This collection is primarily the work of one individual, Donald Harvey Sultner, known professionally as Donald Sultner-Welles (1914-1981). The collection forms a written and visual record of Sultner's family, life, and career from 1913-1980. Its major strength is Sultner's photographic documentation of the world during his travels, ca. 1950-1980. Work by other photographers and artists, correspondence, greeting cards, and contemporary memorabilia and ephemera are included, along with fewer than fifty examples of earlier materials, ca. 1790-1900, collected by Sultner.
The entire collection reflects Sultner's lifework and interests. Housed in boxes the collection is organized into eleven series: Personal Papers; Professional Papers; Lecture Materials; Biographical Materials; Transparencies; Photoprints; Photonegatives; Prints, Drawings, Mixed Media; Audio Tapes; Miscellaneous; and Steve Eyster Addenda. The arrangement within each series is based as closely as possi-ble on Sultner's own organization of the materials. However, in several instances similar materials were found separated and have been placed together. In addition, obvious filing mistakes and spelling errors have been corrected. The spelling of geographic place names is based on Official Standard Names prepared by the U.S. Board on Geographic Names, Office of Geography, U.S. Department of the Interior. Not all names given by Sultner were found in the gazetteers, so there may be errors.
The bulk of the collection consists of 2-1/4-inch by 2-1/4-inch color transparencies (Series 5). However, the manuscript materials (Series 1-4) provide a detailed complement to the transparencies. For example, from the mid-1950s until the late 1970s, Sultner kept a travel diary (Se-ries 1). Written on the backs of postcards, this stream-of-consciousness journal reflects not only his daily trips, but his impressions of the countries and thoughts on his photography. A juxtaposition of cards with images is especially useful in understanding what Sultner photographed as well as why and how he photographed it. Sultner's professional corre-spondence (Series 2) documents the various types of groups before which he performed and equipment manufacturers dealt with for cameras, projectors, and so on. Notes, drafts, and final lectures (Series 3) present the performance side of Sultner. This material, when viewed with tapes of concerts and slides, begins to recreate the photo-concert as Sultner presented it. Scrapbooks (Series 4), kept by Sultner from the 1940s to the 1980s, present Sultner's life and career in chronological fashion.
The transparency portion of the collection (Series 5), containing over 87,000 images, is especially rich because of its documentation of the countries of the world. People are seen at their daily tasks, such as washing clothes, marketing, shopping, and eating. Cities are documented as they changed over the years. Two areas in particular will be of spe-cial interest to European and Asian researchers. The first is Sultner's USIS Asian tour in 1959. He visited Japan, Java, India, Korea, the Phil-ippines, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. The serene, prewar cities and coun-tryside of Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam evince nothing of the devastation to come in the 1960a and 70s.
The second area of interest is Sultner's passion for documenting archi-tecture. As a guest of the German government in 1954, Sultner documented the devastation of World War II and photographed both the reconstruction of bombed buildings and the construction of buildings reflecting "new" postwar architectural styles. In addition to photographing post-WW II styles, throughout his career Sultner documented Palladian, baroque and Rococo architecture. This interest manifested itself in several of his lectures.
A third subject area of interest to Sultner was gardens. Among his first lectures following his USIS tour was "Gardens of the World." Sultner de-veloped this theme into an ongoing commitment to ecology, culminating in a filmstrip, "The Time is Now" (Series 10), prepared for the Hudson River Conservation Society in the 1960s. Carl Carmer, a noted author, wrote the text for the filmstrip. Sultner's taped interviews, lectures, and program music (Series 9) complement the transparencies. During his USIS-sponsored Asian tour in 1959, Sultner recorded impressions of his trip on tape. Interviews with people living in the countries he visited, radio interviews, and his own personal reflections are included. Of particular interest are his "No Harm Asking" interviews in Manila (tape #2), his interview of two French hotel managers in Saigon discussing post-French control conditions (tape #9), and--perhaps the most unusual--his discussion with Erna Hanfstaengl about her personal relationship with Adolf Hitler (tape #107). Scripts for lectures (Series 3) round out the documentation of Sultner's profes-sional work.
Because of the arrangement of the transparencies, it is necessary to check several areas for the same subject. For example, Vietnam images are in the "World" section alphabetically under Vietnam (box 81). Sult-ner also lectured on Vietnam, so there are Vietnamese images in the "framed subjects" (Boxes 137-138). Another example, perhaps more compli-cated, but more common to Sultner, was his distinguishing between images of unidentified "People" and identified "Portraits." Transparency stud ies of human beings will be found under the subseries "People." "Subjects --Portraits," various countries in the subseries "World," and "Lectures." There are also individuals in the black-and-white photoprints (Series 6), and photonegatives (Series 8). The painter and print-maker Charles Shee-ler appears in a number of locations, as does tenor Roland Hayes. Another area of complexity with regard to people concerns the transparencies and negatives. Sultner interfiled his transparencies and negatives of iden-tified individuals. For appropriate storage, these two different formats have been arranged in separate series. Therefore, instead of container lists for the two series, there is a combined alphabetical index to both (pp. 166-206).
Of tangential interest are the photoprints (Series 6), etchings, wood-cuts, and other prints (Series 8) collected by Sultner. One particular subseries of interest contains photographs presented to Sultner by Asian photographers during his 1959 tour. Over 45 images were given to Sultner and represent the standards of camera-club photography in the 1950s. Thesecond subseries consists of over 25 prints by the Italian-American art-ist Luigi Lucioni (1900- ). For further information on this artist,see The Etchings of Luigi Lucioni, -A Catalogue Raisonne', by Stuart P.Embury (Washington, 1984). Lucioni also painted Sultner's portrait in1952 and the "People" section of the transparencies contains a number of images of Lucioni at work. Another significant category is the Japanese prints, including two by a major nineteenth-century artist, Ando Hiro-shige (1797-1858).
The collection is arranged into eleven series.
Series 1: Personal Papers, 1923-1981
Series 2: Professional Papers, 1954-1980
Series 3: Lecture Materials, 1952-1980
Series 4: Biographical Materials, 1954-1980
Series 5: Transparencies, 1947-1980
Series 6: Photoprints, 1913-ca. 1980
Series 7: Photonegatives, 1929-1981
Series 8: Prints, Drawings, Mixed Media, ca. 1790-1979
Series 9: Audio Tapes, 1947-1980
Series 10: Miscellaneous, 1947-1980
Series 11: Steve Eyster Addenda, 1937-1980
Biographical / Historical:
Donald Harvey Sultner was bom in York, Pennsylvania, on April 13, 1914, the son of Lillian May Arnold Sultner and Harvey A. Sultner. In 1923 Sultner attended the Lewis Institute in Detroit, Michigan, to overcome a speech impediment. He entered the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1932 and graduated in 1936. Sultner studied merchandising and sang in the glee club, then under the direction of composer Harl MacDonald. Sultner, a baritone, continued his interest in music and studied voice with Reinald Werrenrath and with Florence Benedict and Bruce Benjamin in New York City. In the late 1940s and early 1950s he appeared in concert with accompanists at schools, clubs, and resort hotels along the East Coast.
It appears that photography was always an important part of Sultner's life. Using a small format (120) camera, he recorded his vacation travels around the United States and Canada, parties, and his family. While living in New York, Sultner continued photographing friends and family and began photographing the famous people he encountered on his concert tours. In the early 1950s he began taking 2-1/4-inch by 2-1/4-inch color transparencies (slides) of landscapes and architecture as he traveled giving concerts.
Sultner, who had taken the stage name of "Sultner-Welles," began what was to be his lifework as a professional "photo-lecturer" in 1952. He illustrated his talks on nature, art, architecture, and the environment with his color slides. In 1954 Sultner toured West Germany as a guest of the Bonn government, and in 1959 he lectured in Asia under the auspices of the U.S. State Department. He was dubbed the "camera ambassador." Constantly adding new material to his collection of slides, Sultner traveled extensively throughout the United States, speaking before garden clubs, cultural organi-zations, and schools. He also appeared aboard various ships of the Holland-America line during a number of cruises abroad.
Sultner had established his performance style by the early 1960s. He expanded his lectures to include a combination of art, words, and music. The expanded presentation resulted in the "photo-concert," a unique synthesis of light and sound that Sultner frequently per-formed with a symphony orchestra. The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra commissioned "Concertino for Camera and Orchestra" by Eric Knight with Sultner in mind. The world premiere was in Baltimore in March 1979. While he spoke on many art, garden, and architectural topics, Sultner specialized in subjects relating to the baroque and rococo periods and Palladian architecture.
Sultner died of cancer in York, Pennsylvania, on March 25, 1981, at the age of 67.
1914 -- April 13, born York, Pennsylvania.
1929 -- In Detroit at Lewis Institute to overcome a speech impediment.
1932 -- To University of Pennsylvania.
1935 -- Summer trip to Roanoke (VA), Picketts, Hershey (PA); fall trip to New England for fraternity (AXP) convention.
1936 -- Spring glee club trip; graduated from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania; summer trips to Newport News (VA), northern trip to Canada, Picketts (PA).
1937 -- Fall trip to Williamsburg (VA), Duke University (NC); Sultner family begins building "Glen Hill" (Dover, PA).
1938 -- Summer at home, and Picketts (PA), Camp Pratt.
1939 -- Spring trip to Washington, D.C.; September trip to The Homestead (WV), Hot Springs (WV), Virginia; Lake Mohonk (NY).
1940 -- Summer trip to New Orleans, Blowing Rock (NC); winter trip to Skytop Club (NY); fall trip to Atlantic City (NJ), Philadelphia (PA), Annapolis (MD).
1941 -- Winter 1941-42 appearance in "Hit the Deck." Lake Mohonk (NY) with Ted Walstrum (Sept. 22-23); Skytop Club (NY) (February); summer trip to Canada, Lake Chazy (NY) (Aug. 17-23).
1942 -- Spring in Atlantic City (NJ); summer to Buck Hill Falls, Lakes Chazy and Mohonk.
1943 -- Summer trip to Mohonk (NY).
1944 -- Summer: To Toronto (Ontario), Muskoka Lake, Bigwin Island, Montreal (Quebec), Mohonk (NY).
1946 -- To Mohonk (NY), Ogunquit (ME), Old Saybrook (CT), Nantucket (RI).
1947 -- Singing tour of Canada and New England; winter-spring tour to Georgia and Florida.
1948 -- To Florida and Nassau, Feb.-Mar., Vermont, July-Aug.; Nassau-Havana-Miami-Bermuda, October.
1949 -- Singing tour of North and South Carolina.
1950 -- Summer trip to South.
1951 -- To District of Columbia, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, [New Jersey?], New York, Vermont.
1952 -- January 9: first public photo-concert, Pennsylvania Academy of the Arts, Philadelphia; trips to Connecticut, Florida, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont.
1953 -- To Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Vermont.
1954 -- Guest of German government for a study tour in the fall. To District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia.
1955 -- To Holland; Connecticut, District of Columbia, Florida, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia.
1956 -- To California, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia.
1957 -- Holland-America Cruise to Germany, Austria, Italy. To Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia.
1958 -- Holland-America Cruises to Germany, Austria, Holland, Italy, Switzerland. To Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, Minnesota., Missouri, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, Wisconsin.
1959 -- United States Information Service (USIS)-sponsored tour of Asia: Burma, Cambodia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Laos, Malaya, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, Vietnam. Also visited Austria, Czechoslovakia, Germany, Greece, Iran, Italy, Spain; Alaska, California, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania.
1960 -- Holland-America Cruise to Austria, Belgium, Caribbean, France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Morocco. To Arizona, California, Florida, Indiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin.
1961 -- To Canada, France, Germany, Switzerland; Alabama, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode.Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin.
1962 -- Portfolio, "Autumn in Vermont," with introduction by Carl Carmer, published in Autumn issue of Vermont Life. Holland-America Cruise to Denmark, England, France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Sweden. To Connecticut, District of Columbia, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia.
1963 -- Holland-America Cruise to Caribbean, Canada, Sweden, Thailand. To Alabama, California, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, N;w York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington.
1964 -- Holland-America Cruise to Germany, Canada, England, Holland, Wales. To Delaware, District of Columbia, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia.
1965 -- Holland-America Cruise to Austria, Czechoslovakia, France, Germany, Holland, Portugal, Wales. To Arkansas, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Indiana, Kentucky, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia.
1966 -- Holland-America Cruise to Caribbean, Germany, France, Holland, Italy, Portugal, Switzerland. To New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia.
1967 -- Holland-America Cruise to Caribbean, Austria, Denmark, England, Germany, Holland, Italy, Portugal, Sweden, Wales. To Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia.
1968 -- To Germany; Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia.
1969 -- To England, France, Germany, Holland, Switzerland; Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia.
1970 -- Holland-America Cruise to Caribbean, Denmark, Iceland, Sweden. To Alabama, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia.
1971 -- Holland-America Cruise to Caribbean, Canada, Denmark, Italy, Portugal, Sweden. To Alabama, Georgia, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania.
1972 -- Holland-America Cruise to Asia, Pacific, Caribbean, Africa, Austria, Italy, Japan, Thailand, Turkey. To California, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia.
1973 -- Holland-America Cruise to Austria, Denmark, Germany, Holland, Iceland, Sweden. To California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont.
1974 -- To Germany, Switzerland; California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia.
1975 -- To Austria; California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia.
1976 -- To Canada; Connecticut, District of Columbia, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah.
1977 -- To Canada, Germany; New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia.
1978 -- To Scotland; Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina.
1979 -- To England; Florida.
1980 -- To Florida.
1981 -- March 25: Sultner dies of cancer, York, Pennsylania.
The Donald H. Sultner-Welles Collection, ca. 1790-1981, came to the National Museum of American History in 1982 from the estate of Mr. Sultner. The collection was created by Sultner over his adult life and represents one of the most extensive collections of color transparencies created by one individual and held in a public repository. Sultner's emphasis was on world culture. He took the majority of his photographs in the eastern United States, western Europe, and Asia. Gardens, architecture, and people are the three major subject areas represented in the collection. Of additional interest are Sultner's taped impressions of his 1959 United States Information Service (USIS)-sponsored Asian tour. The collection occupies 309 boxes and covers more than 83 cubic feet.
The Donald H. Sultner-Welles Collection is open to researchers in the Archives Center, third floor east, of the National Museum of American History, between 12th and 14th Streets, on Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20560. The Archives Center is open Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Written and telephone (202/357-3270) inquiries are welcome and researchers are encouraged to contact the Archives Center before their arrival. The FAX number is 202/786-2453.
This is the eleventh in a series of occasional guides to collections in the Archives Center. Finding aids to other collections are available. The Guide to Manuscript Collections in the National Museum of History and Technology (1978) and an updated compilation contain brief descriptions of all archival holdings in the Museum. All current Archives Center holdings are available for search on the Smithsonian Institution Bibliographic Information System (SIBIS), an online database.
Collection is open for research but a portion of the collection is stored off-site and special arrangements must be made to work with it. Contact the Archives Center for information at email@example.com or 202-633-3270.
A small number of letters and photographs are restricted until the year 2031. Identification list in box.
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.
National Museum of American History (U.S.). Division of Community Life Search this
5 Cubic feet (22 boxes)
Panama Canal (Panama)
Collection documents Sims's activities as a traveler and his interest in historic restoration. It includes forty-one notebooks, 6,000 color slides, a smaller number of photographic prints, forty-one stereo view cards, and three boxes of personal papers and ephemera. While some images are personal, the majority form a documentary record of various subjects and places and provide biographical information on Sims.
Scope and Contents:
These papers document Sims's activities as a traveler and his interest in historic restoration. They consist of forty-one notebooks, Series 1-4; and three boxes, Series 5-9, of personal papers and ephemera. Series 5-7 are particularly valuable for biographical information. Series 10 includes 6,000 color slides, a smaller number of photographic prints, and forty-one stereo view cards. The total volume of the collection is approximately eleven linear feet.
The notebooks cover the years 1896, 1908-1913, 1918, and 1934-1976. The notebooks are written in a documentary styles that is enhanced by literary touches and perceptive details. The subjects include visits to several national parks, the Boronda adobe, and travel on most continents.
The 6,000 35mm slides that Sims took between 1944 and 1976 portray the use of the automobile in travel, national and international touring, and family travel. They are organized by either trip or location. They document his collecting, research, and restoration interests, and complement his written and artistic work. In technique, Sims's photographs are at least a cut above amateur photography. The slides remain in the order in which the Archives Center received them. In some cases they are organized, captioned, and numbered as a slide program. In other cases, while they are captioned they are not part of a specific slide program that Sims organized. Usually the identification in the Detailed Container List represents Sims' s own captions, which have been copied from the slide sleeves.
While some images are personal, the majority form a documentary record of various subjects and places. All the slides are dated and labeled or captioned, either on box inserts or on the slides themselves. The slides are generally organized by trip. Of particular interest is the documentation of Sims's restoration of the Boronda adobe. These slides are well captioned and show the step by step process.
The slides include many early Kodachromes from the 1940s in excellent condition. These represent the few examples of this type in the Museum. Although these slides are not extraordinarily rare, they are a very early example of the color process.
There are also black and white prints and a few color prints. Some of these document an automobile trip along the California coast in the 1930s. All the black-and-white prints portray the photographer for Sims's concern to document his travels adequately and in a meaningful way.
The three document boxes of supplemental material includes articles, correspondence (for example, a letter to Sims from the Henry Ford Museum thanking him for donating an oral history of a motoring trip he had taken), business cards, certificates of achievement, hotel ephemera, news clippings (Series 12), published travel accounts, printed travel brochures, and audio tapes (Series 11), in which Sims recounts many of his trips over the years. This material is valuable because it provides biographical information on Sims. It also may be useful for exhibits and research. Much of the material—the hotel ephemera and the printed travel brochures and accounts—is similar to ephemera in the Warshaw Collection.
Sims's photographs are similar in content to two other collections in the Archives Center. The Clyde W. Stauffer Family Photographic Album portrays family automobile trips across the United States between 1935 and 1940. The Donald Sultner Welles Collection of travel slides documents locations throughout the United States and around the world.
The collection is divided into 12 series.
Series 1:Notebooks, 1896-1975
Series 2: Political Notes, 1964-1976
Series 3: Comments on Vietnam, 1954-1975
Series 4: Moon Landings, 1969-1976
Series 5: Scrapbooks, 1896-1981, undated
Series 6: Correspondence, 1920-1987
Series 7: Biography, 1911-1938
Series 8: Published Material, 1927-1966
Series 9: Artifacts, 1913-1937
Series 10: Photographs, circa 1936-1962
Series 11: Audio Materials
Series 12: Newsclippings, undated
In 1946 George W. Sims purchased the old Boronda adobe in the Carmel Valley of California, and over the next ten years he restored it.
The Boronda adobe was built above the Carmel River in 1832 by José Manuel Boronda on his 7,000 acre Rancho de Los Laureles land grant. José was the son of Don Manuel Boronda, the first schoolteacher in California. José was married to Juana Cota of Santa Barbara. The sixty-four foot long house has adobe walls twenty-seven inches thick and hand-hewn redwood beams. Senor and Senora Boronda lived there with their fifteen children. It was in this house that Senora Boronda reputedly made a new cheese much liked by her neighbors and today known as Monterey Jack cheese. She eventually produced enough to sell to the surrounding community.
The Boronda family sold the ranch and adobe to Nathan W. Spaulding in the late 1860s or early 1870s. He was a mayor of Oakland, California. The next owner was the Pacific Improvement Company in the early 1880s, the forerunner of Del Monte Properties Company. A small cheese factory was built to commercialize the product under the name "Monterey Jack." Nevertheless, the adobe eventually became abandoned as a house. Before Sims purchased it the adobe was used as a shelter for dairy cows.
Sims plastered the outside walls to protect the soft adobe bricks and whitewashed the interior walls. The original dirt floor was covered with a floor of two-inch clear, heart redwood, random planks. It slopes downhill as does the roof of the house. The entire house follows the topography of the site. Sims left several cables stretching across the crudely raftered ceiling to support the walls.
Sims reroofed the house with one hundred year old roof tiles from the old Vasquez adobe in Monterey, California. He also constructed a workshop on the cement foundation of the old cheese factory and milk barn, added a carport, and built a fence protected patio of the Mexican type, adjacent to a Spanish garden with gravel paths. The patio walls were made of adobe created from Carmel Valley soil.
The first floor of the adobe consists of a long living room, a kitchen, a bedroom, and a bath. An inside staircase was added and leads to the second floor living room, two bedrooms, and a bath. All of the rooms on the main floor are on a different level. The kitchen at one end of the house is thought to date to the 1790s when the land belonged to the Carmel Mission.
Biographical / Historical:
George W. Sims (1896-1986) was a tax lawyer, certified public accountant, world traveler, and collector of pre-Columbian objects. He spent his childhood in Fairfax County, Virginia. At age seventeen he began the study of law at the Washington College of Law (now American University), and worked at night as a telephone company traffic manager. He was employed as a clerk in the Panama Canal Zone by the Panama Railroad Company, Commissary Branch, from 1915-1916. Sims left Washington, DC, because he needed money for school and received a better salary in Latin America. "The pay was 25% higher there [Panama] than in the U.S.A., because the risks of Yellow Fever were great, and work and living conditions less satisfactory than at home." (Box 8, folder 6) This was the first of his many trips to other countries. He then returned to Washington and graduated from law school.
Between 1918-1919 he served as sergeant first class in the aviation section of the Signal Corps. He was stationed for a time at the Vichy (France) Hospital Center, a part of the United States Base Army Hospital, No. 115. After the war Sims did graduate work in accounting at Benjamin Franklin University in the District of Columbia, studying at night. During the day he worked in the Navy Department's communications section.
In 1919 Sims and a few friends traveled west on one of the early automobile trips across the United States. In July he visited Fresno, California. He returned that same year to Washington, DC, and "made plans for making the West (and Fresno) his permanent home." In January, 1924, Sims returned with his wife to fulfill those plans and thus began his long time love affair with the West and California." (Scrapbooks: Vol. 38, Box 8, folder 2)
After his first wife Katherine died in 1946, Sims spent much time on world cruises. His destinations included North, South, and Central America, Eastern and Western Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific Islands. Between 1946 and 1956 he also purchased and restored the 1832 Boronda adobe in Carmel, California.
Sims married Emma Marenchin Sims on her birthday November 2, 1971 in Santa Barbara, California. Prior to her marriage Mrs. Sims (1914-? ) worked in the public health field after graduating from Western Reserve University in Cleveland. She remarked, "My world opened up when I married George." Sims died in 1986.
Collection donated by George W. Sims, January 10, 1985.
Collection is open for research.
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.
The Marlboro Oral History and Documentation Project is the result of a two-year effort supported in part by a gift from Philip Morris, Inc. Sixty oral history interviews and a variety of television commercials, print advertising, promotional materials, packaging, and industry publications were gathered to document Marlboro cigarette advertising. The bulk of the collection focuses on the period between 1954 and 1986, and examines the "Marlboro man", "Settle Back" and "Marlboro Country" campaigns. The collection is a rich source of information for researchers interested in advertising and marketing history, issues of smoking and health, and the export of both tobacco and American cultural symbols abroad.
The core of the collection is a series of interviews conducted during 1985-1987 by Dr. Scott Ellsworth, an independent scholar and oral historian. The broad range of interviewees included executives of Philip Morris, advertising agency personnel from Leo Burnett, photographers, production staff, sales and marketing personnel, and Marlboro cowboys.
Twenty-seven interviews were conducted overseas, in Argentina, Brazil, the Dominican Republic, Hong Kong, Switzerland, and West Germany. Conducted primarily with Marlboro licensee and affiliate staff, the interviews focus on the marketing and advertising history of Marlboro in the six nations. These interviews and others conducted with executives of Philip Morris International in New York City also address the history of Marlboro advertising in Africa, the Middle East, China, Eastern Europe and elsewhere in Europe and Latin America.
The interviews cover events from the 1930s through the 1980s. They focus on the theory and development of Marlboro advertising, its content and creation, and its modifications over the years. The foreign interviews also discuss the structure of the local cigarette marketplace, marketing and advertising techniques, and the use and modification of Marlboro advertising for different cultures.
Finding aids to the oral histories include abstracts of each interview indicating the major topic discussed, a cumulative index to personal names and topics in the interviews, and brief biographical and scope notes.
Dthe collection is divided into seven series.
Series 1: Research Files, 1943-1987
Series 2, Interviewee Files, 1986
Series 3; Oral History Interviews, 1986
Series 4: Advertising Materials, 1926-1986
Series 5: Promotional items and packaging, 1926-1986
Series 6: Publications and Research Material, 1960-1988
Series 7: Travel Slides Generated by Project Team, 1926-1986
Biographical / Historical:
The history of Marlboro cigarettes offers insight into one of the great advertising and marketing success stories of the 20th century. Marlboro cigarettes were marketed from the Victorian era through the first half of this century as a women's cigarette, with tag-lines that aimed to appeal to female smokers, such as "Marlboro - Mild As May." In 1955, two transformations occurred which would affect both profitability and brand recognition: the addition of an integrated filter and the re-invention of the market through the debut of the "Marlboro Man" advertising campaign. The original Marlboro Man campaign featured close-up images of all kinds of men using the product -- the cowboy was one, along with lifeguards, sailors, drill sergeants, construction workers, gamblers and other types suggestive of a masculine spirit and rugged independence. By 1963, the "Marlboro Country" campaign began. This campaign focused on the cowboy and his symbolic canon: boots, hats, horses, and western landscapes. By the mid-1980s, Marlboro was the best-selling brand in the United States and the world, and the Marlboro cowboy was among the most widely recognized of American cultural symbols. Sold in over 180 nations, both the cigarettes and the ad campaign had become a global phenomena.
The collection was donated to the Archives Center by Philip Morris, Inc. in 1986.
The materials in the Marlboro Collection are made available for research according to the established practices and principles of the Archives Center and the National Museum of American History.
In making these materials available for research, the Smithsonian Institution makes no claims of ownership of the copyrights or related rights. All responsibility for infringement of legal authorship rights and or copyright is assumed by the user of the materials. In addition, the user indemnifies and holds harmless the Smithsonian Institution for all claims, actions, damages, judgments and expenses that may result from use of these materials.
In addition, the donor has imposed restrictions on reproduction or broadcast of collection materials by third parties. The reproduction or broadcast of print ads and television commercials in the collection is subject to prior written consent from: Nancy Lund, Vice President, Marketing,Philip Morris International, 120 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10017;(917) 663-5000