Jay T. Last Collection of Horticulture Prints and Ephemera: Finding Aid

Finding aid prepared by Charla DelaCuadra.
The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens.
Prints and Ephemera
The Huntington Library
1151 Oxford Road
San Marino, California 91108
Phone: (626) 405-2191
Email: reference@huntington.org
URL: http://www.huntington.org
© 2014
The Huntington Library. All rights reserved.


Overview of the Collection

Title: Jay T. Last Collection of Horticulture Prints and Ephemera
Dates (inclusive): 1840-1933
Bulk dates: 1865-1920
Collection Number: priJLC_HORT
Collector: Last, Jay T.
Extent: approximately 1,425 items
Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Prints and Ephemera
1151 Oxford Road
San Marino, California 91108
Phone: (626) 405-2191
Email: reference@huntington.org
URL: http://www.huntington.org
Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Prints and Ephemera
Huntington Library
1151 Oxford Road
San Marino, California 91108
Phone: 626-405-2191
Email: reference@huntington.org
URL: http://www.huntington.org
Abstract: The Jay T. Last Collection of Horticulture Prints and Ephemera contains approximately 1,425 printed items from 1840 to 1933, with the majority of material dating from 1865 to 1920. The collection consists of advertising prints and ephemera promoting businesses whose products and services relate to growing flowers, fruits, and vegetables. This includes the tools, equipment, and supplies used for planting and cultivating gardens, orchards, and lawns for commercial and noncommercial purposes by nurseries, florists, fruit growers, and home gardeners. Seed companies are most prominently represented.
Language: English.
Note:
Finding aid last updated on August 9, 2016.

Access

Open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, contact Reader Services.

Administrative Information

Publication Rights

The Huntington Library does not require that researchers request permission to quote from or publish images of this material, nor does it charge fees for such activities. The responsibility for identifying the copyright holder, if there is one, and obtaining necessary permissions rests with the researcher.

Preferred Citation

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

Provenance

This collection forms part of the Jay T. Last Collection of Graphic Arts 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 horticulture prints and ephemera was 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 200,000 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 Horticulture Prints and Ephemera contains approximately 1,425 printed items from 1840 to 1933, with the majority of material dating from 1865 to 1920. The collection consists of advertising prints and ephemera promoting businesses whose products and services relate to growing flowers, fruits, and vegetables. This includes the tools, equipment, and supplies used for planting and cultivating gardens, orchards, and lawns for commercial and noncommercial purposes by nurseries, florists, fruit growers, and home gardeners. Seed companies are most prominently represented.
Materials are arranged in two series: small-size items (11 x 14 inches or less) and large-size items (bigger than 11 x 14 inches). Small-size items are described broadly at the series level; large-size items and selected small-size items between 8 x 10 inches and 11 x 14 inches are fully inventoried, and all printers, artists, and publishers are indexed by name. The collection has more than 50 large-size items comprised mainly of lithographs and engravings, including seed advertisements, decorative floral prints, and promotional materials related to fruit, vegetable, and floral products. Small-size items in the collection number almost 1,400 items and are comprised mainly of trade cards, stationery, handbills, and seed packets from various businesses. Approximately 285 ephemeral items featuring images of anthropomorphic fruit, vegetables, flowers, and other plants are also contained here, even though the products they promote do not always relate to horticulture.
The collection's prints and ephemera are primarily promotional in nature and provide information about American fruit, vegetable, seed, and flower-related industries, as well as the evolution of advertising strategies employed by these businesses in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Materials in this collection also provide a perspective on American aesthetic sensibilities during this period, as many of these prints were offered as decorative items as well as advertisements. As graphic materials, the items offer evidence of printmaking techniques and trends, as well as information about 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

Arrangement

The collection is arranged in the following series and subseries:
  • Series I. Horticulture Prints and Ephemera (small size)
  • Series II. Horticulture Prints and Ephemera (large size)
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.
Business cards.
Chromolithographs.
Contracts.
Ephemera.
Ephemera -- United States -- 19th century.
Ephemera -- United States -- 20th century.
Engravings.
Handbills.
Intaglio prints.
Leaflets (printed works).
Letterheads.
Lithographs.
Postcards.
Printed ephemera.
Promotional materials.
Relief prints.
Stationery.
Tickets.
Trade cards.

Subjects

Advertising -- Agriculture.
Advertising -- Floral products.
Advertising -- Seeds.
Flowers -- Pictorial works.
Fruit -- Pictorial works.
Gardens -- Pictorial works.
Girls -- Pictorial works.
Men -- Pictorial works.
Trees -- Pictorial works.
Vases -- Pictorial works.
Vegetables -- Pictorial works.
Women -- Pictorial works.

Printer, Publisher, Artist Index

The following is a complete list of printers, publishers, and artists represented in the individually cataloged items in this collection.
Adolph Nolte & Co.
American Lithographic Co.
Baudot, L.
Beatty & Co., Lith.
Brett Lithographing Co.
C.F. Muntz & Co.
Calvert Lithographing Co. (Detroit, Mich.)
Clay & Richmond.
Clay, Cosack & Co.
Coffin, Haskell, 1878-1941.
Cosack & Clark.
Cosack & Co.
Crump Label Co.
Currier & Ives.
Dewey, D. M. (Dellon Marcus), 1819-1889.
Editorial Seix Barral.
Ensigns & Thayer.
Forbes Lithograph Manufacturing Company.
Frauenberger, George F.
Goffart, J. L.
Hirschberg, Alice, 1856-1930.
J. Ottman Lithographic Company.
Kellogg & Comstock.
Kratzer, E.
Krebs Lithographing Company.
Lehman & Bolton.
Lith. & Chromo Co.
Lockhart, W. (William J.)
Lunzer, A.
Mensing & Stecher.
Peters, G. W.
Rahn, Anton.
Richmond & Co.
Stecher Litho. Co.
Strobridge & Co. Lith.
W.F. Humphrey Press.
Wall, H. M.
Walton, J. (Artist)


Collection Contents

 

Series I. Horticulture Prints and Ephemera (small size) 1840-1933 (bulk 1870-1910)

Physical Description: approximately 1,375 items in 9 binders and 1 flat-top box

Scope and Content

This series contains approximately 1,375 small-size printed items that pertain to or portray imagery of horticulture in the United States from 1840 to 1933. The materials consist of advertising and promotional ephemera, illustrations, and business records related to horticultural industries. The horticulture-affiliated entities represented in this series include nurseries, florists, seed companies and lawn mower manufacturers. Item types include trade cards, catalogs, catalog covers, booklets, seed packets, price lists, and printed billheads and letterheads with and without manuscript text. The materials in this series either promote or are connected to horticulture-related products, services, or sponsoring businesses. Binder 1 is the exception, containing promotional ephemera featuring images of anthropomorphic fruits, vegetables, flowers, and other plants promoting hoticulture-affiliated businesses as well as companies in unrelated industries.

Arrangement

Items smaller than 8 x 10 inches are housed in binders. These items are grouped by business type and/or subject as indicated by the binder names, and are generally arranged alphabetically by merchant.
Items that are between 8 x 10 inches and 11 x 14 inches in size are individually sleeved and arranged numerically by call number in one box, and select items have been fully cataloged. These items are described in the following format:
  • Title of print. Date
  • Artist(s) (when known). Printer(s). Publisher(s).
Binder  1

Anthropomorphic Images (8 x 10 inches or smaller in size)

Physical Description: approximately 285 items
Binder  2

Mowers and Implements, A-Z by company (8 x 10 inches or smaller in size)

Physical Description: approximately 120 items
Binder  3

Seeds, Nurseries, and Florists, A-B by company (8 x 10 inches or smaller in size)

Physical Description: approximately 130 items
Binder  4

Seeds, Nurseries, and Florists, C by company (8 x 10 inches or smaller in size)

Physical Description: approximately 160 items
Binder  5

Seeds, Nurseries, and Florists, D-G by company (8 x 10 inches or smaller in size)

Physical Description: approximately 150 items
Binder  6

Seeds, Nurseries, and Florists, H-J by company (8 x 10 inches or smaller in size)

Physical Description: approximately 125 items
Binder  7

Seeds, Nurseries, and Florists, K-O by company (8 x 10 inches or smaller in size)

Physical Description: approximately 140 items
Binder  8

Seeds, Nurseries, and Florists, P-S by company (8 x 10 inches or smaller in size)

Physical Description: approximately 135 items
Binder  9

Seeds, Nurseries, and Florists, T-Z by company (8 x 10 inches or smaller in size)

Physical Description: approximately 110 items
Box  1

Horticulture Prints and Ephemera (between 8 x 10 inches and 11 x 14 inches in size)

Physical Description: approximately 20 items

Note

Select items in this box have been fully cataloged and are listed below.
 

 priJLC_HORT_001767  Shakers' dried green sweet corn. 1879-1882

Printers: Crump Label Co.
 

 priJLC_HORT_002471  Roses hare bell and sweet pea. 1848-1850

Printers: Kellogg & Comstock Publishers: Ensigns & Thayer
 

 priJLC_HORT_003546  The specimen book of fruits, flowers and ornamental trees. 1870s

Publishers: Dewey, D. M. (Dellon Marcus), 1819-1889
 

 priJLC_HORT_003547  Choice flower seeds from D. M. Ferry & Co, Detroit, Mich. after 1867

Printers: Calvert Lithographing Co. (Detroit, Mich.)
 

 priJLC_HORT_003549  J. Leverone & Co. wholesale fruit dealers Cincinnati, O. approximately 1880s

Printers: Richmond & Co.
 

 priJLC_HORT_003550  Wm. Henry Maule, Philadelphia, U.S.A. : A hard times fruit tree offer... after 1877

 

 priJLC_HORT_003557  Men wanted by Sears, Henry & Co., nurserymen, Geneva, N.Y. after 1869

Printers: W.F. Humphrey Press
 

Series II. Horticulture Prints and Ephemera (large size) approximately 1846-1921 (bulk 1865-1910)

Physical Description: 56 items

Scope and Content

This series contains over 50 large-size printed items related to horticulture in the United States from approximately 1846 to 1921, with the majority of items dating from 1865 to 1910. The series is comprised mainly of lithographed advertising and documentary prints depicting flowers, fruits, vegetables, and trees offered by various seed suppliers.
These materials consist of color-printed, hand-colored, and uncolored images that range in size from approximately 11 x 14 inches to 25 x 35 inches. Notable holdings include prints from seed merchants Briggs & Bro., Crosman Bros., and James Vick of Rochester, New York; D.M. Ferry & Co. of Detroit, Michigan; and Jerome B. Rice & Co. of Cambridge, New York.

Arrangement

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).
priJLC_HORT_002420

For 1891 Rice's novelties in vegetables. Marblehead mammoth cabbage. 1891

priJLC_HORT_002421

From A. M. Purdy editor of the Fruit Recorder & Cottage Gardener Rochester, N.Y. ©1876

priJLC_HORT_002422

The vase of flowers. ©1870

Printers: Currier & Ives Publishers: Currier & Ives
priJLC_HORT_002423

Bouquet of flowers from Briggs & Brother, seedsmen. Rochester, N.Y. 1871. 1871

Artists: Frauenberger, George F. Printers: Clay, Cosack & Co.
priJLC_HORT_002424

Briggs & Bro, seedsmen and florists. Rochester, N.Y. 1872. 1872

Artists: Lockhart, W. (William J.) Printers: C.F. Muntz & Co.
priJLC_HORT_002425

Crosman Bro’s. choice flower seeds Rochester, N.Y. 1879-1886

Printers: Clay & Richmond
priJLC_HORT_002426

Crosman Bro’s. Rochester N.Y. Choice flower seeds. after 1867

Printers: Calvert Lithographing Co. (Detroit, Mich.)
priJLC_HORT_002427

Crosman Bros. “Sowing the seed.” Seeds new crop Rochester, N.Y. after 1876

Printers: Forbes Lithograph Manufacturing Company
priJLC_HORT_002428

Crosman Bros’ southern fodder corn of superior quality. after 1887

Printers: Stecher Litho. Co.
priJLC_HORT_002429

Dunlap’s new flower seeds. 1886-1906

Printers: J. Ottman Lithographic Company
priJLC_HORT_002430

Dunlap’s Seeds : Good harvest from good seed. 1886-1906

Printers: J. Ottman Lithographic Company
priJLC_HORT_002431

D. M. Ferry & Co’s early snowball cauliflower. after 1867

Printers: Calvert Lithographing Co. (Detroit, Mich.)
priJLC_HORT_002432

Landreths’ handy cabinets. 1874-1889

Printers: Krebs Lithographing Company
priJLC_HORT_002433

Rice’s novelties in vegetables for 1891. 1891

priJLC_HORT_002434

Vick’s flower plate for 1871. 1871

Artists: Walton, J. (Artist) Rahn, Anton Printers: Adolph Nolte & Co.
priJLC_HORT_002435

James Vick importer & grower of vegetable & flower seeds. Rochester, N.Y. 1867-1871

Artists: Rahn, Anton Printers: Adolph Nolte & Co.
priJLC_HORT_002436

Briggs and Bro. seedsmen & florists, 1872. Rochester, N.Y. 1872

Printers: Clay, Cosack & Co.
priJLC_HORT_002437

Briggs & Bro's chromo for 1875. 1875

Printers: Lith. & Chromo Co.
priJLC_HORT_002438

Burpee's welcome oats. ©1883

priJLC_HORT_002439

D. M. Ferry and Co's celebrated seeds for sale here. after 1867

Printers: Calvert Lithographing Co. (Detroit, Mich.)
priJLC_HORT_002440

D. M. Ferry & Co's standard seeds. after 1867

Printers: Calvert Lithographing Co. (Detroit, Mich.)
priJLC_HORT_002441

D. M. Ferry & Co's standard seeds for sale here. ©1894

Printers: Calvert Lithographing Co. (Detroit, Mich.)
priJLC_HORT_002442

Reid's celebrated and popular flower seeds. 1880-1881

Printers: Cosack & Clark
priJLC_HORT_002443

The people's collection, as selected by, grown by, W. & T. Smith. after 1846

priJLC_HORT_002444

Vick's flower plate, for 1870. 1870

Printers: Adolph Nolte & Co.
priJLC_HORT_002445

Bulb chromo for 1872. 1872

Artists: Walton, J. (Artist) Printers: C.F. Muntz & Co.
priJLC_HORT_002446

Vick's flower plate for 1872. 1872

Printers: C.F. Muntz & Co.
priJLC_HORT_002447

Chrysanthemums. ©1886

Printers: Beatty & Co., Lith.
priJLC_HORT_002448

Gladiolus childsi. approximately 1893-1900

Artists: Kratzer, E. Printers: Wall, H. M.
priJLC_HORT_002449

Crosman Bro's. flower & vegetable seeds, Rochester, N.Y. for sale here. ©1873

Printers: Clay, Cosack & Co.
priJLC_HORT_002450

Crosman Bros. seeds Rochester, N.Y. 1879-1886

Printers: Clay & Richmond
priJLC_HORT_002451

D. M. Ferry & Co's turnip seeds. approximately 1880-1890

Printers: Calvert Lithographing Co. (Detroit, Mich.)
priJLC_HORT_002452

D. M. Ferry & Co.'s. standard seeds always reliable for sale here. approximately 1900-1910

Printers: Calvert Lithographing Co. (Detroit, Mich.)
priJLC_HORT_002453

"Nail this fact" : Ferry's seeds succeed. ©1901

Printers: American Lithographic Co.
priJLC_HORT_002454

D. M. Ferry & Co's flower seeds. ©1908

Printers: American Lithographic Co.
priJLC_HORT_002455

D. M. Ferry & Co's standard onion seeds. ©1911

Artists: Lunzer, A. Printers: American Lithographic Co.
priJLC_HORT_002456

Ferry's seeds mean good things on the table. ©1912

Artists: Peters, G. W.
priJLC_HORT_002457

Ferry's seeds. ©1916

priJLC_HORT_002458

Ferry's seeds for sale here. ©1917

priJLC_HORT_002459

Plant Ferry's seeds. ©1917

Artists: Coffin, Haskell, 1878-1941
priJLC_HORT_002460

Tomatoes! From Ferry's seeds. ©1917

priJLC_HORT_002461

Try Rice's seeds contended for, by all quarters of the globe : Cambridge Washington, Co. N.Y. 1880-1881

Printers: Cosack & Clark
priJLC_HORT_002462

Try Rice's seeds 99 in 100 warranted to head. 1878-1891

Printers: Cosack & Co.
priJLC_HORT_002463

Good news Rice's flower seeds just received! 1889-1895

Printers: Brett Lithographing Co.
priJLC_HORT_002464

"Make no mistake" buy Rice's popular flower seeds. 1886-1906

Printers: J. Ottman Lithographic Company
priJLC_HORT_002465

Rice's popular flower seeds are the best. 1886-1906

Printers: J. Ottman Lithographic Company
priJLC_HORT_002466

Rice's popular flower seeds. ©1895

Artists: Hirschberg, Alice, 1856-1930 Printers: J. Ottman Lithographic Company
priJLC_HORT_002467

Rice's seeds bring forth the bounty of the earth. ©1921

priJLC_HORT_002468

Famous Rochester seeds the best in the world. 1877-1887

Printers: Mensing & Stecher
priJLC_HORT_002469

Sachets illustrés en couleur. approximately 1900-1910

Printers: Goffart, J. L. Publishers: Baudot, L.
priJLC_HORT_002470

Semillas seleccionadas : Hijos de Nonell Barcelona. after 1911

Printers: Editorial Seix Barral
priJLC_HORT_002472

R. H. Shumway's illustrated garden guide. 1895 Rockford, Ill. 1895

Printers: Stecher Litho. Co.
priJLC_HORT_003538

Rochester seed store catalogue---1841. 1841

priJLC_HORT_003539

Compliments of A. M. Purdy, editor of Fruit Recorder & Cottage Gardener, Rochester, N.Y. ©1876

Printers: Strobridge & Co. Lith.
priJLC_HORT_003540

Dunlap's seeds : Nashua, N.H. : Good harvest from good seed. 1886-1906

Printers: J. Ottman Lithographic Company
priJLC_HORT_003558

Buist's warranted garden seeds. Philadelphia. after 1872

Printers: Lehman & Bolton