New Acquisition: Aviation Trade Cards and Stamps

We are pleased to share with you a first look at some of our most recent acquisitions — several sets of aviation-themed trade cards and stamps. Most of these colorful cards and stamps were packaged with products such as breakfast cereal or cigarettes and date from the 1920s-1940. These items represent an exciting and interesting look at how aviation related to popular culture.

Aviation trade stamp albums from Tydol, Skelly, and Heinz

Aviation trade stamp albums from Tydol, Skelly, and Heinz (click to enlarge)

Among the stamp albums included are: Modern Aviation and Famous Air Pilots, distributed in the 1930s by the H. G. Heinz Company (bottom row, above); Captain Midnight’s Air Heroes published by Sklly Petroleum Company in 1938 (upper right, above); and Tydol Flying: A Stamp Album of American Aviation distributed by Tydol Gasoline Company in 1940 (upper left, shown open, above).

Heinz aviation albums, showing stamps

Heinz aviation albums, showing stamps (click to enlarge)

Captain Midnight's A Tribute to Heroes of the Air album, by Skelly

Captain Midnight’s A Tribute to Heroes of the Air album, by Skelly (click to enlarge)

One grouping of trade cards originated in Stuttgart, Germany, and advertises Lahusen’s Jod-Eisen-Lebertran, or “iodine-iron-liver oil,” some form of proprietary tonic or “cure-all.”

Lahusen's trade cards

Lahusen’s trade cards (click to enlarge)

More than 200 of the trade cards were originally sold inside packages of cigarettes, from tobacco companies such as Brown & Williamson (Louisville, Ky.); Player’s (England); Gallaher (Great Britain & Ireland); Carrera’s (England); and Wills’s by Imperial (Great Britain & Ireland).

On the front of the card, an airplane or aviator (depending on the card series) is featured, and the back of the card features additional information about the person or plane featured on the front, as well as an advertisement for the tobacco company. In some cases, the information was printed in a bound album, to which the cards could be affixed (similarly to the above-mentioned stamp albums).

Album of Modern American Airplanes trade card album, by Wings cigarettes (ca. 1935)

Album of Modern American Airplanes trade card album, by Wings cigarettes (ca. 1935) (click to enlarge)

Front and back of a Wills's trade card (ca. 1935)

Front and back of a Wills’s trade card (ca. 1935) (click to enlarge)

Trade card featuring Orville Wright, from the Carrera's Famous Aviators trade card series

Trade card featuring Orville Wright, from the Carrera’s Famous Aviators trade card series

We hope to have these materials processed and ready for researchers soon!

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Archivist to Share a Genealogical Quilt Story on Jan. 29

"Tracing a Stitch through Time" with Lisa Rickey, Jan. 29, at 1:25 (click to enlarge)

“Tracing a Stitch through Time” with Lisa Rickey, Jan. 29, at 1:25 (click to enlarge)

Do you have an heirloom or antique item and wish you knew more about its creator or owner?  If the item is signed and dated, or if you at least know the name of the person rumored to be associated with it, you may be able to find out more—and an archives can help you!

One of our archivists, Lisa Rickey, will be sharing the story of one such research adventure this coming Friday, January 29, at the Wright State University Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies’ 3rd Annual Quilt Show Celebrating Quilt Stories.

In her presentation “Ida Grady’s Sunburst Quilt: Tracing a Stitch through Time,” Lisa will describe how she researched the creator of an heirloom quilt. Given just a few original clues at the beginning — a name and date on the quilt itself, along with a vague sense that the quilter may have been a relative — she used local history and genealogy research to discover how the mysterious Ida Grady was connected to her family.

Lisa will talk about some of the different types of historical records that were helpful and how the information contained in each one was applied to solving different pieces of the puzzle. Although Lisa’s research centered in another part of Ohio, the same kinds of local history and genealogy resources are also available to researchers here in Special Collections & Archives.

The antique quilt that started it all – “Sunburst” (1934) by Ida Grady – will be on display throughout the quilt show, as well as on hand during the presentation.

The presentation takes place on Friday, January 29, from 1:25 to 2:20 p.m. in 156C Student Union, Wright State University. The event is free, and the public is welcome. Visitor parking is available just outside the Student Union. To view the full schedule of speakers and activities for the multi-day quilt show & for more information, please visit the quilt show’s event page.

We hope to see you there!

(Although this is not officially part of our Archives Fridays presentation series, think of it as a “bonus” Archives Friday!)

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Join us for Archives Fridays: “Build It and They Will Come: The Story of Wright State” on Jan. 22

Please join us for this month’s “Archives Fridays” presentation:

Build It and They Will Come: The Story of Wright State
Friday, January 22
12-1 p.m.
Dunbar Library 315

Using photographs and documents from the University Archives, learn about the early development and growth of Wright State from a small branch campus in rural Bath Township to a major metropolitan state university.

This free event is open to anyone – faculty, staff, students, and the public. No advance registration is necessary. Attendees are welcome to bring their lunch.

This presentation is part of our “Archives Fridays” brown bag lunch series, which continues throughout the academic year. All sessions will be on Fridays and will be discuss an archives-related topic, hence the name: “Archives Fridays.” Each brown bag talk will start with a presentation by one of our archivists, and there will be time for questions and discussion afterwards.

For additional dates and topics, please see our blog post announcing the series or the University Libraries’ Special Collections & Archives event calendar.

We hope to see you there!

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