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Jay T. Last Collection of Fashion Prints and Ephemera: Finding Aid
priJLC_FASH  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Overview of the Collection
  • Access
  • Administrative Information
  • Scope and Content
  • Related materials in the Huntington Library
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Overview of the Collection

    Title: Jay T. Last Collection of Fashion Prints and Ephemera
    Dates (inclusive): approximately 1577-1943
    Bulk dates: 1825-1900
    Collection Number: priJLC_FASH
    Collector: Last, Jay T.
    Extent: approximately 6,900 items
    Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Prints and Ephemera
    1151 Oxford Road
    San Marino, California 91108
    Phone: 626-405-3473
    Email: lastcollection@huntington.org
    URL: http://www.huntington.org
    Abstract: The Jay T. Last Collection of Fashion Prints and Ephemera contains approximately 6,900 items dating from the 1570s to the 1940s, with the bulk of the items spanning from 1825 to 1900. This collection consists of fashion plates, advertising prints, broadsides, and promotional ephemera produced for clothiers and tailors, dry goods suppliers, garment manufacturers, fashion publications, and textile companies affiliated with the design, production, and/or sale of clothing, accessories, and dry goods. While most of the materials are American, there are also notable quantities of foreign items in the collection, including French fashion plates and foreign textile labels.
    Language: English and French
    Note:
    Finding aid last updated on March 20, 2014.

    Access

    The collection is open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, please visit the Huntington's website: www.huntington.org.  

    Administrative Information

    Publication Rights

    In order to quote from, publish, or reproduce any of the visual materials, researchers must obtain formal permission from the office of the Library Director. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Huntington as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.

    Preferred Citation

    [Item title, Call number]. Jay T. Last Collection of Fashion Prints and Ephemera, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

    Provenance

    This collection forms part of the Jay T. Last Collection of Lithographic and Social History, which was donated to the Huntington Library by Jay T. Last in 2005 as a gift in progress. The bulk of the Fashion Prints and Ephemera were transferred to the Library between 2010 and 2013.

    Background

    The Jay T. Last Collection is an unparalleled archive of printed paper artifacts that documents American lithographic, social, and business history. The collection began in the early 1970s when physicist and Silicon Valley pioneer Jay Last moved to Southern California and started collecting citrus box labels he found at local flea markets and rummage sales. As his collection grew, Last realized that these labels conveyed important information about commercial printing, graphic design, and social history, and he expanded his collection to include other forms of American visual culture. Today this collection contains more than 185,000 lithographic prints, posters, and ephemera of mostly nineteenth- and early twentieth- century American origin and represents works by more than five hundred lithographic companies.

    Scope and Content

    The Jay T. Last Collection of Fashion Prints and Ephemera contains approximately 6,900 items dating from the 1570s to the early 1900s, with the bulk of the items spanning from 1825 to 1900. This collection consists of fashion plates, advertising prints, broadsides, and promotional ephemera produced for clothiers and tailors, dry goods suppliers, garment manufacturers, fashion publications, and textile companies affiliated with the design, production, and/or sale of clothing, accessories, and dry goods. While most of the materials are American, there are also notable quantities of foreign items in the collection, including French fashion plates, fez labels in several languages, and foreign textile labels.
    Materials are broadly divided into two series: small-size items (11 x 14 inches or smaller) and large-size items (typically larger than 11 x 14 inches). This finding aid describes small materials broadly at the series level, with selected individual items digitized; large materials are fully inventoried and all printers, artists, and publishers are indexed. The collection includes 223 large-size items comprised mainly of lithographic advertising prints and fashion plates. Small-size items number approximately 6,650 and contain a variety of promotional materials including trade cards, calendars, booklets, product labels, fashion plates, periodicals, clippings, and printed billheads and letterheads with manuscript text. Each series is divided into subseries according to the kind of business, service, or trade sponsoring the advertisement. Types of businesses have been identified according to the principal type of product(s) manufactured or sold by the business. These subseries are arranged as follows: Accessories; Clothiers, Tailors, and Dry Goods; Fashion Plates And Periodicals; Footwear; Garments; Headwear; Sewing Supplies; and Textiles.
    This collection contains many American and European printed illustrations, commonly known as “fashion plates,” that typically depict men, women, or children modeling current clothing and dress styles. Small plates (usually 14 x 10 inches or less in this collection) illustrated the pages of magazines and bound volumes that were marketed specifically for women. Larger plates, primarily intended for display, advertised the products and services of fashion designers, tailors, and pattern makers.
    The collection provides a resource for studying clothing and dress, sales and merchandise, textiles, and sewing, as well as changing fashion trends in the United States and Europe in the 19th century. The images are primarily promotional in nature and provide information about the history of the American fashion, clothing, dry-goods, and textile industries and the evolution of their advertising strategies in the 19th and early 20th centuries. As graphic materials, the prints offer evidence of developing techniques and trends in printmaking, and of the artists, engravers, lithographers, printers, and publishers involved in the creative process.

    Alternative Form of Materials Available

    Visit the Huntington Digital Library: Jay T. Last Collection   to view digitized items from this collection.

    Related materials in the Huntington Library

    The Huntington Library Rare Books Collection contains one related item (Call number: 66643) that is listed in the "Related Materials" section in Series I, Subseries C in this finding aid.
    The Huntington Library Historical Prints Collection contains one related item (priHHC_FASH_0000014) that is listed in the "Related Materials" section at the beginning of Series II, Subseries B in this finding aid.

    Arrangement

    The collection is arranged in the following series and subseries:
    • Series I. Fashion Prints and Ephemera (small size)
      • Subseries A. Accessories (small size)
      • Subseries B. Clothiers, Tailors, and Dry Goods (small size)
      • Subseries C. Fashion Plates and Periodicals (small size)
      • Subseries D. Footwear (small size)
      • Subseries E. Garments (small size)
      • Subseries F. Headwear (small size)
      • Subseries G. Sewing Supplies (small size)
      • Subseries H. Textiles (small size)
    • Series II. Fashion Prints and Ephemera (large size)
      • Subseries A. Accessories (large size)
      • Subseries B. Clothiers, Tailors, and Dry Goods (large size)
      • Subseries C. Fashion Plates and Periodicals (large size)
      • Subseries D. Footwear (large size)
      • Subseries E. Garments (large size)
      • Subseries F. Headwear (large size)
      • Subseries G. Sewing Supplies (large size)
      • Subseries H. Textiles (large size)
    Within each subseries, items are arranged numerically by call number and described in the following format:
    • Title of print. Date
    • Artist(s) (when known). Printer(s). Publisher(s).

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Huntington Library's Online Catalog.  

    Genres

    Billheads.
    Broadsides.
    Business cards.
    Business records.
    Business records -- United States -- 19th century.
    Business records -- United States -- 20th century.
    Clippings.
    Ephemera.
    Engravings.
    Fashion plates.
    Fashion prints.
    Intaglio prints.
    Leaflets (printed works).
    Labels.
    Letterheads.
    Lithographs.
    Newspapers.
    Periodical illustrations.
    Periodicals.
    Printed ephemera.
    Promotional materials.
    Relief prints.
    Sample books.
    Samples.
    Textiles.
    Tradecards.
    Views.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Advertising -- Clothing and dress.
    Advertising -- Fashion.
    Children's clothing -- Pictorial works.
    Children's shoes -- Pictorial works.
    Clothing and dress -- Pictorial works.
    Clothing trade.
    Commerce -- Pictorial works.
    Corsets -- Pictorial works.
    Dress accessories -- Pictorial works.
    Dresses -- Pictorial works.
    Dressmaking -- Patterns
    Dry-goods.
    Fashion -- Pictorial works.
    Footwear.
    Fur garments -- Pictorial works.
    Hat trade.
    Hats -- Pictorial works.
    Manufacturing industries.
    Men's clothing -- Pictorial works.
    Military uniforms -- Pictorial works.
    Notions (Merchandise).
    Rubber industry and trade.
    Shoe industry.
    Shoes -- Pictorial works.
    Storefronts -- Pictorial works.
    Textiles.
    Thread.
    Umbrellas - Pictorial works.
    Women's clothing -- Pictorial works.

    Printer, Publisher, Artist Index

    The following is a complete list of printers, publishers, and artists represented in the large-size items in this collection.
    A. Brett & Co.
    A.E. Baker’s Lithog’hy.
    Ackermann, Emil F., 1840-
    Augte. Godchaux & Cie.
    B.W. Thayer & Co.
    Baillie, James S., fl. 1838-1855.
    Baker & Godwin.
    Baker, Godwin & Co.
    Baker, Joseph E., approximately 1837-1914.
    Beard, Albin, 1808-1862.
    Bonnard, J.
    Bufford, John Henry, 1810-1870.
    C.L. Crapper & Bro. Lith.
    Calvert Lithographing Co. (Detroit, Mich.)
    Cameron, John, approximately 1828-
    Capewell & Kimmel (Firm)
    Chanson (Engraver)
    Cosine, W. S.
    Crawford, C. G.
    Croker, H., Jr.
    Currier, Charles, 1818-1887.
    Deferneville, P.
    Desgrange, Isabelle.
    Dupuy (Printer)
    Duross Bros.
    Duval & Hunter.
    E. Wells Sackett & Rankin.
    Elite Styles Company.
    Elsas Paper Co.
    Endicott, George, 1802-1848.
    Esnault, A.
    Farwell, F. F.
    Feder, Joel.
    Ferd. Mayer & Sons.
    Forbes Lithograph Manufacturing Company.
    Fournier (Firm)
    Frazer & Denis.
    G.W. & W.H. Dobbins.
    Geddes Sons.
    Geo. H. Walker & Co.
    Gilquin Fils. Imp.
    Godchaux, Alp.
    Grant & Co.
    Graphic Company.
    Gray Lith. Co.
    Gray, L. (Lithographer)
    Harper & Brothers.
    Harris, George S.
    Hatch & Co.
    Heffron & Phelps.
    Heppenheimer & Maurer.
    Holland, A. (Printer)
    Imp. Falconer.
    Imp. Leroy.
    J. Ottman Lithographic Company.
    J.C. Kneeland & Co.
    J.H. Bufford's Lith.
    J.J. Little & Co.
    Julius Bien & Co.
    Ketterlinus Lithographic Manufacturing Company.
    King & Baird.
    Lindner, Eddy & Clauss.
    Major & Knapp Engraving, Manufacturing & Lithographic Co.
    Major, Knapp & Co.
    Mayer, Merkel & Ottmann.
    Mayes (Engraver)
    Men's Outfitter.
    Michelin, Francis, 1809 or 1810-1878.
    Moras, Ferdinand, 1821-1908.
    Morse, W.J. (Willis J.)
    New York Times Company.
    Noel, Laure, 1827-1878.
    O.H. Bailey & Co.
    Oliver, John Wise, 1815-1908.
    P.S. Duval & Co.
    Parker, Gray.
    Pictorial Advertising Co.
    Pictorial Printing Co.
    Rabouille, Charles.
    Rau, J., approximately 1821-
    Rease, W. H.
    Rogowski & Co.
    S.T. Taylor Co.
    Sackett & Wilhelms Litho. & Prt. Co.
    Sackett, Wilhelms & Betzig.
    Schuller, Jno.
    Seringe Freres (Firm)
    Shober & Carqueville.
    Stahl & Jaeger.
    Standard Print.
    Tappan & Bradford.
    Times Print (Cincinnati, Ohio)
    Toudouze, Anaïs Colin, 1822-1899.
    Valois, Ed.
    Van Ingen, William H., approximately 1831-
    W.H.H. Rogers & Co.
    Wagner & M'Guigan.
    Ward & Biddulph.
    Wex & Irish.