electric piano in 1954. In 1956, the Wurlitzer Company celebrated its centennial. That same year a new plant at Corinth, Mississippi, was completed. Later, plants were opened in Holly Springs, Mississippi (1961), Logan, Utah (1970) and Hullhorst, West Germany, (1960). The new facilities replaced those at North Tonawanda and DeKalb. The North Tonawanda plant ceased production of jukeboxes in 1974, becoming the company's engineering and research center. In 1973, the DeKalb plant ended production of pianos maintaining only mar¬keting and administrative offices. In 1977, the Wurlitzer Com¬pany's corporate headquarters moved to DeKalb, including the en¬gineering and research center from North Tonawanda.

Wurlitzer's three sons had assumed leadership of the company after his death in 1914. Each son acted as president then, chair of the board, successively. The company hired R.C. Rolfing in 1934 as vice-president and general manager. His re¬organization helped the company through the Depression years. Rolfing succeeded the last of the founder's sons in 1941 as pres¬ident of the company and in 1966 as chair of the board. Farny Wurlitzer, Rudolph's youngest son, died in 1972. A.D. Arsem succeeded Rolfing in 1974 as chair of the board. George B. Howell succeeded W. N. Herleman as president of the company.
Related Materials:
Materials in the Archives Center

Steinway & Sons Records and Family Papers, 1857-1919 (AC0178)

Chickering & Sons Piano Company Collection, 1864-1985 (AC0264)

Sohmer & Company Records, 1872-1989 (AC0349)

William J. Lenz Piano Tuning Collection, circa 1903-1955 (AC0511)

Janssen Piano Company Records, 1901-1929 (AC0512)

John R. Anderson Piano Trade Literature and Ephemera Collection, circa 1850-1990 (AC1257)

Warshaw Collection of Business America's Piano and Organ related materials (AC0060)
Provenance:
Collection donated by Northern Illinois University, and Regional History Center, 1994, November 11.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Topic:
Violin -- Manufacture  Search this
Radio -- Receivers and reception  Search this
Coin-operated machines  Search this
Accordion  Search this
Jukeboxes -- Manufacture  Search this
Harp -- Manufacture  Search this
Piano -- History  Search this
Player organ  Search this
Accordion -- Manufacture  Search this
Piano makers  Search this
Organ -- Manufacture  Search this
Organ -- History  Search this
Wurlitzer organ  Search this
Musical instrument makers  Search this
Mechanical organs  Search this
Mechanical musical instruments  Search this
Musical instruments  Search this
Genre/Form:
Minute books
Account books
Financial records
Stock records
Reports
Advertisements
Sales records
Audits
Cashbooks
Ledgers (account books)
Annual reports
Photographs -- 19th century
Journals (accounts)
Price lists
Trade catalogs
Publications
Employee records
Marketing records
Commercial catalogs
Citation:
Wurlitzer Company Records, 1860-1984, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0469
See more items in:
Wurlitzer Company Records
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ep8b6b1ed59-da9e-468e-ae2e-8bcd065f8cb2
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0469
Online Media:

N W Ayer Advertising Agency Records

Creator:
Ayer (N W) Incorporated.  Search this
Names:
American Telephone and Telegraph Company -- Advertisements  Search this
Cunningham & Walsh.  Search this
Hixson & Jorgenson  Search this
United Air Lines, Inc. -- Advertisements  Search this
Ayer, Francis Wayland  Search this
De Kooning, Willem, 1904-1997  Search this
O'Keeffe, Georgia, 1887-1986  Search this
Extent:
270 Cubic feet (1463 boxes, 33 map-folders, 7 films)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Business records
Interviews
Oral history
Print advertising
Proof sheets
Proofs (printed matter)
Scrapbooks
Trade literature
Tear sheets
Advertisements
Date:
1817-1851
1869-2006
Summary:
Collection consists of records documenting one of the oldest advertising agencies created in Philadelphia. The company then moves to New York and expanses to international markets. During its history NW Ayer & Sons acquires a number of other advertising agencies and is eventually purchased. The largest portion of the collection is print advertisements but also includes radio and television. NW Ayer is known for some of the slogans created for major American companies.
Scope and Contents:
The collection consists primarily of proof sheets of advertisements created by NW Ayer & Son, Incorporated for their clients. These materials are in series one through thirteen and consist primarily of print advertisements. There are also billboards, radio and television commercials. The advertisements range from consumer to corporate and industrial products. The majority of the advertisements were created for Ayer's New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and international offices. Printed advertisements created by Cunningham & Walsh, Hixson & Jorgensen and Newell-Emmett are also included among these materials. Researchers who are interested in records created by Ayer in the course of operating an advertising agency will find these materials in Series fourteen-nineteen.

Series fourteen consists of advertisements created by NW Ayer & Son to promote their services to potential clients.

Series fifteen are scrapbooks of some of the earliest advertisements created by the company. Series sixteen are publications. Some of the publications were created by Ayer while others were about Ayer or the advertising industry in general. Provides good background materials and puts the company in perspective. Series eighteen are the legal records. Materials relating to employees including photographs, oral histories etc. are found in series nineteen.

Series twenty is one of the smallest amounts of materials and includes information relating to the history of NW Ayer & Son.

The container lists for series one-thirteen are part of a database and are searchable. The list has been printed for the convenience of the researcher and is included in this finding aid. Series fourteen-twenty container lists are also a part of the finding aid but are not in a searchable format.

Series 1, Scrapbooks of Client Advertisements, circa 1870-1920, is arranged into three boxes by chronological date. There are two bound scrapbooks and one box of folders containing loose scrapbook pages. NW Ayer & Son compiled an assortment of their earliest ads and placed them into scrapbooks. Besides the earliest advertisements, the scrapbooks contain requests to run advertisements, reading notices and listings of papers Ayer advertised in. The early advertisements themselves range from medical remedies to jewelry to machines to clothing to education and more. Most of the advertisements in the bound scrapbooks are dated.

Series 2, Proofsheets, circa 1870-1930, NW Ayer was fond of creating scrapbooks containing proofsheets. The series contains proofsheets created between 1892 and 1930, organized into 526 boxes. For convenience of storage, access and arrangement, the scrapbooks were disassembled and the pages placed in original order in flat archival storage boxes. The proofsheets are arranged by book number rather than client name. Usually the boxes contain a listing of the clients and sometimes the dates of the advertisements to be found within the box.

Series 3, Proofsheets, circa 1920-1975, is organized into 532 oversize boxes, and contain proofsheets and tearsheets created between 1920 and 1972. Within this series, materials are arranged alphabetically by company name (occasionally subdivided by brand or product), and thereunder chronologically by date of production. Many major, national advertisers are represented, including American Telephone & Telegraph, Armour Company, Canada Dry, Cannon Mills, Carrier Corporation, Domino Sugar, Caterpillar tractor company, Ford Motor Company, General Electric, Goodyear, Hills Bros. Coffee, Ladies Home Journal, National Dairy, Plymouth (Chrysler Corporation), Steinway, TV Guide, United Airlines and the United States Army. Also contained in this series are three scrapbooks of client advertisements including Canada Dry, Ford Motor, and Victor Talking Machine.

Series 4, 2001 Addendum, circa 1976-2001, is organized into ninety three oversized boxes,one folder and contains proofsheets for select Ayer clients, created between 1975 and 2001. Within this series, materials are arranged alphabetically by client name and there under chronologically by date of production. Major national advertisers represented include American Telephone & Telegraph, Avon, the United States Army, DeBeers Consolidated Diamond Mines, Dupont, TV Guide, Sealtest, Kraft Foods, Gillette, General Motors, Cannon Mills.

Series 5, Billboards, circa 1952-1956, consists of mounted and un-mounted original art/mock-ups. Twenty-two pieces of original art created as mock-ups for Texaco billboards.

Series 6, Film and Video Commercials, 1967-1970,

Series 7, Radio and Television Materials, 1933-1993, undated, is arranged into eight boxes and includes radio scripts, television scripts, and story boards for commercials.

Subseries 7.1, Scripts and storyboards for Radio and Television Commercials, dates Scripts for radio and television commercials includes title, date, length of commercial, advertising agency, client information

NW Ayer's radio and television materials mainly focus on the American Telegraph and Telephone account. Some of Ayer's materials relate to Bell Telephone Hours.

Storyboards are used in television and film to assist the director in working with crew to tell the story. To show the viewer through the use of figures, visual effects and camera angles. When directors first start thinking about their storyboard they create a story in their mind. They think of all the camera angles, visual effects and how the figures will interact in their mind. They try to create an extraordinary story in their head to attract the viewer (YOU) In order for the storyboard to be entirely effective it can't be a passive document. When done properly, a storyboard serves as a central design, meeting the needs of many team members including graphics artists, video personnel and programmers.

Another function of a storyboard is to help the team communicate during the training development process. This communication is very important in working with a large team as in the movie King, produced in 1996. Figures help the director explain to the crew how they are going to record the film and how to present it to the audience. Sometimes the director wants special effects to be added to the film, but his budget might not be that big so the director will have to change the story to fit their budget.

The Visual Effects are an important part in the storyboards it adds a special touch of creativity to your film. Camera angles are an important expects in your film because the camera angles determine where the viewing audience will look. If you want your audience to look at a certain object you must turn their attention to it by focusing on that object and maybe you might try blocking something out. Then you will have your audience's attention and you may do whatever else you have to, it could be scaring them are just surprising them or whatever you do.

Also included is talent information and log sheets relating to the storage of the commercials.

Bell Telephone Hour Program, 1942-[19??], The Bell Telephone Hour, also known as The Telephone Hour, was a five minute musical program which began April 29, 1940 on National Broadcasting Company Radio and was heard on NBC until June 30, 1958. Sponsored by Bell Telephone showcased the best in classical and Broadway music, reaching eight to nine million listeners each week. It continued on television from 1959 to 1968.

Earlier shows featured James Melton and Francia White as soloists. Producer Wallace Magill restructured the format on April 27, 1942 into the "Great Artists Series" of concert and opera performers, beginning with Jascha Heifetz. Records indicate that the list of talents on the program included Marian Anderson, Helen Traubel, Oscar Levant, Lily Pons, Nelson Eddy, Bing Crosby, Margaret Daum, Benny Goodman, José Iturbi, Gladys Swarthout and .The series returned to radio in 1968-1969 as Bell Telephone Hour Encores, also known as Encores from the Bell Telephone Hour, featuring highlights and interviews from the original series.

National Broadcasting television specials sponsored by the Bell System, 1957-1987includes information relating to Science series, Bell system Theshold Series, Bell telephone hour and commercial and public sponsored programs

Series 8, Chicago Office Print Advertisements, 1954-1989, is arranged alphabetically by the name of the client in ninety boxes and six oversize folders. Clients include Illinois Bell Telephone (1955-1989), Microswitch (1969-1989), Teletype (1975-1984), John Deere (1974-1989) and Caterpillar (1966-1972) are particularly well represented. Other clients of interest include Dr. Scholl's shoes (circa 1968-1972), the Girl Scouts (1976-1980), Sunbeam Personal Products Company (1973-1981), Bell and Howell (1974-1983) and Alberto Culver shampoos (1967-1971), Honeywell, Incorporated, Blue Cross and Blue Shield Associations, Kraft, Incorporated, Sears, Roebuck and Company, and YMCA.

Series 9, Los Angeles Office Materials, 1950s-1987, include printed advertisements created by this office and information relating to the employees.

Subseries 9.1, Print Advertisements, 1977-1987, printed advertisements arranged in one box alphabetically by client. There is a sparse sampling of clients from this particular Ayer branch office. The majority of the advertisements contained within this series are from Pizza Hut (1986-1987). Also included are Computer Automation (1977-1978), State of the Art, Incorporated (1982) and Toshiba (1986).

Subseries 9.2, Personnel Files, 1950s-1970s, includes cards of employees who worked in the Los Angeles office. Information on the cards includes name, address, telephone number, birthday, date hired, departure date and why (retired, terminated, resigned, etc) and position. Not all cards have all information. There is also a photograph of the employees on the cards.

Series 10, Foreign Print Advertisements, 1977-1991, undated, NW Ayer maintained partnerships with international companies such as Sloanas Ayer in Argentina, Connaghan & May Paton Ayer in Australia, Moussault Ayer in Belgium, NW Ayer, LTD. in Canada, GMC Ayer in France, Co-Partner Ayer in Germany, Wong Lam Wang in Hong Kong, MacHarman Ayer in New Zealand, Grupo de Diseno Ayer in Spain, Nedeby Ayer in Sweden, and Ayer Barker in United Kingdom. This group of material is a small sampling of advertisements created from these International offices. It is arranged alphabetically by client. There are quite a few automobile advertisements (i.e. Audi, Fiat, General Motors, Mercedes-Benz, and Volkswagen). In addition there are numerous advertisements for various personal items from MacLean's toothpaste to Quick athletic shoes to Labello lip balm, etc. Most of the advertisements have the creator's name printed on the advertisements.

Series 11, Cunningham & Walsh, Incorporated Materials, 1915-1987, undated contains 98 boxes 11 folders materials from the New York advertising agency acquired by NW Ayer in the 1960s. The company began with Newel-Emmett, an agency of nine men which broke up in 1949. Two of the men Fred Walsh and Jack Cunningham formed this agency in bearing their names in 1950. The agency created "let your fingers for the walking campaign for American Telephone & Telegraph, Mother Nature for Chiffon, and Mrs. Olson for Folgers's coffee and let the good times roll for Kawasaki motorcycle. In 1986, NW Ayer Incorporated purchased Cunningham & Walsh Incorporated.

Subseries 11.1, Print Advertisements, 1915-1987, are contained in ninety eight boxes of primarily print advertisements arranged alphabetically by client name. Clients that are particularly well represented are Graybar (electrical implements, circa1926-1937), Johns-Manulle (circa1915-1971), Smith and Corono typewriters (circa 1934-1960), Sunshine Biscuit Company (circa 1925-1961), Texaco Company (circa 1936-1961), Western Electric (circa 1920- 1971) and Yellow Pages (circa 1936-1971). Cunningham and Walsh also represented several travel and tourism industry clients, including Cook Travel Services (circa 1951-1962), Italian Line (circa 1953-1961), Narragansett and Croft (circa 1956-1960) and Northwest Airlines (circa 1946-1955). There are photographs of Texaco advertisements dating from 1913-1962. There is also a scrapbook of advertisements from the Western Electric Company dating from 1920-1922.

Subseries 11.2, Radio and Television Advertisements, 1963-1967, consist of materials created for Western Electric. Materials are arranged in chronological order.

Subseries 11.3, Company Related Materials, 1962-1986, undated include client lists, information relating to NW Ayer purchase and annual report 1962.

Series 12, Hixson & Jorgensen Materials, 1953-1971, a Los Angeles advertising company, merged with Ayer in 1969. This series is housed in one box. Within the box are four scrapbooks and folders with a hodgepodge of materials relating to advertising. Of most interest are the scrapbooks. Two scrapbooks deal with Hixson and Jorgensen's self promotion ad campaign "the right appeal gets action" (1953-1957). The other two scrapbooks contain news clippings about the company and its activities (1959-1971).

Series 13, Newell-Emmet, 1942-1957, founded in 1919 and governed in the 1940s by a partnership of nine men. The partnership broke up in 1949 when the men went their separate ways. The materials consist of print advertisements for one of client, Permutit Company, a water conditioning company. The materials are arranged in one box in chronological order.

Series 14, House Print Advertisements, 1870-1991, 16 boxes consists of advertisements or self-promotion advertisements to campaign for new clients. The series is arranged chronologically by date into fifteen boxes. Within the series are two scrapbooks containing self promotion ads from 1888-1919 and 1892-1895. Numerous house ads relate to Ayer's "Human Contact" campaign. In addition to the self promotion ads, Ayer ran advertisements expounding about particular concepts or themes for example, one month the concept would "understand" while another month would be "teamwork" and yet another would be on "imagination". Some of the self promotion ads target specific groups like Philadelphia businessmen. Other advertisements incorporate the fine arts.

Series 15, Scrapbooks, 1872-1959, relates to company events, records and news clippings about Ayer's history. The six boxes are arranged by chronological date. Two of the boxes focus solely on the death of founder F.W. Ayer (1923). Another box houses a scrapbook that showcases Ayer's annual Typography Exhibition (1931-1959). One box contains a scrapbook that specifically deals with correspondences relating to Ayer's advertising. Yet another box's contents are folders of loose pages from scrapbooks that have newspaper clippings, order forms, correspondences and other company records. In one box, a bound scrapbook houses a variety of materials relating to Ayer and advertising (i.e. newspaper clippings, competitor's advertisements, NW Ayer's advertisements, correspondences for advertisements, clippings regarding the "theory of advertising."

Series 16, Publications, 1849-2006, are housed in thirty four boxes and are arranged into three main categories.

Subseries 16.1, House Publications, 1876-1994, covers diverse topics; some proscriptive works about the Ayer method in advertising, some commemorating people, anniversaries or events in the life of the agency. Materials consist of scattered issues of the employee newsletter The Next Step 1920-1921. The materials are arranged in chronological order by date of publication. Ayer in the News, The Show Windows of an Advertising Agency, 1915, book form of advertisements published on the cover of Printer's Ink, highlighting Ayer's relations with advertisers. The Story of the States, 1916, Reprint in book form of a series of articles published in Printer's Ink for the purpose of adding some pertinent fact, progressive thought and prophetic vision to the Nationalism of Advertising highlights major businesses, manufacturer, natural resources and other qualities or attractions of each state. The Book of the Golden Celebration, 1919, includes welcome address and closing remarks by founder F. Wayland Ayer, The Next Step, 1920 employee newsletter with photographs, employee profiles, in-house jokes, etc., Advertising Advertising: A Series of Fifty-two Advertisements scheduled one time a week. Twenty-seven, thirty and forty inches, a day of the week optional with publisher, 1924

Subseries 16.2, Publications about NW Ayer, 1949-2006, includes a book first published in 1939. Includes articles, documenting events and is arranged chronologically by date of publication.

Subseries 16.3, General Publications about Advertising, 1922-1974, are arranged chronologically by date of publication and relate primarily to the history of advertising.

Subseries 16.4, Publications about Other Subjects, 1948-1964, include four books about the tobacco industry primarily the history of the American Tobacco Company and Lorillard Company from the Cunningham and Walsh library.

Series 17, Business Records, circa 1885-1990s

Subseries 17.1, Contracts, 1885-1908, undated, are arranged alphabetically and span from 1885-1908. The majority of the contracts are with newspaper and magazine publishers from around the country.

Subseries 17.2, General client information, 1911-1999, undated, including active and cancelled lists with dates, client gains, historical client list, (should move this to series 20) Ayer Plan User Guide Strategic Planning for Human Contact, undated

Subseries 17.3, Individual Client Account Information, 1950s-1990s, undated, contain information used by Ayer to create advertisements for some of its clients. American Telephone &Telegraph Corporate Case History, American Telephone &Telegraph Corporate advertisement memo, commissioned artists for DeBeers advertisements, DeBeers information relating to the creative process and photography credits, a case history for DeBeers Consolidated Mines, Ltd., The Diamond Engagement Ring, Managing Communication at all levels, DuPont publications, JC Penny Marketing Communication Plan Recommendation, Leaf, Incorporated, Saturn presentation, and USAREC oral presentation.

Subseries 17.4, Potential Clients, 1993, includes grouping has a questionnaire sent to Ayer by a potential client. Questionnaire response for Prudential Securities, 1993 Prudential Securities advertising account review, 1993.

Subseries 17.5, Financial Records, 1929-1938, includes balance sheet, 1929 May 1 Balance sheet and adjustments Consolidated statement of assets and liabilities, Expenses 191936-37 Business review and expenses, 1937 and 1938 Business review and expenses comparative statement, 1937 and 1938.

Series 18, Legal Records, circa 1911-1982, Ayer's legal records are arranged by twelve subject groupings within four boxes. The twelve groupings are advertising service agreements (circa 1918-1982), bylaws, copyright claims, correspondences, international correspondences, dissolution of trusts, stock information, agreements between partners, incorporation materials, reduction of capital, property information and miscellaneous materials. The bulk of the materials are the advertising service agreements. These agreements are between Ayer and their clients and state the services Ayer will offer and at what cost. The bylaws are Ayer's company bylaws from 1969 and 1972. The copyright claims are certificates stating Ayer's ownership over certain published materials (i.e. "Policy", Media Equalizer Model, and Don Newman's Washington Square Experiment). The correspondences relate to either the voting trust and receipts for agreement or the New York Corporation. The international correspondences are from either Ayer's Canadian office or London office. The dissolutions of trusts contains materials about the dividend trust of Wilfred F. Fry, the investment trust of Winfred W. Fry, the voting trust, and the New York corporation. The stock information has stock certificates and capital stock information. The agreements between partners (1911-1916) specify the terms between F.W. Ayer and his partners. The incorporation materials (circa 1929-1977) deal with Ayer advertising agency becoming incorporated in the state of Delaware. The reduction of capital grouping is a notification that shares of stock have been retired. The property information grouping contains property deeds and insurance policy (circa 1921-1939), a property appraisal (1934), and a bill of sale (1948). The miscellaneous grouping contains a house memo regarding a set of board meeting minutes and a registry of foreign companies in Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (1929-1954).

Subseries 18.1, Advertising Service Agreements, 1918-1982

Subseries 18.2, Bylaw Materials, 1969-1972

Subseries 18.3, Copyright Claims, 1962-1969

Subseries 18.4, Correspondence, 1928-1933

Subseries 18.5, International Office Correspondence, 1947-1948

Subseries 18.6, Dissolution of Trusts, 1934-1937

Subseries 18.7, Stock Information, 1934-1974

Subseries 18.8, Agreements between Partners, 1911-1916

Subseries 18.9, Incorporation Materials, 1929-1977

Subseries 18.10, Certificates of Reduction of Capital, 1937; 1975

Subseries 18.11, Property Information, 1921-1948

Subseries 18.12, Miscellaneous Materials, 1929-1977

Series 19, Personnel Records, circa 1889-2001, are arranged into eight groupings within eight boxes. The groupings are employee card files, photographs, Ayer alumni, biographies, speeches, recollections, oral histories, and miscellaneous. Typed manuscript of book A Copy Writer Speaks by George Cecil, NW Ayer, Incorporated copy head 1920s-1950s

Subseries 19.1, Employee card files, circa 1892-1915; 1929-1963, consists of index cards with the name, age, job title, date and wage increases, date of hire/fire, as well as remarks about the employee's service and/or reasons for seeking or leaving the job. Materials are arranged alphabetically by the last name of the employee within three boxes.

Subseries 19.2, Photographs, circa 1924-1984, undated, are housed in two boxes. The photographs grouped together by subjects i.e. personnel, company events, Ayer buildings, and miscellaneous. This grouping primarily consists of personnel photographs. Includes a glass plate negative dated 1924 of NW Ayer.

Subseries 19.3, Ayer Alumni, circa 1989-98, include employees who have left Ayer. There is a listing of Ayer "graduates" and their current job. Emeritus, Ayer's alumni newsletter 1989-1996, makes up the majority of materials in this grouping. The newsletter keeps the alumni up to date with the happenings of Ayer and what has become of former Ayer employees. Emeritus is a quarterly newsletter devoted to the activities, thoughts and feelings of Ayer alumni a body of people who consists of retirees and former employees.

Subseries 19.4, Biographical Information, circa 1889-1994, undated, prominent members of Ayer's operations had biographical sketches completed of them. This was true for the bio sketches of Robert Ervin, Louis T. Hagopian, and George A. Rink. There is a substantial file on Dorothy Dignam ("Mis Dig"), a leading woman in the advertising world from the 1930s to the 1950s. Also of interest is a video ("The Siano Man") compiled by Ayer employees to commemorate Jerry Siano's retirement from Ayer in 1994. The series is arranged alphabetically by last name.

Subseries 19.5, Speeches, circa 1919-1931; 1975, contains speeches made by Wilfred W. Fry and Neal W. O'Connor. Wilfred W. Fry had various speaking engagements connected with Ayer. Contained in this group is a sampling of his speeches from 1919 to 1931. Neal O'Connor's speech "Advertising: Who Says It's a Young People's Business" was given at the Central Region Convention for the American Association of Advertising Agencies in Chicago on November 6, 1975. The speeches are arranged alphabetically by the speaker's last name.

Subseries 19.6, Recollections, 1954-1984, undated, are arranged alphabetically by last name. These are recollections from Ayer employees about the company and its advertisements. Some recollections are specifically about certain types of advertisements, like farm equipment while others reflect on F. W. Ayer and the company.

Subseries 19.7, Oral History Interview Transcripts, 1983-1985; 1989-1991, include interviews with key NW Ayer personnel, conducted by Ayer alumnae Howard Davis, Brad Lynch and Don Sholl (Vice President creative) for the Oral History Program. The materials are arranged alphabetically by the last name of the interviewee.

Subseries 19.8, Oral History Interview Audio Tapes, 1985-1990, include interviews on audiotape the materials are arranged alphabetically by the last name of the interviewee.

Subseries 19.9, Internal Communications, 1993-1999, includes information sent to employees relating to retirements, management changes, awards won by the company, promotions, potential new accounts, free items, grand opening of Ayer Café, donation events, sponsorship programs, holiday schedules, discounts for employees from clients, Ayer joins MacManus Group.

Subseries 19.10, General Materials, 1940; 1970, includes agency directory entry including a list of the employees, 1970s, annual banquet program for the Curfew Club May 22, 1940 a group formed by the Philadelphia employee in 1938. It sponsored numerous sports, social and educational activities. Groups were formed in public speaking, music appreciation and a series of talks on Monday evenings title the modern woman. The front page was a series of talks for general interest. A list of officers, 1991, Twenty five year club membership, 1973 December 1, List of NW Ayer graduates, 1970, List of Officers, 1991 May 31, Obituary for Leo Lionni, 1999 October 17, List of photographers of advertisements, 2001

Series 20, Background and History Information, 1817-1999, undated includes a chronology, 1817-1990, quick reference timeline, 1848-1923, loose pages from a scrapbook containing examples of correspondence, envelopes, advertisements dating from 1875-1878; slogans coined by NW Ayer & Sons, Incorporated, 1899-1990, history of management, 1909-1923, articles and photographs about the building and art galleries, 1926-1976, publications about the Philadelphia building, 1929, pamphlet relating to memories of NW Ayer & Sons, Incorporated, 1930s-1950s, television history, 1940-1948, Article about the history of the company, 1950 January, pocket guide, 1982, AdWeek reports about standings for advertising agencies, information relating to Human Contact which is NW Ayer's Information relating to Human Contact, undated which is their philosophy on advertising.

Series 21, Materials Created by other Advertising Agencies, 1945-1978, undated, consists of print advertisements collected by Ayer from other major advertising companies. The companies include Doyle Dane Bernback, Incorporated, Leo Burnett Company, Grey Advertising Agency, D'Arcy Ad Agency, Scali, McCabe, Sloves, Incorporated and Erwin Wasey Company. The materials are arranged in alphabetical order by client and include products from Ralston Purina and Van Camp (Chicken of the Sea), Kellogg, American Export Lines and No Nonsense Fashions.

Series 22, 2010 Addendum of Print Advertisements, circa 1879s-1999, undated, includes material given to the Archives Center in 2010. It is organized into seventy one oversized boxes and contains proofsheets of print advertisements for select Ayer clients. These are arranged alphabetically by client name and include substantial quantities of materials from American Telephone &Telegraph (1945-1996), Bahamas Ministry of Tourism (1967-1987), Carrier (1971-1981), Citibank (1973-1991), DeBeers (1940s-1960s and1990s), Electric Companies Advertising Program [ECAP] (1942-1970s), General Motors (1989-1998), J.C. Penney (1983-1986), Newsweek (1966-1975), and Proctor and Gamble (1980s-1890s). There are also numerous other clients represented by smaller quantities of materials.

Subseries 22.1, Print Advertisements, 1930-1990, undated

Subseries 22.2, Print Advertisements on Glass Plate Negatives, 1879-1881, undated, include Cannon towels, Cheny Brothers silks, Cornish & Company organs and pianos, Enterprise Manufacturing Company, 1879 sad iron, an ad from Harper's Weekly 1881 for ladies clothing, Ostermoor & Company mattresses, Pear's soap, Porter's cough balsam, Steinway pianos.

Series 23, Microfilm of Print Advertisements, circa 1908-1985, consists of three boxes of printed advertisements for the American Telephone and Telegraph Company. Some of the same advertisements might also be found in series two, three and four.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into twenty-three series.

Series 1: Scrapbooks of Client Print Advertisements, circa 1870-1920

Series 2: Proofsheets, circa 1870-1930

Series 3: Proofsheets, circa 1920-1975

Series 4: 2001 Addendum, circa 1976-2001

Series 5: Billboards, circa 1952-1956

Series 6: Audiovisual Materials

Series 7: Radio and Television Materials, 1933-1993, undated

Series 8: Chicago Office Print Advertisements, 1954-1989

Series 9: Los Angeles Office Materials, 1950s-1987

Subseries 9.1: Printed Advertisements, 1977-1987

Subseries 9.2: Personnel Files, 1950s-1970s

Series 10: Foreign Print Advertisements, 1977-1991, undated

Series 11: Cunningham & Walsh Incorporated Materials, 1915-1987, undated

Subseries 11.1: Printed Advertisements, 1915-1987

Subseries 11.2: Radio and Television Advertisements, 1963-1967

Subseries 11.3: Company Related Materials, 1962-1986, undated

Series 12: Hixson & Jorgensen Materials, 1953-1971, undated

Series 13: Newell-Emmet, 1942-1957

Series 14: House Print Advertisements, 1870-1991

Series 15: Scrapbooks, 1872-1959

Series 16: Publications, 1849-2006

Subseries 16.1: House Publications, 1876-1994

Subseries 16.2: Publications about NW Ayer, 1949-1995

Subseries 16.3: General Publications about Advertising, 1922-2006

Subseries 16.4: Publications about other Subjects, 1948-1964

Series 17, Business Records, circa 1885-1990s

Subseries 17.1: Contracts, 1885-1908, undated

Subseries 17.2: General Client Information, 1911-1999, undated

Subseries 17.3: Individual Client Account Information, 1950s-1990s, undated

Subseries 17.4: Potential Clients, 1993

Subseries 17.5: Financial Records, 1929-1938

Series 18: Legal Records, circa 1911-1984

Subseries 18.1: Advertising Service Agreements, 1918-1982

Subseries 18.2: Bylaw Materials, 1969-1972

Subseries 18.3, Copyright Claims, 1962-1969

Subseries 18.4: Correspondence, 1928-1933

Subseries 18.5: International Office Correspondence, 1947-1948

Subseries 18.6: Dissolution of Trusts, 1934-1937

Subseries 18.7: Stock Information, 1934-1974

Subseries 18.8: Agreements between Partners, 1911-1916

Subseries 18.9: Incorporation Materials, 1929-1977

Subseries 18.10: Certificates of Reduction of Capital, 1937; 1975

Subseries 18.11: Property Information

Subseries 18.12: Miscellaneous Materials, 1929-1977

Series 19: Employee Materials, circa 1889-2001

Subseries 19.1: Employee Card files, circa 1892-1915; 1929-1963

Subseries 19.2: Photographs, circa 1924-1984, undated

Subseries 19.3: Alumni Publications, circa 1989-1998

Subseries 19.4: Biographical Information, circa 1889-1994

Subseries 19.5: Speeches, circa 1919-1931; 1975

Subseries 19.6: Recollections, 1954-1984, undated

Subseries 19.7: Oral History Interview Transcripts, 1983-1985; 1989-1991

Subseries 19.8: Oral History Audiotapes, 1985-1990

Subseries 19.9: Internal Communications, 1993-1999

Subseries 19.1: General Materials, 1940-2001

Series 20: History and Background Information about the Company, 1817-1999, undated

Series 21: Materials Created by other Advertising Agencies, 1945-1978, undated

Series 22: 2010 Addendum of Print Advertisements, circa 1879s-1990s, undated

Subseries 22.1: Print Advertisements, 1930-1990, undated

Subseries 22.2: Print Advertisements on Glass Plate Negatives, 1879-1881, undated

Series 23: Microfilm of Print Advertisements, circa 1908-1985
Biographical / Historical:
Founded in Philadelphia in 1869, NW Ayer & Son is one of the oldest and largest advertising agencies in America. For most of its history, it was the undisputed leader and innovator in the field of advertising. In 1876, NW Ayer & Son pioneered the "open contract", a revolutionary change in the method of billing for advertising which became the industry standard for the next hundred years. NW Ayer pioneered the use of fine art in advertising and established the industry's first art department. It was the first agency to use a full-time copywriter and the first to institute a copy department. The agency relocated to New York City in 1974. During its long history, the agency's clients included many "blue-chip" clients, including American Telephone & Telegraph, DeBeers Consolidated Diamond Mines, Ford Motor Company, Nabisco, R. J. Reynolds and United Airlines. However, in later years, the Ayer's inherent conservatism left the agency vulnerable to the creative revolution of the 1960s and 1970s, the advertising industry restructuring of the 1980s and the economic recession of the early 1990s. The agency was bought out by a Korean investor in 1993. In 1996, NW Ayer merged with another struggling top twenty United States advertising agency, Darcy, Masius, Benton & Bowles, under the umbrella of the McManus Group. Ayer continues to operate as a separate, full-service agency.

Through a series of buyouts and mergers, Ayer traces its lineage to the first advertising agency founded in the United States, a Philadelphia agency begun by Volney Palmer in 1841. Palmer began his career in advertising as a newspaper agent, acting as middleman between newspaper publishers and advertisers across the country. By 1849, Palmer had founded his own newspaper, V. B. Palmer's Register and Spirit of the Press, and had developed a complete system of advertising which included securing advertising space and placing ads in scores of commercial, political, religious, scientific and agricultural journals across the country. Palmer went one step further than the "space jobbers" of the day when he began offering "advertisements carefully drawn for those who have not the time to prepare an original copy." Always an enthusiastic promoter of advertising as an incentive to trade and American economic growth, Palmer promised advertisers that "every dollar paid for advertising in country newspapers will pay back twenty-fold" and encouraged skeptical consumers that "he who wishes to buy cheap should buy of those who advertise." When Palmer died in 1863, the agency was bought by his bookkeeper, John Joy, who joined with another Philadelphia advertising agency to form Joy, Coe & Sharpe. That agency was bought out again in 1868 and renamed Coe, Wetherill & Company. In 1877, Coe, Wetherill and Company was bought out by the newly formed NW Ayer & Son.

Francis Wayland Ayer was an ambitious young schoolteacher with an entrepreneurial streak. Having worked for a year soliciting advertisements on a commission basis for the publisher of the National Baptist weekly, Francis Ayer saw the potential to turn a profit as an advertising agent. In 1869, Ayer persuaded his father, Nathan Wheeler Ayer, to join him in business, and with an initial investment of only $250.00, NW Ayer & Son was born. Notwithstanding a smallpox epidemic in Philadelphia in 1871 and the general economic depression of the early 1870s, the agency flourished. The senior Ayer died in 1873, leaving his interest in the agency to his wife, but Francis W. Ayer bought her out, consolidating his interest in the company's management. In 1877, with Coe, Wetherill & Company (the successor to Palmer's 1841 agency) on the verge of bankruptcy and heavily indebted to Ayer for advertising it had placed in Ayer publications, Ayer assumed ownership of that agency. Thus did NW Ayer lay claim to being the oldest advertising agency in the country.

Both Nathan Wheeler and Francis Wayland Ayer began their careers as schoolteachers, and one of their legacies was a commitment to the cause of education: correspondence schools and institutions of higher learning were historically well-represented among Ayer clients. Just after World War I, the agency was heralded as "co-founder of more schools than any citizen of this country" for its conspicuous efforts to advertise private schools. Well into the 1960s, an "Education Department" at Ayer prepared advertisements for over three hundred private schools, camps and colleges, representing almost half the regional and national advertising done for such institutions. In fact, to its clients Ayer presented advertising itself as being akin to a system of education. In 1886, Ayer began promoting the virtues of the Ayer way advertising with the slogan, "Keeping Everlastingly at It Brings Success."

The agency's goals were simple: "to make advertising pay the advertiser, to spend the advertiser's money as though it were our own, to develop, magnify and dignify advertising as a business." Initially, Ayer's fortunes were tied to newspapers, and the agency began to make a name for itself as compiler and publisher of a widely used American Newspaper Annual. During the first years, Ayer's singular goal was "to get business, place it [in newspapers] and get money for it"; after several years as an independent space broker, however, Francis Ayer resolved "not to be an order taker any longer." This decision led NW Ayer and Son to a change in its mode of conducting business which would revolutionize the advertising industry: in 1876, Ayer pioneered the "open contract" with Diggee & Conard, Philadelphia raised growers and agricultural suppliers. Prior to the open contract, NW Ayer & Sons and most agencies operated as "space-jobbers," independent wholesalers of advertising space, in which the opportunities for graft and corrupt practices were virtually unlimited. In contrast, the open contract, wherein the advertiser paid a fixed commission based on the volume of advertising placed, aligned the advertising agent firmly on the side of the advertiser and gave advertisers access to the actual rates charged by newspapers and religious journals. The open contract with a fixed commission has been hailed by advertising pioneer Albert Lasker as one of the "three great landmarks in advertising history." (The other two were Lasker's own development of "reason-why" advertising copy and J. Walter Thompson's pioneering of sex appeal in an advertisement for Woodbury's soap.) Although the transition to the open contract did not happen overnight, by 1884, nearly three-quarters of Ayer's advertising billings were on an open contract basis. Since Ayer was, by the 1890s, the largest agency in America, the switch to direct payment by advertisers had a significant impact on the advertising industry, as other agencies were forced to respond to Ayer's higher standard. Just as important, the open contract helped to establish N W Ayer's long-standing reputation for "clean ethics and fair dealing" -- a reputation the agency has guarded jealously for over a century. The open contract also helped to establish Ayer as a full service advertising agency and to regularize the production of advertising in-house. From that point forward, Ayer routinely offered advice and service beyond the mere placement of advertisements. Ayer set another milestone for the industry in 1888, when Jarvis Wood was hired as the industry's first full-time copywriter. Wood was joined by a second full time copywriter four years later, and the Copy Department was formally established in 1900. The industry's first Art Department grew out of the Copy Department when Ayer hired its first commercial artist to assist with copy preparation in 1898; twelve years later Ayer became the first agency to offer the services of a full time art director, whose sole responsibility was the design and illustration of ads.

Ayer's leadership in the use of fine art in advertising has roots in this period, but achieved its highest expression under the guidance of legendary art director Charles Coiner. Coiner joined Ayer in 1924, after graduating from the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts. Despite early resistance from some clients, Coiner was adamant that "the use of outstanding palette and original art forms bring a greater return in readership, in impact and prestige for the advertiser." To this end, Coiner marshaled the talents of notable painters, illustrators and photographers, including N.C. Wyeth and Rockwell Kent (Steinway), Georgia O'Keefe (Dole), Leo Lionni (DuPont), Edward Steichen (Steinway, Cannon Mills), Charles Sheeler (Ford), and Irving Penn (DeBeers). Coiner believed that there was a practical side to the use of fine art in advertising, and his success (and Ayer's) lay in the marriage of research and copywriting with fine art, an arrangement Coiner termed "art for business sake." Coiner's efforts won both awards and attention for a series completed in the 1950s for the Container Corporation of America. Titled "Great Ideas of Western Man" the campaign featured abstract and modern paintings and sculpture by leading U.S. and foreign artists, linked with Western philosophical writings in an early example of advertising designed primarily to bolster corporate image. In 1994, Charles Coiner was posthumously named to the American Advertising Federation's Hall of Fame, the first full time art director ever chosen for that honor.

Coiner and fellow art director Paul Darrow also created legendary advertising with the "A Diamond Is Forever" campaign for DeBeers; ads featured the work of Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali and other modernist painters. The "A Diamond is Forever" tagline was written in 1949 by Frances Gerety, a woman copywriter at Ayer from 1943 to 1970. In 1999, Ad Age magazine cited "A Diamond is Forever" as the most memorable advertising slogan of the twentieth century.

Coiner also earned respect for his volunteer government service during World War II; he designed the armbands for civil defense volunteers and logos for the National Recovery Administration and Community Chest. As a founding member of the Advertising Council in 1945, Ayer has had a long-standing commitment to public service advertising. In the mid-1980s, Ayer became a leading force in the Reagan-era "War on Drugs". Lou Hagopian, Ayer's sixth CEO, brokered the establishment of the Partnership for a Drug-Free America, a media coalition which generated as much as a million dollars a day in donated advertising space and time to prevent the use and abuse of illegal drugs. Famous names appear among NW Ayer's clientele from the very earliest days of the agency. Retailer John Wanamaker, Jay Cooke and Company, and Montgomery Ward's mail-order business were among the first Ayer clients. The agency has represented at least twenty automobile manufacturers, including Cadillac, Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Plymouth, and Rolls-Royce. Other major, long-term clients through the years have included American Telephone & Telegraph, Canada Dry, Cannon Mills, Hills Bros. Coffee Company, Kellogg's, R. J. Reynolds, Steinway and Sons, United Airlines, and the United States Army. By the time of Ayer's hundredth anniversary in 1969, some of these companies had been Ayer clients for decades if not generations, and the longevity of those relationships was for many years a source of Ayer's strength.

But the advertising industry began to change in the late 1960s and 1970s, due in part to a "creative revolution." Small advertising agencies won attention with provocative copywriting and art direction that more closely resembled art than advertising. Advances in market research allowed clients to more narrowly tailor their advertising messages to distinct groups of consumers, and this led to a rise in targeted marketing which could more readily be doled out to specialized small agencies than to larger, established firms like NW Ayer & Son. The civil rights and anti-war movements also contributed to increasing public skepticism with the values of corporate America, and by extension, with some national advertising campaigns. Older, more conservative firms like Ayer were hard pressed to meet these new challenges.

About 1970, in an effort to meet these challenges and to establish a foothold on the West Coast, Ayer bought out two smaller agencies--Hixson & Jorgenson (Los Angeles) and Frederick E. Baker (Seattle). The agency relocated from Philadelphia to New York City in 1974 in an attempt both to consolidate operations (Ayer had operated a New York office since the 1920s) and to be closer to the historic center of the advertising industry. Riding the wave of mergers that characterized the advertising industry in the late 1980s and 1990s, Ayer continued to grow through the acquisition of Cunningham & Walsh in 1986 and Rink Wells in 19xx.

During this transitional period, Ayer received widespread acclaim for its work for the United States Army, which included the widely recognized slogan "Be All You Can Be". Ayer first acquired the Army recruitment account in 1967 and with help from its direct marketing arm, the agency was widely credited with helping the Army reach its recruitment goals despite an unpopular war and plummeting enlistments after the elimination of the draft in 1973. Ayer held the account for two decades, from the Vietnam War through the Cold War, but lost the account in 1986 amid government charges that an Ayer employee assigned to the account accepted kickbacks from a New York film production house. Despite Ayer's position as the country's 18th largest agency (with billings of $880 million in 1985), the loss of the agency's second largest account hit hard.

NW Ayer made up for the loss of the $100 million dollar a year Army account and made headlines for being on the winning end of the largest account switch in advertising history to date, when fast food giant Burger King moved its $200 million dollar advertising account from arch-rival J. Walter Thompson in 1987. Burger King must have had drive-thru service in mind, however, and Ayer made headlines again when it lost the account just eighteen months later in another record-breaking account switch. Another devastating blow to the agency was the loss of its lead position on the American Telegraph and Telephone account. Ayer pioneered telecommunications advertising in 1908, when the agency was selected to craft advertising for the Bell System's universal telephone service. Despite valiant efforts to keep an account the agency had held for most of the twentieth century, and for which they had written such memorable corporate slogans as American Telephone &Telegraph "The Voice with a Smile" and "Reach Out and Touch Someone", the agency lost the account in 1996.

After a wave of mergers and acquisitions in the late 1980s, the economic recession of the early 1990s hit Madison Avenue hard, and Ayer was particularly vulnerable. Despite the agency's long history and roster of "blue-chip" clients, Ayer was not known for cutting-edge creative work. Moreover, though the agency had offices overseas, Ayer had never built a strong multinational presence, and many of the smaller international offices were sold during the financial turmoil of the 1980s. This left a real void in the new climate of global marketplace consolidation. By about 1990, earnings were declining (although Ayer was still among the top twenty United States agencies in billings), and the agency was suffering from client defections, high management turnover, expensive real estate commitments and deferred executive compensation deals, all fallout of the high-flying 1980s. This was the atmosphere in 1993, when W.Y. Choi, a Korean investor who had already assembled a media and marketing empire in his homeland, began looking for an American partner to form an international advertising network. Jerry Siano, the former creative director who had recently been named Ayer's seventh CEO, was in no position to refuse Choi's offer of $35 million to buy the now floundering agency. The infusion of cash was no magic bullet, however. Choi took a wait-and-see approach, allowing his partner Richard Humphreys to make key decisions about Ayer's future, including the purging of senior executives and the installation of two new CEOs in as many years.

The agency's downward trend continued with the loss of another longtime client, the DeBeers diamond cartel in 1995. Adweek reported that Ayer's billings fell from $892 million in 1990 to less than $850 million in 1995. Several top executives defected abruptly, and the agency failed to attract major new accounts. Ayer was facing the loss not merely of revenue and personnel, but the loss of much of the respect it once commanded. Ayer remained among the twenty largest U.S. agencies, but an aura of uncertainty hung over the agency like a cloud. A new CEO was appointed, and Mary Lou Quinlan became the agency's first woman CEO in 1995. A year later, Ayer and another struggling top twenty agency, D'arcy, Masius, Benton & Bowles, combined as part of the McManus Group of companies. In 1998, the McManus Group had worldwide billings of more than $6.5 billion.

Under the McManus Group, Ayer was able to expand its international operations and begin to rebuild a stronger global presence. Several important new clients were won in 1997 and 1998, including Avon, General Motors, Kitchenaid, several Procter & Gamble brands and, most notably, Continental Airlines worldwide accounts. Born in the nineteenth century, Ayer may be one of a very few advertising agencies to successfully weather the economic and cultural transitions of both the twentieth and twentieth first centuries. Ayer was eventually acquired by the Publicis Groupe based in Paris, France which closed down the N.W. Ayer offices in 2002.
Related Materials:
Materials in the Archives Center

Warshaw Collection of Business Americana (AC0060)

Hills Bros. Coffee Incorporated Records (AC0395)
Provenance:
The collection was donated by N W Ayer ABH International, April 15, 1975 and by Ayer & Partners, October 30, 1996.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research use.

Physical Access: Researchers must use microfilm copy. Researchers must handle unprotected photographs with gloves. Researchers must use reference copies of audiovisual materials. When no reference copy exists, the Archives Center staff will produce reference copies on an "as needed" basis, as resources allow.

Technical Access: Viewing the film portion of the collection without reference copies requires special appointment, please inquire; listening to audio discs requires special arrangement. Do not use original materials when available on reference video or audio tapes.
Rights:
Publication and production quality duplication is restricted due to complex copyright, publicity rights, and right to privacy issues. Potential users must receive written permission from appropriate rights holders prior to obtaining high quality copies. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Topic:
Advertising agencies  Search this
advertising  Search this
Genre/Form:
Business records -- 1840-2000
Interviews -- 1980-2000
Oral history -- 1980-1990
Print advertising
Proof sheets
Proofs (printed matter)
Scrapbooks -- 1840-1990
Trade literature
Tear sheets
Advertisements
Citation:
NW Ayer & Sons, incorporated Advertising Agency Records, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0059
See more items in:
N W Ayer Advertising Agency Records
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ep8920ed035-d211-4a58-9047-b31fa79464bd
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0059
Online Media:

William Page and Page Family papers

Creator:
Page, William, 1811-1885  Search this
Names:
National Academy of Design (U.S.)  Search this
Beecher, Henry Ward, 1813-1887  Search this
Beecher, Thomas Kinnicut, 1824-1900  Search this
Briggs, Charles F. (Charles Frederick), 1804-1877  Search this
Curtis, George William, 1824-1892  Search this
Cushman, Charlotte, 1816-1876  Search this
Fenton, Rueben  Search this
Garrison, William Lloyd, 1805-1879  Search this
Hicks, Thomas, 1823-1890  Search this
Lowell, James Russell, 1819-1891  Search this
O'Donovan, William Rudolph, 1844-1920  Search this
Olmstead, Bertha  Search this
Olmstead, Mary  Search this
Page, Sophia Stevens, 1827-1892  Search this
Page, William, 1811-1885  Search this
Perry, E. W. (Enoch Wood), 1831-1915  Search this
Phillips, Wendell, 1811-1884  Search this
Scranton, William Walker  Search this
Shaw, Francis George, 1809-1882  Search this
Stark, William, 1825-1873  Search this
Sumner, Charles, 1811-1874  Search this
Tilton, Theodore, 1835-1907  Search this
Wilmarth, Lemuel Everett, 1835-1918  Search this
Extent:
11.06 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Sketches
Poems
Drawings
Diaries
Date:
1815-1947
bulk 1843-1892
Summary:
The papers of the portraitist and art theorist William Page and the Page family measure 11.06 linear feet and date from 1815 to 1947, bulk 1843-1892. In addition to the papers of William Page, the papers include documents related to Page's wife's career as a writer and records documenting their personal lives and the lives of their family members. Types of documents found include personal documents and artifacts, correspondence, essays, lectures, diaries, poems, notes and notebooks, financial records, legal records, published works, clippings, catalogs, photographs, and artwork.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of the painter William Page and the Page family measure 11.06 linear feet and date from 1815 to 1947, with the bulk of papers dating from 1843 to 1892. Papers contain records related to the life and career of William Page, president of the National Academy of Design from 1871 to 1873 and prominent portraitist and art theorist of his day. Also found are records related to his wife's career as a writer and records documenting their personal lives and the lives of their family members. Types of documents found include personal documents and artifacts, correspondence, essays, lectures, diaries, poems, notes and notebooks, financial records, legal records, published works, clippings, catalogs, photographs, and artwork.

Correspondence includes the personal and professional correspondence of William and Sophia Page, and their parents, siblings, and children. Significant correspondents include Thomas Hicks, Enoch Wood Perry, William Stark, Theodore Tilton, Lemuel Wilmarth, Wendell Phillips, William Walker Scranton, Francis G. Shaw; James Russell Lowell, Charles Frederick Briggs, George W. Curtis, Charlotte Cushman, Thomas K. Beecher, Mary Olmsted, and Bertha Olmsted.

Writings include the essays and lectures of William Page, as written by him and revised by Sophia Page in the late 1870s, as well as Sophia's writings as a columnist in Europe in the 1850s. Notes, notebooks, diaries, and poems are also found. Personal Business Records include business records related to the sale and exhibition of artwork as well as financial and legal documents. A small number of memoranda and documents related to Page's work at the National Academy of Design are also found. Printed Materials include exhibition catalogs, published works by William and Sophia Page, and clippings and articles about Page.

Photographs consist mainly of portraits, most of them mounted cabinet photographs or cartes-des-visites, some of which appear to have been used as studies for Page's painted portraits. Among those pictured are William Page, James Russell Lowell, Henry Ward Beecher, Reuben Fenton, Wendell Phillips, Charles Sumner, William R. O'Donovan, and William Lloyd Garrison. Many of the photographic portraits are unidentified. Artwork includes sketches, drawings, prints, and a small number of notes made by Page in the course of painting portraits.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 7 series. Glass plate negatives are housed separately and closed to researchers.

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Materials and Artifacts, 1847-1917 (Box 1; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1815-1942 (Boxes 1-4, 9-10; 3.2 linear feet)

Series 3: Notes and Writings, 1839-1888, 1949 (Boxes 4-5, OV 10; 1.3 linear feet)

Series 4: Personal Business Records, 1848-1932 (Boxes 5 and 9; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 5: Printed Materials, 1845-1938 (Boxes 5-7, 9, OV 11; 1.6 linear feet)

Series 6: Photographs, 1845-1947 (Boxes 7-9, OV 12, MGP 5-6; 1.4 linear feet)

Series 7: Artwork, 1856-1874 (Box 8, OV 13-16, rolled documents 17-19; 0.6 linear feet and 3 rolled documents)
Biographical Note:
The painter William Page was born in 1811 in Albany, NY. He attended public schools in New York City, and after working briefly in the law firm of Frederick de Peyster, was placed in the studio of the painter/engraver James Herring in 1825, where he received his first formal art training. He took classes at the National Academy of Design the year it was formed, in 1826, under Samuel F.B. Morse, and in 1827 he was awarded one of the National Academy's first annual student prizes.

Page joined the Presbyterian church and attended Phillips Academy and Amherst with the intention of becoming a minister, but his artistic ability won out, and by 1830 he was painting commissioned portraits in Albany, Rochester, and New York. He married Lavinia Twibill in 1833, and they had three daughters between 1834 and 1839. He joined the American Academy and served on its board of directors in 1835. He exhibited at the American Academy, the National Academy of Design, the Boston Athenaeum, and other venues throughout the 1830s. Favorable reviews brought steady portrait commissions, including John Quincy Adams and the New York governor William L. Marcy. He was made a full member of the National Academy in 1837.

In the 1840s, Page's reputation and maturity as a painter grew. His first wife left him around 1840, and in 1843 he married Sarah Dougherty. The couple moved to Albany, Boston, and back to New York seeking portrait commissions and patronage. He became friends with the poet James Russell Lowell and the writer and publisher Charles Frederick Briggs, two writers and editors who helped to promote his artwork in Boston and New York and published his theoretical writings. In 1844, Lowell dedicated his first published book of poetry to Page, and the following year, Briggs published a series of articles by Page in the Broadway Journal, entitled "The Art of the Use of Color in Imitation in Painting." The series described Page's arduous experiments with color and glazes, and his ideas about correspondences between spirituality and the natural world as expressed in art.

In 1850, Page traveled to Florence, Italy, where he painted several copies of the works of Titian in the galleries of the Uffizi and Pitti palaces, studying his use of color and further developing his own experimental techniques. He became friends with the sculptor Hiram Powers, who introduced him to the writings of Emmanuel Swedenborg, a Christian metaphysician whose ideas fueled Page's interest in the spiritual aspects of art. In 1852, Page moved to Rome, a city with an international artists' community and a strong market for art. Page found a loyal following in Rome's large circle of American ex-patriates, including the sculptors Thomas Crawford and Harriet Hosmer, the actress Charlotte Cushman, and the poets Robert and Elizabeth Barrett Browning, all of whom sat for portraits by Page.

In 1854, Page's second wife left him amidst public scandal, and he sank deep in debt to his bankers at Packenham and Hooker, an English firm that by 1856 had a lien on all the paintings in his studio. That same year Page met Sophia Stevens Hitchcock, an American widow traveling in Rome with Bertha Olmsted, Frederick Law Olmsted's sister. Hitchcock was from Barnet, Vermont and came to Europe after her first husband died in 1852 after only a year of marriage. She traveled to England and Paris, where she wrote regular columns on local customs and events for the New York Tribune that were published under the by-line "An American Woman in Paris." She and Page met in Rome in 1856, and in October 1857, after Page traveled back the United States to obtain a divorce from Sarah Dougherty, he and Sophia married.

The couple stayed in Rome until 1860. His wife's three brothers, all businessmen, helped to promote his artwork in Europe and America. Page's paintings of this period include several Venus subjects, one of which was championed by his most loyal patrons, who raised $3000 by subscription to buy the painting for the Boston Athenaeum. A later Venus painting was rejected from the Paris salon for indecency, a controversy that was later leveraged for publicity in a touring exhibition in the United States.

The Pages returned to the United States in 1860 and settled in Tottenville, New York. They had six children between 1858 and 1870. Page had a studio at Eagleswood, NJ, and later in the Studio Building on 10th Street in Manhattan, where he held a large exhibition in 1867. In the 1860s, he painted a self-portrait and a companion portrait of Sophia set in Rome, as well as a series of civil war heroes including Robert Gould Shaw, Winfield Scott, and David Farragut. Photographs played a consistent part in Page's technique of portraiture, and he is known to have worked with the photographer Matthew Brady, who attended art classes early on with Page, as well as the photographers Sarony and Charles Williamson, who taught classes on drawing from enlarged photo-transparencies. Brady photographs taken for Page include David Farragut and Reuben Fenton.

Page lectured frequently on Titian and Venetian art, a subject in which he was considered an expert, and on painting technique and his philosophical ideas about nature, art, and spirituality. In 1871, Page was elected the president of the National Academy of Design, a post he held until 1873, but his poor health following a collapse in 1872 limited his accomplishments in office. Despite these limitations, he continued to paint, including portraits of General Grant, an idealized portrait of the president based on early photographs and Charles Sumner. He also became interested in portraiture of William Shakespeare around this time, and his studies resulted in a book, Shakespeare's Portraits, a bust based on existing portraiture, and a full-length portrait entitled "Shakespeare Reading," based on Page's measurements of a supposed death mask in Darmstadt, Germany, which he went to inspect against the advice of his doctor in 1874.

In 1877, another collapse left Page incapacitated for the remainder of his life. Sophia Page tried editing and publishing his writings and lectures, but with little success. Page died in 1885. A life marked by personal scandal ended the same, when two of his daughters from his first marriage contested his will, tying up his estate in a lengthy and public probate trial. Their suit was dismissed in 1889, and Sophia Page died in 1892.

This biography relies heavily on Joshua Taylor's William Page: The American Titian (1957).
Separated Material:
The Archives of American Art also holds materials lent for microfilming (reel 1091) including letters from Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning, Lydia Maria Child, Charlotte Cushman, James Russell Lowell, Charles A. Dana, and others. Lent material was returned to the donor and is This material is not described in the container listing of this finding aid.
Provenance:
A portion of the collection was donated to the Archives of American Art by Mrs. Lesslie S. (Pauline Page) Howell, William Page's grandaughter, in 1963. William S. Page, Pauline Page Howell's nephew, donated additional papers in 1964 and 1973. Pauline Page Howell and William S. Page also loaned a group of letters to the Archives in 1964 which were microfilmed on reel 1091 and then returned to the donors. Mrs. Howell's son, William Page Howell, donated material in 1980.

Letters of Charles F. Briggs to James Russell Lowell (Series 2.2) were a part of Pauline Page Howell's 1963 donation to the Archives of American Art. They had been given to Mrs. Howell by Charlotte Briggs, daughter of Charles F. Briggs, because of her father's lifelong friendship with William Page. Letters from Lowell to Briggs are in the James Russell Lowell papers in Houghton Library at Harvard University.
Restrictions:
The collection has been digitized and is available online via AAA's website.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Topic:
Works of art  Search this
Portrait painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Portrait painting -- 19th century -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Sketches
Poems
Drawings
Diaries
Citation:
William Page and Page Family papers, 1815-1947, bulk 1843-1892. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.pagewill
See more items in:
William Page and Page Family papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw98de7b472-afbe-4b16-bbf1-c573fb9dcac6
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-pagewill
Online Media:

Western Union Telegraph Company Records

Creator:
United Telegraph Workers.  Search this
Western Union Telegraph Company  Search this
Extent:
452 Cubic feet (871 boxes and 23 map folders)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Administrative records
Articles
Books
Clippings
Contracts
Drawings
Photographs
Patents
Newsletters
Photograph albums
Scrapbooks
Specifications
Technical documents
Date:
circa 1820-1995
Summary:
The collection documents in photographs, scrapbooks, notebooks, correspondence, stock ledgers, annual reports, and financial records, the evolution of the telegraph, the development of the Western Union Telegraph Company, and the beginning of the communications revolution. The collection materials describe both the history of the company and of the telegraph industry in general, particularly its importance to the development of the technology in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The collection is useful for researchers interested in the development of technology, economic history, and the impact of technology on American social and cultural life.
Scope and Contents:
The collection is divided into twenty-six (26) series and consists of approximately 400 cubic feet. The collection documents in photographs, scrapbooks, notebooks, correspondence, stock ledgers, annual reports, and financial records, the evolution of the telegraph, the development of the Western Union Telegraph Company, and the beginning of the communications revolution. The collection materials describe both the history of the company and of the telegraph industry in general, particularly its importance to the development of the technology in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The collection is useful for researchers interested in the development of technology, economic history, and the impact of technology on American social and cultural life.
Arrangement:
The collection is divided into twenty-seven series.

Series 1: Historical and Background Information, 1851-1994

Series 2: Subsidiaries of Western Union, 1844-1986

Series 3: Executive Records, 1848-1987

Series 4: Presidential Letterbooks and Writings, 1865-1911

Series 5: Correspondence, 1837-1985

Series 6: Cyrus W. Field Papers, 1840-1892

Series 7: Secretary's Files, 1844-1987

Series 8: Financial Records, 1859-1995

Series 9: Legal Records, 1867-1968

Series 10: Railroad Records, 1854-1945

Series 11: Law Department Records, 1868-1979

Series 12: Patent Materials, 1840-1970

Series 13: Operating Records, 1868-1970s

Series 14: Westar VI-S, 1974, 1983-1986

Series 15: Engineering Department Records, 1874-1970

Series 16: Plant Department Records, 1867-1937, 1963

Series 17: Superintendent of Supplies Records, 1888-1948

Series 18: Employee/Personnel Records 1852-1985

Series 19: Public Relations Department Records, 1858-1980

Series 20: Western Union Museum, 1913-1971

Series 21: Maps, 1820-1964

Series 22: Telegrams, 1852-1960s

Series 23: Photographs, circa 1870-1980

Series 24: Scrapbooks, 1835-1956

Series 25: Notebooks, 1880-1942

Series 26: Audio Visual Materials, 1925-1994

Series 27: Addenda
Biographical / Historical:
In 1832 Samuel F. B. Morse, assisted by Alfred Vail, conceived of the idea for an electromechanical telegraph, which he called the "Recording Telegraph." This commercial application of electricity was made tangible by their construction of a crude working model in 1835-36. This instrument probably was never used outside of Professor Morse's rooms where it was, however, operated in a number of demonstrations. This original telegraph instrument was in the hands of the Western Union Telegraph Company and had been kept carefully over the years in a glass case. It was moved several times in New York as the Western Union headquarters building changed location over the years. The company presented it to the Smithsonian Institution in 1950.

The telegraph was further refined by Morse, Vail, and a colleague, Leonard Gale, into working mechanical form in 1837. In this year Morse filed a caveat for it at the U.S. Patent Office. Electricity, provided by Joseph Henry's 1836 "intensity batteries", was sent over a wire. The flow of electricity through the wire was interrupted for shorter or longer periods by holding down the key of the device. The resulting dots or dashes were recorded on a printer or could be interpreted orally. In 1838 Morse perfected his sending and receiving code and organized a corporation, making Vail and Gale his partners.

In 1843 Morse received funds from Congress to set-up a demonstration line between Washington and Baltimore. Unfortunately, Morse was not an astute businessman and had no practical plan for constructing a line. After an unsuccessful attempt at laying underground cables with Ezra Cornell, the inventor of a trench digger, Morse switched to the erection of telegraph poles and was more successful. On May 24, 1844, Morse, in the U.S. Supreme Court Chambers in Washington, sent by telegraph the oft-quoted message to his colleague Vail in Baltimore, "What hath God wrought!"

In 1845 Morse hired Andrew Jackson's former postmaster general, Amos Kendall, as his agent in locating potential buyers of the telegraph. Kendall realized the value of the device, and had little trouble convincing others of its potential for profit. By the spring he had attracted a small group of investors. They subscribed $15,000 and formed the Magnetic Telegraph Company. Many new telegraph companies were formed as Morse sold licenses wherever he could.

The first commercial telegraph line was completed between Washington, D.C., and New York City in the spring of 1846 by the Magnetic Telegraph Company. Shortly thereafter, F. O. J. Smith, one of the patent owners, built a line between New York City and Boston. Most of these early companies were licensed by owners of Samuel Morse patents. The Morse messages were sent and received in a code of dots and dashes.

At this time other telegraph systems based on rival technologies were being built. Some companies used the printing telegraph, a device invented by a Vermonter, Royal E. House, whose messages were printed on paper or tape in Roman letters. In 1848 a Scotch scientist, Alexander Bain, received his patents on a telegraph. These were but two of many competing and incompatible technologies that had developed. The result was confusion, inefficiency, and a rash of suits and counter suits.

By 1851 there were over fifty separate telegraph companies operating in the United States. This corporate cornucopia developed because the owners of the telegraph patents had been unsuccessful in convincing the United States and other governments of the invention's potential usefulness. In the private sector, the owners had difficulty convincing capitalists of the commercial value of the invention. This led to the owners' willingness to sell licenses to many purchasers who organized separate companies and then built independent telegraph lines in various sections of the country.

Hiram Sibley moved to Rochester, New York, in 1838 to pursue banking and real estate. Later he was elected sheriff of Monroe County. In Rochester he was introduced to Judge Samuel L. Selden who held the House Telegraph patent rights. In 1849 Selden and Sibley organized the New York State Printing Telegraph Company, but they found it hard to compete with the existing New York, Albany, and Buffalo Telegraph Company.

After this experience Selden suggested that instead of creating a new line, the two should try to acquire all the companies west of Buffalo and unite them into a single unified system. Selden secured an agency for the extension throughout the United States of the House system. In an effort to expand this line west, Judge Selden called on friends and the people in Rochester. This led, in April 1851, to the organization of a company and the filing in Albany of the Articles of Association for the "New York and Mississippi Valley Printing Telegraph Company" (NYMVPTC), a company which later evolved into the Western Union Telegraph Company.

In 1854 there were two rival systems of the NYMVPTC in the West. These two systems consisted of thirteen separate companies. All the companies were using Morse patents in the five states north of the Ohio River. This created a struggle between three separate entities, leading to an unreliable and inefficient telegraph service. The owners of these rival companies eventually decided to invest their money elsewhere and arrangements were made for the NYMVPTC to purchase their interests.

Hiram Sibley recapitalized the company in 1854 under the same name and began a program of construction and acquisition. The most important takeover was carried out by Sibley when he negotiated the purchase of the Morse patent rights for the Midwest for $50,000 from Jeptha H. Wade and John J. Speed, without the knowledge of Ezra Cornell, their partner in the Erie and Michigan Telegraph Company (EMTC). With this acquisition Sibley proceeded to switch to the superior Morse system. He also hired Wade, a very capable manager, who became his protege and later his successor. After a bitter struggle Morse and Wade obtained the EMTC from Cornell in 1855, thus assuring dominance by the NYMVPTC in the Midwest. In 1856 the company name was changed to the "Western Union Telegraph Company," indicating the union of the Western lines into one compact system. In December, 1857, the Company paid stockholders their first dividend.

Between 1857 and 1861 similar consolidations of telegraph companies took place in other areas of the country so that most of the telegraph interests of the United States had merged into six systems. These were the American Telegraph Company (covering the Atlantic and some Gulf states), The Western Union Telegraph Company (covering states North of the Ohio River and parts of Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Minnesota), the New York Albany and Buffalo Electro-Magnetic Telegraph Company (covering New York State), the Atlantic and Ohio Telegraph Company (covering Pennsylvania), the Illinois & Mississippi Telegraph Company (covering sections of Missouri, Iowa, and Illinois), and the New Orleans & Ohio Telegraph Company (covering the southern Mississippi Valley and the Southwest). All these companies worked together in a mutually friendly alliance, and other small companies cooperated with the six systems, particularly some on the West Coast.

By the time of the Civil War, there was a strong commercial incentive to construct a telegraph line across the western plains to link the two coasts of America. Many companies, however, believed the line would be impossible to build and maintain.

In 1860 Congress passed, and President James Buchanan signed, the Pacific Telegraph Act, which authorized the Secretary of the Treasury to seek bids for a project to construct a transcontinental line. When two bidders dropped out, Hiram Sibley, representing Western Union, was the only bidder left. By default Sibley won the contract. The Pacific Telegraph Company was organized for the purpose of building the eastern section of the line. Sibley sent Wade to California, where he consolidated the small local companies into the California State Telegraph Company. This entity then organized the Overland Telegraph Company, which handled construction eastward from Carson City, Nevada, joining the existing California lines, to Salt Lake City, Utah. Sibley's Pacific Telegraph Company built westward from Omaha, Nebraska. Sibley put most of his resources into the venture. The line was completed in October, 1861. Both companies were soon merged into Western Union. This accomplishment made Hiram Sibley leader of the telegraph industry.

Further consolidations took place over the next several years. Many companies merged into the American Telegraph Company. With the expiration of the Morse patents, several organizations were combined in 1864 under the name of "The U.S. Telegraph Company." In 1866 the final consolidation took place, with Western Union exchanging stock for the stock of the other two organizations. The general office of Western Union moved at this time from Rochester to 145 Broadway, New York City. In 1875 the main office moved to 195 Broadway, where it remained until 1930 when it relocated to 60 Hudson Street.

In 1873 Western Union purchased a majority of shares in the International Ocean Telegraph Company. This was an important move because it marked Western Union's entry into the foreign telegraph market. Having previously worked with foreign companies, Western Union now began competing for overseas business.

In the late 1870s Western Union, led by William H. Vanderbilt, attempted to wrest control of the major telephone patents, and the new telephone industry, away from the Bell Telephone Company. But due to new Bell leadership and a subsequent hostile takeover attempt of Western Union by Jay Gould, Western Union discontinued its fight and Bell Telephone prevailed.

Despite these corporate calisthenics, Western Union remained in the public eye. The sight of a uniformed Western Union messenger boy was familiar in small towns and big cities all over the country for many years. Some of Western Union's top officials in fact began their careers as messenger boys.

Throughout the remainder of the nineteenth century the telegraph became one of the most important factors in the development of social and commercial life of America. In spite of improvements to the telegraph, however, two new inventions--the telephone (nineteenth century) and the radio (twentieth century)--eventually replaced the telegraph as the leaders of the communication revolution for most Americans.

At the turn of the century, Bell abandoned its struggles to maintain a monopoly through patent suits, and entered into direct competition with the many independent telephone companies. Around this time, the company adopted its new name, the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T).

In 1908 AT&T gained control of Western Union. This proved beneficial to Western Union, because the companies were able to share lines when needed, and it became possible to order telegrams by telephone. However, it was only possible to order Western Union telegrams, and this hurt the business of Western Union's main competitor, the Postal Telegraph Company. In 1913, however, as part of a move to prevent the government from invoking antitrust laws, AT&T completely separated itself from Western Union.

Western Union continued to prosper and it received commendations from the U.S. armed forces for service during both world wars. In 1945 Western Union finally merged with its longtime rival, the Postal Telegraph Company. As part of that merger, Western Union agreed to separate domestic and foreign business. In 1963 Western Union International Incorporated, a private company completely separate from the Western Union Telegraph Company, was formed and an agreement with the Postal Telegraph Company was completed. In 1994, Western Union Financial Services, Inc. was acquired by First Financial Management Corporation. In 1995, First Financial Management Corporation merged with First Data Corporation making Western Union a First Data subsidiary.

Many technological advancements followed the telegraph's development. The following are among the more important:

The first advancement of the telegraph occurred around 1850 when operators realized that the clicks of the recording instrument portrayed a sound pattern, understandable by the operators as dots and dashes. This allowed the operator to hear the message by ear and simultaneously write it down. This ability transformed the telegraph into a versatile and speedy system.

Duplex Telegraphy, 1871-72, was invented by the president of the Franklin Telegraph Company. Unable to sell his invention to his own company, he found a willing buyer in Western Union. Utilizing this invention, two messages were sent over the wire simultaneously, one in each direction.

As business blossomed and demand surged, new devices appeared. Thomas Edison's Quadruplex allowed four messages to be sent over the same wire simultaneously, two in one direction and two in the other.

An English automatic signaling arrangement, Wheatstone's Automatic Telegraph, 1883, allowed larger numbers of words to be transmitted over a wire at once. It could only be used advantageously, however, on circuits where there was a heavy volume of business.

Buckingham's Machine Telegraph was an improvement on the House system. It printed received messages in plain Roman letters quickly and legibly on a message blank, ready for delivery.

Vibroplex, c. 1890, a semi-automatic key sometimes called a "bug key," made the dots automatically. This relieved the operator of much physical strain.
Related Materials:
Materials in the Archives Center

Additional moving image about Western Union Telegraph Company can be found in the Industry on Parade Collection (AC0507). This includes Cable to Cuba! by Bell Laboratory, AT & T, featuring the cable ship, the C.S. Lord Kelvin, and Communications Centennial! by the Western Union Company.

Materials at Other Organizations

Hagley Museum and Library, Wilmington, Delaware.

Western Union International Records form part of the MCI International, Inc. Records at the First Data Corporation, Greenwood Village, Colorado.

Records of First Data Corporation and its predecessors, including Western Union, First Financial Management Corporation (Atlanta) and First Data Resources (Omaha). Western Union collection supports research of telegraphy and related technologies, and includes company records, annual reports, photographs, print and broadcast advertising, telegraph equipment, and messenger uniforms.

Smithsonian Institution Archives

Western Union Telegraph Expedition, 1865-1867

This collection includes correspondence, mostly to Spencer F. Baird, from members of the Scientific Corps of the Western Union Telegraph Expedition, including Kennicott, Dall, Bannister, and Elliott; copies of reports submitted to divisional chiefs from expedition staff members; newspaper clippings concerning the expedition; copies of notes on natural history taken by Robert Kennicott; and a journal containing meteorological data recorded by Henry M. Bannister from March to August, 1866.
Separated Materials:
Artifacts (apparatus and equipment) were donated to the Division of Information Technology and Society, now known as the Division of Work & Industry, National Museum of American History.
Provenance:
The collection was donated by Western Union in September of 1971.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research but Series 11 and films are stored off-site. Special arrangements must be made to view some of the audiovisual materials. Contact the Archives Center for information at archivescenter@si.edu or 202-633-3270.
Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Topic:
Communications equipment  Search this
Communication -- International cooperation  Search this
Electric engineering  Search this
Electric engineers  Search this
Electrical equipment  Search this
Electrical science and technology  Search this
Telegraphers  Search this
Telegraph  Search this
Genre/Form:
Administrative records
Articles
Books
Clippings
Contracts
Drawings
Photographs -- 19th century
Patents
Photographs -- 20th century
Newsletters
Photograph albums
Scrapbooks -- 19th century
Scrapbooks -- 20th century
Specifications
Technical documents
Citation:
Western Union Telegraph Company Records, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0205
See more items in:
Western Union Telegraph Company Records
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ep8b72e8493-288c-4bd0-84d5-011155da30a7
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0205
Online Media:

Warshaw Collection of Business Americana Subject Categories: Banking

Creator:
Warshaw, Isadore, 1900-1969  Search this
Extent:
13.66 Cubic feet (consisting of 30 boxes, 2 folders, 6 oversize folders.)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Publications
Business cards
Ephemera
Print advertising
Legal correspondence
Letterheads
Promissory notes
Advertisements
Legal records
Wills
Business letters
Business ephemera
Financial records
Commercial correspondence
Advertising
Stock certificates
Illustrations
Stock records
Receipts
Advertising cards
Printed ephemera
Periodicals
Correspondence
Caricatures
Bank statements
Invoices
Advertising mail
Receipts (financial records)
Legal documents
Business records
Land titles
Date:
1724-1975
Summary:
A New York bookseller, Warshaw assembled this collection over nearly fifty years. The Warshaw Collection of Business Americana: Banking and Banks forms part of the Warshaw Collection of Business Americana, Subseries 1.1: Subject Categories. The Subject Categories subseries is divided into 470 subject categories based on those created by Mr. Warshaw. These subject categories include topical subjects, types or forms of material, people, organizations, historical events, and other categories. An overview to the entire Warshaw collection is available here: Warshaw Collection of Business Americana
Scope and Contents:
Most of the banking documents are 19th century (1830-1890) commercial banking correspondence on letterhead stationary between banking customers and clients and their banks, banking houses, dealers and exchanges (rather than bank to bank correspondence) and cancelled checks from large banks such as Shawmut Bank, Bank of Kent, Bank of Whitehall, and Wells Fargo. Correspondence topics include loans, foreign currency exchanges, mortgages, estates and taxes.

Banking regulations, bank annual reports, state and congressional legislation, stock certificates, and bond certificates are also present.

Notes of exchange (first, second and third exchanges), what appears to be scrip issued for currency requirements, promissory notes ("I promise to pay"), complaints concerning non-payment, and a few documents on banknote companies are among the materials.

Bank-issued booklets on various subjects such as saving money, the effect of various depressions, including The Great Depression, may be included in the folder of the publishing bank, and a few other related publications are in the subject series.

Some early material on investment banks (Kidder Peabody, Brown Brothers) and a large number of items from The Manhattan Company, an early bank type organization is also included.

Most of the material comes from the northeastern United States, with a large amount from New York. The vast majority of items are organized by name of the issuing bank, or the name of the bank that cashed the check, with names like "Bank of Kent" filed under "Kent, Bank of". Banks named First National Bank of... are filed under "F" and banks with names like State Bank of New York are filed under "S". Those items that do not contain an identifiable bank name have been filed in Checks and Records by state.

Documents where no bank name or geographic origin is discernible are in folders organized by document examples, e.g. Bankruptcy and Foreclosure.

A small number of documents and checks from non-U.S. banks are included in Box 29.
Arrangement:
The original arrangement was completed by Archives Center Staff (date unknown). Minor modification was made to the arrangement during additional processing. The collection is arranged into three subseries.

Series 1: Business Records and Marketing Material, 1724-1975

Series 2: Genre, 1836-1913

Series 3: Subjects, 1857-1967

Business Records and Marketing Material

Genre

Subject
Forms Part Of:
Forms part of the Warshaw Collection of Business Americana.

Series 1: Business Ephemera

Series 2: Other Collection Divisions

Series 3: Isadore Warshaw Personal Papers

Series 4: Photographic Reference Material
Provenance:
Banking and Bankers is a portion of the Business Ephemera Series of the Warshaw Collection of Business Americana, Accession AC0060 purchased from Isadore Warshaw in 1967. Warshaw continued to accumulate similar material until his death, which was donated in 1971 by his widow, Augusta. For a period after acquisition, related materials from other sources (of mixed provenance) were added to the collection so there may be content produced or published after Warshaw's death in 1969. This practice has since ceased.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research. Some items may be restricted due to fragile condition.
Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Occupation:
Bankers  Search this
Topic:
Advertising history  Search this
Savings bonds  Search this
Banks and banking, American -- 19th century  Search this
Education -- finance  Search this
Land titles -- Registration and transfer  Search this
Banking  Search this
Money  Search this
advertising -- Banks  Search this
Loans, Personal -- 18th century  Search this
Genre/Form:
Publications -- Business
Business cards
Ephemera
Print advertising
Legal correspondence
Letterheads
Promissory notes
Advertisements
Legal records
Wills
Business letters
Business ephemera
Financial records
Commercial correspondence
Advertising
Stock certificates
Illustrations
Stock records
Receipts
Advertising cards
Printed ephemera
Periodicals
Correspondence
Caricatures
Bank statements
Invoices
Advertising mail
Receipts (financial records)
Legal documents
Business records
Publications
Land titles
Citation:
Warshaw Collection of Business Americana Subject Categories: Banking, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0060.S01.01.Banking
See more items in:
Warshaw Collection of Business Americana Subject Categories: Banking
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ep89b339508-4832-435a-bac5-67dca694aa8c
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0060-s01-01-banking

Warshaw Collection of Business Americana Subject Categories: Plays

Creator:
Warshaw, Isadore, 1900-1969  Search this
Extent:
10.92 Cubic feet (consisting of 23 boxes, 2 folders, 2 oversize folders, 1 flat box, plus digital images of some collection material. )
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Business ephemera
Ephemera
Date:
1708-1938
Summary:
A New York bookseller, Warshaw assembled this collection over nearly fifty years. The Warshaw Collection of Business Americana: Plays forms part of the Warshaw Collection of Business Americana, Subseries 1.1: Subject Categories. The Subject Categories subseries is divided into 470 subject categories based on those created by Mr. Warshaw. These subject categories include topical subjects, types or forms of material, people, organizations, historical events, and other categories. An overview to the entire Warshaw collection is available here: Warshaw Collection of Business Americana
Scope and Contents note:
Man has performed for his fellow man since the dawn of time. Whether it be the story of the hunt, part of religious worship or an evening of drama or music the art of performing has been part of human existence for countless ages.

The "Plays" section of the Warshaw Collection consists of various types of materials relating to plays, operas and their production. The material is especially strong in providing actual copies of plays and operas, 1708-1924. This portion of the collection is divided into eight series:

Subseries 1: Plays, 1708-1918 & undated; contains copies of the scripts and is arranged alphabetically by title. Dates given are either copyright/publication dates or dates when first performed whichever is earlier.

Subseries 2: French Language Plays, OperasS, 1821-1924; contains a variety of plays and operas written in French and is arranged alphabetically by title. Dates given are either copyright dates or dates when first performed whichever is earlier.

Subseries 3: Operas, ca. 1800-1911 & undated.; contains librettos and scores for the operas listed and is arranged alphabetically by composer. The folders may contain either scores, librettos or programs.

Subseries 4: Prompt Books, 1779-1895 & undated.; contains prompt books used by prompters and stage managers in the production of a play. The prompt books contain notes made by the stage manager relevant to the staging of the work and in some cases there are scenery plots included as well. The series is arranged alphabetically by the play title.

Subseries 5: Related Theatre Publications, 1877-1925 & undated.; contains a variety of materials relating to acting, recitation and production. The series is arranged chronologically.

Subseries 6: Catalogues, 1904-1935 & undated; contains a range of catalogues from various publishing houses advertising the works licensed by them. The series is arranged alphabetically.

Subseries 7: Arthur W. Tams Music Libray, Inc. Corporate Records, 1892-1938; Arthur W. Tams, Inc. began business in approximately 1870 as a music, and later musical play, licensing and rental house. The Tams company reportedly controlled the largest collection of cantatas, oratorios and masses as well as the works of John Philip Sousa and Franz Lehar. Earlier located at 1600 Broadway between 48th and 49th streets, Tams re-located in 1916 to 1650 Broadway. Tams moved to their new, custom-built office building, 318-320 West 46th St. NYC, in July, 1921. There is a substantial amount of correspondence and construction contracts concerning the construction of these offices and their layout and finishes. Most of the correspondence from the Arthur Tams Company in this collection concerns matters relating to copyright. Sargent Aborn, one time secretary and general manager of Tams was a Mason. In 1925, Tams merged with the Witmark Music Library and formed Tams-Witmark Music Library, Inc. The Witmark company controlled the works of Victor Herbert, Reginald DeKoven and others. With this merger the company controlled the largest collection of printed and manuscript music then in existence. The merger proved wildly successful and the Tams-Witmark Music Library, Inc. is still in business, located at 560 Lexington Ave., New York, NY. Subseries 7 includes correspondence, financial records, catalogues, costume plots, property plots, advertising, blank letterhead and costume contracts, unidentified photographs and a stamped vocal score.

Subseries 8: Advertising and Programs, 1880-1911 & undated.; Series 8 contains general advertising for plays, licensing houses and instructional texts. This series also contains programs from several tours performed by Sarah Bernhardt in the United States. There is also an appreciation of the actor Charles Young, an early 19th century tragic actor.
Materials in the Archives Center:
Archives Center Collection of Business Americana (AC0404)
Forms Part Of:
Forms part of the Warshaw Collection of Business Americana.

Missing Title

Series 1: Business Ephemera

Series 2: Other Collection Divisions

Series 3: Isadore Warshaw Personal Papers

Series 4: Photographic Reference Material
Provenance:
Plays is a portion of the Business Ephemera Series of the Warshaw Collection of Business Americana, Accession AC0060 purchased from Isadore Warshaw in 1967. Warshaw continued to accumulate similar material until his death, which was donated in 1971 by his widow, Augusta. For a period after acquisition, related materials from other sources (of mixed provenance) were added to the collection so there may be content produced or published after Warshaw's death in 1969. This practice has since ceased.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research. Some items may be restricted due to fragile condition.
Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Genre/Form:
Business ephemera
Ephemera
Citation:
Warshaw Collection of Business Americana Subject Categories: Plays, Archives Center, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0060.S01.01.Plays
See more items in:
Warshaw Collection of Business Americana Subject Categories: Plays
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ep84c2ede64-86b1-42e8-b6e2-433a4675cc56
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0060-s01-01-plays
Online Media:

Henson Family Papers

Creator:
Henson family  Search this
Names:
Henson family  Search this
Henson, Tobias  Search this
Extent:
0.18 Linear feet (1 box)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Leaflets
Correspondence
Financial records
Newsletters
Account books
Receipts
Legal documents
Place:
Washington (D.C.)
Anacostia (Washington, D.C.)
Date:
1818-1943
bulk 1830-1900
Summary:
The Henson Family papers, which date from 1818 to 1943 and measure 0.18 linear feet, document the activities of Tobias Henson and his descendants. The papers are comprised of booklets, correspondence, legal documents, and receipts.
Scope and Contents:
This collection documents the activities of Tobias Henson and his descendants between 1818 and 1943. It contains materials related to the Hensons' financial and legal activities. Included in the collection are booklets, correspondence, deeds and titles, legal documents, and receipts.

Arrangement The papers are organized into four series. The content of each series is arranged alphabetically. The series are arranged as follows:

Series I: Financial Records Series II: Legal Records Series III: Printed Materials Series IV: Miscellaneous
Arrangement note:
The collection is arranged by series: 1) Financial Records, 2) Legal Records, 3) Printed Materials, 4) Miscellaneous.
Biographical/Historical note:
The history of the Hensons begins with the family's patriarch, Tobias Henson. Mr. Henson was a slave in the Washington, DC area during the 18th and 19th centuries and, given his family's history, it is apparent that he was a man with an ambitious mission: to attain the American dream. He had two tasks to accomplish if he were to see his dream realized. First he had to gain freedom for himself and his family. Second he had to purchase property upon which he could build a home, and from which he could earn a living.

He took the first step in 1813 when he purchased himself from his slave master, thus gaining his freedom. Next he purchased his wife, Elizabeth. In April of 1832 Mr. Henson purchased his daughter Matlinda Smith and her three children. In May of the following year he purchased his second daughter Mary Anderson.

With these purchases, Tobias Henson became a slaveholder, with his wife and children his slaves. Ever resourceful, Mr. Henson used this to his advantage; he rented out his daughters for income and used them as collateral for loans. With the income he generated, he purchased the freedom of his other family members. In fact, he used his daughters, Matlinda and Mary, as collateral for a loan he acquired to purchase Mary's freedom.

In addition to purchasing his freedom in 1813, Tobias Henson entered into an agreement to buy land in the Anacostia section of Washington, DC. The land, named the Ridge, consisted of twenty-four acres located in the Congress Heights section of Anacostia. He made payments on the Ridge until 1826, at which time he made the final payment and became the legal owner. Initially Mr. Henson farmed the land, but as his family grew he subdivided the acreage so that the members of his family could experience their own American dream.

Over the subsequent decades members of the Henson family continued to purchase land in the area surrounding the Ridge; at one point they were one of the largest landowners in the Anacostia section of Washington, DC. The family maintained residence on various parts of the land from the time of its purchase until the middle of the 20th century. Title records filed with the District of Columbia show that, in 1931, the portion of the Ridge that Tobias Henson gave to his grandson, Richard Smith, was still in possession of his descendants. But that was the exception. Most of the Henson family's real estate was either sold or "taken" by the government under the auspices of eminent domain. Just a decade after this title was filed, the federal government made plans to take what remained of the Ridge.

The family did all they could to save the legacy of Tobias Henson. They contacted local and federal government officials in an attempt to stave off what would amount to the destruction of an important piece of black history dating from antebellum Washington, DC. When they had exhausted all of the possibilities, they made a last ditch appeal to First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt. In a 1943 letter they pleaded,

At the present there are some thirteen or fourteen families living on this land, which is still designated as the Ridge, and with only one or two exceptions, these families are the direct descendants of Tobian [sic] Henson…we do not feel that taking our homes will aid in the War Effort or in the Ideals of Democracy.

Unfortunately, their plea went unanswered; the land was taken by the government and the houses thereon where razed.
Related Materials:
Anacostia Historical Society Records.
Restrictions:
Use of the materials requires an appointment. Please contact the archivist to make an appointment: ACMarchives@si.edu.
Topic:
Slavery -- United States  Search this
African American military personnel  Search this
Free blacks  Search this
African Education Society  Search this
American Colonization Society  Search this
Public housing  Search this
Eminent domain  Search this
African American neighborhoods  Search this
Freedmen  Search this
African American families  Search this
Genre/Form:
Leaflets
Correspondence
Financial records
Newsletters
Account books
Receipts
Legal documents
Citation:
Henson family papers, Anacostia Community Museum Archives, Smithsonian Institution, gift of Dr. Myrtle Henson.
Identifier:
ACMA.06-030
See more items in:
Henson Family Papers
Archival Repository:
Anacostia Community Museum Archives
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/qa7097e977b-a52f-4705-be73-b4e5e4c62659
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-acma-06-030
Online Media:

Sylvester Rosa Koehler papers, 1833-1904, bulk 1870-1890

Creator:
Koehler, S. R. (Sylvester Rosa), 1837-1900  Search this
Subject:
Falconer, John Mackie  Search this
Anderson, Alexander  Search this
Juengling, Frederick  Search this
Harfin, Jean F.  Search this
Smillie, James David  Search this
Citation:
Sylvester Rosa Koehler papers, 1833-1904, bulk 1870-1890. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
American Art Review  Search this
Prints -- 19th century  Search this
Art literature  Search this
Museum curators -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Artists -- United States  Search this
Theme:
Research and writing about art  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)7082
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)209215
AAA_collcode_koehsylv
Theme:
Research and writing about art
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_209215
Online Media:

Henry Hudson and Theo Alice Ruggles Kitson papers, [187-]-1979

Creator:
Kitson, Henry Hudson, 1863?-1947  Search this
Kitson, Theo Alice Ruggles, 1871-1932  Search this
Subject:
Kitson, Samuel James  Search this
Cavanagh, Dorothy  Search this
Type:
Scrapbooks
Citation:
Henry Hudson and Theo Alice Ruggles Kitson papers, [187-]-1979. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Sculpture, American  Search this
Sculpture, Modern -- 19th century -- United States  Search this
Sculpture, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Bronze sculpture, American  Search this
Bronze founding  Search this
Theme:
Diaries  Search this
Lives of artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)7186
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)209323
AAA_collcode_kitshenr
Theme:
Diaries
Lives of artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_209323

Victor D. Spark papers, circa 1830-1983, bulk 1930-1970

Creator:
Spark, Victor D. (Victor David), 1898-1991  Search this
Subject:
Clonney, James Goodwyn  Search this
Prendergast, Maurice Brazil  Search this
Hardy, Jeremiah Pearson  Search this
Copley, John Singleton  Search this
Engelhard, Charles W., Jr.  Search this
Frankenstein, Alfred V. (Alfred Victor)  Search this
Moran, Thomas  Search this
Berliner, Jacob  Search this
Medina, Leon  Search this
Heade, Martin Johnson  Search this
Grigaut, Hubert L.  Search this
Lehman, Robert  Search this
Hardy, Charlotte  Search this
Shinn, Everett  Search this
Sully, Thomas  Search this
Moran, Ruth B.  Search this
Peale, Rembrandt  Search this
San Diego Arts Society  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Citation:
Victor D. Spark papers, circa 1830-1983, bulk 1930-1970. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Artists' studios -- Photographs  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Art, Modern -- 19th century -- United States  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art, American  Search this
Theme:
Art Gallery Records  Search this
Art Market  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)7451
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)209609
AAA_collcode_sparvict
Theme:
Art Gallery Records
Art Market
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_209609
Online Media:

Louis A. Holman papers and Holman's Print Shop records, ca. 1870-1977

Creator:
Holman, Louis A. (Louis Arthur), 1866-1939  Search this
Holman's Print Shop  Search this
Subject:
Cole, Timothy  Search this
Andrews, John  Search this
Datziel, John Sanderson  Search this
Heintzelman, Arthur William  Search this
Holman, Richard Bourne  Search this
Nash, Ray  Search this
Goodspeed's Book Shop  Search this
Citation:
Louis A. Holman papers and Holman's Print Shop records, ca. 1870-1977. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Prints, American  Search this
Wood-engraving  Search this
Prints -- Collectors and collecting -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Prints -- 19th century  Search this
Prints -- 20th century  Search this
Map printing  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Theme:
Art Gallery Records  Search this
Art Market  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8138
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)210309
AAA_collcode_holmloui
Theme:
Art Gallery Records
Art Market
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_210309

John White Alexander papers, 1775-1968, bulk 1870-1915

Creator:
Alexander, John White, 1856-1915  Search this
Subject:
Abbey, Edwin Austin  Search this
Alexander, Elizabeth A.  Search this
Carnegie, Andrew  Search this
Chase, William Merritt  Search this
La Farge, John  Search this
James, Henry  Search this
Levy, Florence N. (Florence Nightingale)  Search this
Remington, Frederic  Search this
Millet, Francis Davis  Search this
Stevenson, Robert Louis  Search this
Whistler, James McNeill  Search this
Gibson, Charles Dana  Search this
MacDowell Club of New York  Search this
Type:
Awards
Interviews
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Scrapbooks
Medals
Citation:
John White Alexander papers, 1775-1968, bulk 1870-1915. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Muralists -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Portrait painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Works of art  Search this
Portrait painting -- 20th century  Search this
Portrait painting -- 19th century  Search this
Illustrators -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Portrait painting, American  Search this
Theme:
Sketches & Sketchbooks  Search this
Lives of artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8637
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)210817
AAA_collcode_alexjohn
Theme:
Sketches & Sketchbooks
Lives of artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_210817
Online Media:

Pitts family papers, 1885-1958

Creator:
Pitts family  Search this
Subject:
Pitts, Lendall  Search this
Pitts, Elizabeth McCord  Search this
Pitts, James  Search this
Citation:
Pitts family papers, 1885-1958. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Theme:
Lives of artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8785
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)210968
AAA_collcode_pittpitt
Theme:
Lives of artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_210968

William Page and Page Family papers, 1815-1947, bulk 1843-1892

Creator:
Page, William, 1811-1885  Search this
Subject:
Page, William  Search this
Page, Sophia Stevens  Search this
Olmstead, Mary  Search this
Olmstead, Bertha  Search this
O'Donovan, William Rudolph  Search this
Lowell, James Russell  Search this
Hicks, Thomas  Search this
Fenton, Rueben  Search this
Cushman, Charlotte  Search this
Curtis, George William  Search this
Briggs, Charles F. (Charles Frederick)  Search this
Beecher, Thomas Kinnicut  Search this
Tilton, Theodore  Search this
Wilmarth, Lemuel Everett  Search this
Stark, William  Search this
Sumner, Charles  Search this
Scranton, William Walker  Search this
Shaw, Francis George  Search this
Beecher, Henry Ward  Search this
Phillips, Wendell  Search this
Garrison, William Lloyd  Search this
Perry, E. W. (Enoch Wood)  Search this
National Academy of Design (U.S.)  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Sketches
Poems
Drawings
Diaries
Citation:
William Page and Page Family papers, 1815-1947, bulk 1843-1892. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Works of art  Search this
Portrait painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Portrait painting -- 19th century -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Theme:
Diaries  Search this
Lives of artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8925
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211111
AAA_collcode_pagewill
Theme:
Diaries
Lives of artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211111
Online Media:

National Sculpture Society records, 1883-1962

Creator:
National Sculpture Society (U.S.)  Search this
Subject:
Bitter, Karl Theodore Francis  Search this
Ward, John Quincy Adams  Search this
New York Architectural League  Search this
Type:
Scrapbooks
Place:
New York N.Y. -- Photographs
Citation:
National Sculpture Society records, 1883-1962. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Art -- Societies, etc.  Search this
Sculpture, Modern -- 19th century -- United States  Search this
Sculpture, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
War memorials -- United States  Search this
Theme:
Art organizations  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9082
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211275
AAA_collcode_natiscul
Theme:
Art organizations
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211275

Vose Galleries of Boston records, circa 1876-1996, bulk 1920-1940

Creator:
Vose Galleries of Boston  Search this
Subject:
Vose, Robert Churchill  Search this
Hassam, Childe  Search this
Hoffman, Malvina  Search this
Jonniaux, Alfred  Search this
Ladd, Anna Coleman (sculptor)  Search this
Thayer, Abbott Handerson  Search this
Norton, William E.  Search this
Sargent, John Singer  Search this
Vose, Robert C. (Robert Churchill)  Search this
Arthur U. Newton Galleries  Search this
Ehrich Galleries (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Howard Young Galleries (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Jill Newhouse (Gallery)  Search this
M. Knoedler & Co.  Search this
Macbeth Gallery  Search this
Milch Galleries  Search this
Norton Gallery and School of Art  Search this
R.C. & N.M. Vose (Firm)  Search this
Robert C. Vose Galleries  Search this
Centennial Exhibition (1876 : Philadelphia, Pa.)  Search this
Type:
Video recordings
Manuscript
Citation:
Vose Galleries of Boston records, circa 1876-1996, bulk 1920-1940. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Artists -- United States -- Photographs  Search this
Picture frame industry -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Picture frames and framing  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Art, Modern -- 19th century -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Theme:
Art Gallery Records  Search this
Art Market  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9272
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211467
AAA_collcode_vosegall
Theme:
Art Gallery Records
Art Market
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211467
Online Media:

Russell, Xanthus, and Mary Smith family papers, 1793-1977, bulk 1826-1977

Creator:
Smith, family  Search this
Subject:
Smith, Xanthus  Search this
Smith, Russell  Search this
Smith, Mary Russell  Search this
Smith, Mary Priscilla  Search this
Type:
Sketchbooks
Writings
Scrapbooks
Tintypes
Drawings
Daguerreotypes
Ambrotypes
Photographs
Sketches
Citation:
Russell, Xanthus, and Mary Smith family papers, 1793-1977, bulk 1826-1977. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Works of art  Search this
Painting, Modern -- 19th century -- Pensylvania  Search this
Landscape painting  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Women painters  Search this
Theme:
Sketches & Sketchbooks  Search this
Lives of artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9434
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211632
AAA_collcode_smitfami
Theme:
Sketches & Sketchbooks
Lives of artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211632
Online Media:

Charles M. Kurtz papers, 1843-1990, bulk 1884-1909

Creator:
Kurtz, Charles M. (Charles McMeen), 1855-1909  Search this
Subject:
Kurtz, Julia Stephenson  Search this
Albright Art Gallery (Buffalo, N.Y.)  Search this
World's Columbian Exposition (1893 : Chicago, Ill.)  Search this
Louisiana Purchase Exposition (Location of meeting: Saint Louis, Mo.). Date of meeting or treaty signing: (1904 :.)  Search this
National Academy of Design (U.S.)  Search this
Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts  Search this
Southern Exposition (Location of meeting: (Louisville, Ky.).)  Search this
Type:
Diaries
Scrapbooks
Citation:
Charles M. Kurtz papers, 1843-1990, bulk 1884-1909. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Glasgow school of painting  Search this
Theme:
Diaries  Search this
Research and writing about art  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9530
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211729
AAA_collcode_kurtchar
Theme:
Diaries
Research and writing about art
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211729
Online Media:

Paul Wayland Bartlett papers, 1887-1925

Creator:
Bartlett, Paul Wayland, 1865-1925  Search this
Subject:
Lafayette, Marie Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert Du Motier, marquis de  Search this
McClellan, George Brinton  Search this
Ruckstull, F. W. (Fred Wellington)  Search this
Saint-Gaudens, Augustus  Search this
Pennell, Joseph  Search this
Ward, John Quincy Adams  Search this
Alexander, John White  Search this
Avery, Samuel Putnam  Search this
Bartlett, Truman Howe  Search this
Clark, William A. (William Andrews)  Search this
Elwell, F. Edwin (Frank Edwin)  Search this
Flannagan, John Bernard  Search this
French, Daniel Chester  Search this
Hartley, Jonathan Scott  Search this
La Farge, John  Search this
Loring, Charles Greely  Search this
MacMonnies, Frederick William  Search this
Pearce, Charles Sprague  Search this
Rodin, Auguste  Search this
American Art Association of Paris  Search this
American Club of Paris  Search this
International Society of Sculptors, Painters and Gravers  Search this
Gorham Company (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Exposition universelle de 1889 (Paris, France)  Search this
Exposition universelle internationale de 1900 (Paris, France)  Search this
Louisiana Purchase Exposition (Location of meeting: Saint Louis, Mo.). Date of meeting or treaty signing: (1904 :.)  Search this
Citation:
Paul Wayland Bartlett papers, 1887-1925. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Sculpture, American  Search this
Sculpture, Modern -- 19th century  Search this
Sculpture, Modern -- 20th century  Search this
Monuments -- France -- Paris  Search this
Monuments -- United States  Search this
Theme:
Lives of artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)6463
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)215619
AAA_collcode_bartpaulw
Theme:
Lives of artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_215619

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