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Collection Guide
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Last (Jay T.) Collection of Fashion Prints and Ephemera
priJLC_FASH  
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Collection Overview
 
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Description
The Jay T. Last collection of fashion prints and ephemera contains approximately 7,500 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.
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.
Extent
74.07 Linear Feet (5 flat-file drawers, 52 binders, and 5 flat-boxes)
Restrictions
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.
Availability
Open for use by qualified researchers and by appointment. Please contact Reader Services at the Huntington Library for more information.