Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Victorian Trade Cards from Graham Drug Store

Reaching a peak of popularity in the late nineteenth century, Trade Cards were used to advertise products and services. Often the cards were distributed by the manufacturer, and the name of the local merchant selling their product was stamped on the card.
A trade card advertising Dr. D. Jayne’s Expectorant and Vermifuge features a little girl and a dog, with the message on the back assuring customers that the remedies of Dr. D. Jayne were safe to use.
The card which pictures two hunters let area residents know that W. A. Graham was happy to supply medicines to both English and German speaking customers.
Lydia E. Pinkham’s Vegetable Compound was one of the best selling patent medicines in American history. Graham Drug Store carried this popular remedy.The Graham family operated a drug store in Sandusky from 1845 until 1926. An article in the Sandusky Register of March 15, 1915 reported that W. A. Graham “was one of the best known and best prepared druggists in this part of the state.” W. A. Graham had taken over his father’s drugstore in Sandusky. The Graham Drug Store building is featured in the newly published Downtown Architectural Walking Tour of Sandusky, Ohio, which lists 1868 as the date the building was constructed. (Daly’s Pub now occupies the building at 102 Columbus Avenue.)

To learn more about Victorian Trade Cards, here are three excellent online exhibits:

Victorian Trade Card Exhibit, from Miami University Libraries

The 19th Century American Trade Card, from Harvard’s Baker Library

Emergence of Advertising in America, 1850-1920, from Duke University’s Digital Collections


Lori E said...

Thank you for the link. What an interesting site. I will have to poke around when I have more time. I absolutely love the vintage ad cards. What a treasure.
Thanks for your kind word on my site. I hope you come by often. Don't miss out on the giveaway.

weberj said...

Being the grand daughter of W. A. Graham, I may thrilled to see this information available on line. Thank you for sharing it.