Saturday, April 18, 2015

page 99 -- D.M. Ferry & Co.

updated 1 January 2016
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With colors like theses, who could resist ordering?!
Through the efforts of the Library of Congress and the Internet Archive, the complete contents of the above catalog is available online in full color.

Additional seed catalogs are available in the Smithsonian Library Collection. The Smithsonian's introduction to their collection explans the importance of seed catalogs, not just to gardeners and historians, but to designers and artists as well:
"The real gems of the collection date from 1830 to the 1930s and are both beautiful and important multidisciplinary historical documents. The seed trade catalogs document the history of the seed and agricultural implement business in the United States, as well as provide a history of botany and plant research such as the introduction of plant varieties into the United States. Additionally, the seed trade catalogs are a window into the history of graphic arts in advertising, and a social history, through the text and illustrations, showing changing fashions in flowers and vegetables."
The Oregon State University Libraries has an excellent history of seed catalogs in both Britain and America:
Highly recommended!
Their bibliography is excellent for those interested in doing further research. The Oregon pages discuss catalogs from their earliest inception to 1960.

Like color? Do a Google Image search for Victorian seed catalogs. Here's a sample of what you'll get:



For information on D.M. Ferry & Co., see page 137 of the Earl J. Arnold Advertising Card Collection.




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