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Catalogue & Buyer's Guide #57: Montgomery Ward Catalogue of 1895

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Catalogue & Buyer's Guide #57: Montgomery Ward Catalogue of 1895 Cover

ISBN13: 9780486223773
ISBN10: 0486223779
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Tea gowns, bleached damask, and yards of flannel and pillow-case lace, stereoscopes, books of gospel hymns and ballroom gems, the New Improved Singer Sewing Machine, side saddles, anti-freezing well pumps, Windsor Stoves, milk skimmers, straight-edged razors, high-button shoes, woven cane carpet beaters, spittoons, the Studebaker Road Cart, commodes and washstands, the "Fire Fly" single wheel hoe, cultivator, and plow combined, flat irons, and ice cream freezers. What man, woman, or child of the 1890s could resist these offerings of the Montgomery Ward catalogue, the one book that was read avidly, year after year, by millions of Americans on farms and in small towns across the nation?

The Montgomery Ward catalogue provides one of the few irrefutably accurate pictures of what life was "really like" in the gay nineties, for it described and illustrated almost anything that anybody could possibly need or want in the way of "store-bought" goods. In fact, in that pre-department store era, it was usually the only source for such goods. Imagine if Montgomery Ward had issued an illustrated catalogue in the days of Louis XIV, or Elizabeth I, or Charlemagne: what insights would we have into the daily life of the "common folk," the farmers and shopkeeper, housewives and schoolchildren . . . what sources of information for historians and scholars, collectors and dealers, what models for artists and designers.

In 1895, Montgomery Ward was the oldest, largest, and most representative mail-order house in the country. The brainchild of a former traveling salesman, it issued its first catalogue in 1872, a one-page listing of items. By 1895, the catalogue, reprinted here, had grown to 624 pages and listed some 25,000 items, almost all of them illustrated with live drawings. Montgomery Ward was by then a multi-million dollar business that profoundly affected the American economy; and since it reached the most isolated farms and backwoods cabins, its effect on American culture was almost as great. Now once again available, it is our truest, most unbiased record of the spirit of the 1890s.

An introduction on the history of the Montgomery Ward Company and its catalogue has been prepared especially for this edition by Boris Emmet, Ph.D. (Johns Hopkins), a foremost expert on retail merchandising. His monumental work Catalogues and Counters has long been recognized as a landmark in the study of American economic history.

Synopsis:

Tea gowns, yards of flannel and pillowcase lace, stereoscopes, the New Improved Singer Sewing Machine, milk skimmers, straight-edged razors, spittoons — some 25,000 items in all, most illustrated. "A priceless resource." — History in Review.

Synopsis:

Tea gowns, yards of flannel and pillowcase lace, stereoscopes, the New Improved Singer Sewing Machine, milk skimmers, straight-edged razors, spittoons — some 25,000 items in all, most illustrated. "A priceless resource." — History in Review.

Synopsis:

Tea gowns, yards of flannel and pillow-case lace, stereoscopes, the New Improved Singer Sewing Machine, milk skimmers, straight-edged razors, spittoons — some 25,000 items in all, most illustrated.

Synopsis:

< div> < div> Tea gowns, yards of flannel and pillow-case lace, stereoscopes, the New Improved Singer Sewing Machine, milk skimmers, straight-edged razors, spittoons & #8212; some 25,000 items in all, most illustrated.< /div> < /div>

Synopsis:

Before the Internet, Wal-Mart, and the shopping mall, there was Montgomery Ward.

"Our mail order methods meet many wants," wrote a poetic but anonymous copywriter on a page of the 1895 Montgomery WardandCo. catalogue. He had a gift for understatement. At its zenith from the 1880s to the 1940s, Montgomery Ward, like its cross-town Chicago rival, Sears, sold virtually everything the average American could think of or desire—and by mail. This was a revolution, and Ward's fired the first shot. To buy spittoons, books of gospel hymns, hat pins, rifles, wagons, violins, birdcages, or portable bathtubs, purchases that used to require many separate trips to specialist merchants, suddenly all the American shopper had to do was lick a stamp. This unabridged facsimile of the retail giant's 1895 catalogue showcases some 25,000 items, from the necessities of life (flour, shirts) to products whose time has passed (ear trumpets). It is an important resource for antiquaries, students of Americana, writers of historical fiction, and anyone who wants to know how much his great-grandfather paid for his suspenders. It is a true record of an era. 20,000 b/w illustrations.

About the Author

Montgomery WardandCo., founded in 1872, was the world's first mail-order goods business. The company once boasted more than 600 stores but since 2004 is exclusively an online retailer.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Magdalene, December 17, 2009 (view all comments by Magdalene)
Too many of what claim to be 'reproduction' catalogues today turn out to be a mishmash from different catalogues randomly thrown together, haphazardly abridged and printed on the cheapest newsprint they can find.

Fortunately this is *not* the case with this delightful _unabridged_ Dover edition of Montgomery Ward's 1895 Spring/Summer Catalogue and Buyer's Guide.

Printed on quality stock, it is as much a delight for the casual reader, as it is a formidable research tool for historical archivist, costume designer or antiques dealer. It gives all who read it a window through which each can peer back through the years and glimpse what life was like at the turn of the last century.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No

Product Details

ISBN:
9780486223773
Author:
Montgomery Ward and Company
Publisher:
Dover Publications
Author:
Montgomery Ward and Company
Author:
Montgomery Ward and Co.
Author:
Montgomery Ward &. Co
Author:
co
Author:
Montgomery Ward & Co.
Author:
&
Location:
New York :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Reference
Subject:
United States - General
Subject:
Reference - General
Subject:
Manufactures
Subject:
Catalogs
Subject:
Clip Art
Subject:
Mail-order business
Subject:
Commercial catalogs
Subject:
Manufactures -- Catalogs.
Subject:
Montgomery Ward
Subject:
1895 Montgomery Ward catalog
Subject:
Dover
Subject:
Antiques-General
Subject:
Americana
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Series:
Dover Pictorial Archive
Series Volume:
57
Publication Date:
19690831
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
648
Dimensions:
11 x 9 in

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Art » Clip Art
Arts and Entertainment » Art » Museums and Collections
History and Social Science » Politics » United States » Foreign Policy
Hobbies, Crafts, and Leisure » Antiques » American
Hobbies, Crafts, and Leisure » Antiques » General
Hobbies, Crafts, and Leisure » Crafts » Antiques General
Languages » ESL » General

Catalogue & Buyer's Guide #57: Montgomery Ward Catalogue of 1895 Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$17.50 In Stock
Product details 648 pages Dover Publications - English 9780486223773 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
Tea gowns, yards of flannel and pillowcase lace, stereoscopes, the New Improved Singer Sewing Machine, milk skimmers, straight-edged razors, spittoons — some 25,000 items in all, most illustrated. "A priceless resource." — History in Review.
"Synopsis" by ,
Tea gowns, yards of flannel and pillowcase lace, stereoscopes, the New Improved Singer Sewing Machine, milk skimmers, straight-edged razors, spittoons — some 25,000 items in all, most illustrated. "A priceless resource." — History in Review.
"Synopsis" by , Tea gowns, yards of flannel and pillow-case lace, stereoscopes, the New Improved Singer Sewing Machine, milk skimmers, straight-edged razors, spittoons — some 25,000 items in all, most illustrated.
"Synopsis" by , < div> < div> Tea gowns, yards of flannel and pillow-case lace, stereoscopes, the New Improved Singer Sewing Machine, milk skimmers, straight-edged razors, spittoons & #8212; some 25,000 items in all, most illustrated.< /div> < /div>
"Synopsis" by , Before the Internet, Wal-Mart, and the shopping mall, there was Montgomery Ward.

"Our mail order methods meet many wants," wrote a poetic but anonymous copywriter on a page of the 1895 Montgomery WardandCo. catalogue. He had a gift for understatement. At its zenith from the 1880s to the 1940s, Montgomery Ward, like its cross-town Chicago rival, Sears, sold virtually everything the average American could think of or desire—and by mail. This was a revolution, and Ward's fired the first shot. To buy spittoons, books of gospel hymns, hat pins, rifles, wagons, violins, birdcages, or portable bathtubs, purchases that used to require many separate trips to specialist merchants, suddenly all the American shopper had to do was lick a stamp. This unabridged facsimile of the retail giant's 1895 catalogue showcases some 25,000 items, from the necessities of life (flour, shirts) to products whose time has passed (ear trumpets). It is an important resource for antiquaries, students of Americana, writers of historical fiction, and anyone who wants to know how much his great-grandfather paid for his suspenders. It is a true record of an era. 20,000 b/w illustrations.

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