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Tag: NMAH Library

Riding a Streetcar

Image of Combination Car from 1901 J. G. Brill Co. trade catalog entitled Patented Round Corner Seat-End Panel for Open Cars.
Combination Car of the Metropolitan Street Railway Company of New York

Imagine commuting to work on a streetcar like this one! Its open design made it easy to quickly load and off-load passengers, but the disadvantages were quickly felt during rainy weather. This trade catalog by J. G. Brill Co. describes how the patented round corner seat-end panel made open streetcars more pleasant to ride, even on rainy days.

Peerless: Cars from the Past

Front cover of Peerless Motor Cars 1910 trade catalog
Peerless Motor Car Co. trade catalog

Cars are part of our everyday lives. For many of us, it would be hard to imagine life without cars. So it’s not surprising to browse the Trade Literature Collection at the National Museum of American History Library and find catalogs by automobile manufacturers. Let’s take a look at one of these catalogs, a catalog describing the 1910 car models for Peerless Motor Car Co.

Twelfth Night Traditions: A Cake, a Bean, and a King

Twelfth Night decorations and directions for working with crepe paper from the 1923 Dennison's Christmas Book by Dennison Mfg. Co.Have you heard of a cake with a bean baked into it and the man who finds the bean becomes King for the night?  That is just one tradition associated with Twelfth Night, but there are many more customs and traditions for this holiday.  Several items mentioning Twelfth Night are located at the National Museum of American History Library, like the 1923 Dennison’s Christmas Book by Dennison Mfg. Co.

“Comfortable Corsets” Circa 1893

Worcester Corset Co. pamphlet for the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition

This post was written by Cathy Rae Smith who had a 2011-2012 Graduate Research Assistantship at the National Museum of American History Library.

“Style, Comfort, Economy” touted the full color exposition pamphlet for Royal Worcester WCC Corsets.  The 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago gave attendees an opportunity to see the leading products and advances of the time–including this company’s fully boned, tightly laced corsets described as offering “great FLEXIBILITY, always comfortable.”