Item #3895 [AMERICAN CHROMOLITHOGRAPHY]. [ARCHIVE OF 12 NURSERYMAN'S GUIDES]. Nurseryman's Guides.
[AMERICAN CHROMOLITHOGRAPHY]. [ARCHIVE OF 12 NURSERYMAN'S GUIDES].
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A "Cornucopia" of American Chromolithography

[AMERICAN CHROMOLITHOGRAPHY]. [ARCHIVE OF 12 NURSERYMAN'S GUIDES].

Rochester, NY: Rochester Lithographing Co., 1867-1936. Together 12 nurseryman's guides + one 1861 American pomology guide (see below). Very good. Item #3895

SIXTY YEARS OF ART IN THE SERVICE OF COMMERCE: AN EXCEPTIONAL COLLECTION OF 12 AMERICAN NURSERYMAN'S SEED CATALOGUES DEPICTING, IN VIBRANT COLOR-STENCILED CHROMOLITHOGRAPHS, FRUITS, TREES, AND FLOWERS. THESE WERE HEAVILY USED AS VEHICLES OF SALE BY PEDDLERS THROUGHOUT SMALL TOWN AMERICA.

"Nurserymen's plates were an American innovation. They were made by various methods, the most distinctive being painted in watercolors. In design and coloring, these plates were more akin to folk painting than to the commercial art of their time" (Charles von Ravenswaay, "Drawn and Colored from Nature," in Antiques Magazine, March 1983, pp. 594-599).

Vintage Nurseryman's Guides provide a "cornucopia" of American chromolithography at its apogee. Here are seed catalogues containing lovely chromos of American horticulture and floriculture, fruits and flowers, ornamental trees, shrubs, roses, and much more. Pride of place is given to the work of the Rochester Lithographing Co. and the J.W. Thompson Co. who designed, engraved and printed some of the most beautiful specimens of the genre. Mention must also be made of Vredenburg, Stecher, and Mensing & Stecher Lithographic Companies. Most plates have brief captions giving name of the plant and information on color, fragrance, taste, preferred growing season, and other particulars. Most of the chromos in our collection are preserved in extremely fresh state and MUST BE SEEN to be fully appreciated.

CONTENTS OF THE COLLECTION:

1. LARGE AND VERY EARLY NONCE VOLUME of 51 chromolithograph and stencil plates, plus 1 duplicate and 1 b/w. Condition issues throughout: staining, wrinkling, a few plates loose, some tears. Contemporary brown half morocco over brown buckram; upper cover with title-label "Colored Fruits and Flowers" with a former owner's name effaced; inside front cover in pencil are the names of Joseph H. Lent of Russellville (Chester County) PA, and John N. Thomas of Drumore (Lancaster County) PA. Herein are fruits, flowers, and trees; of particular interest are the plates by D.M. Dewey's series, colored from nature. which is dated ca. 1878-1887 by the University of Rochester Nurserymen's Color Plate Book Collection. Other lithographers are E.B. & E.C. Kellogg (datable by UR to ca. 1860-1870). There are lithographs by Max and L.N. Rosenthal; these names do not appear in the UR Nurserymen's Color Plate Book Collection. The composite-nature of the present volume reflects the standard method provincial American nurserymen conducted a good deal of their business, namely: to create a specimen book, through which current (or available) stock was depicted in bright colors; when the stock was exhausted or was changed, the plates could be excised and/or replaced with new ones, as here.

2. GORGEOUS FOLDING PRESENTATION DISPLAY. Fruit and Ornamental Folio. With 71 chromolithograph plates heightened in gum arabic. The plates are joined by ribbons to form a suite of upwards of six specimens, with two rows visible at one time. Bound accordion style in a folding black leather case. Printed by the J.W. Thompson Co. (ca. 1876-1891). There are some contemporary annotations in pencil giving price information. Excellent condition.

3. Elmer Sherwood, Odessa, NY (Nursery). Contemporary cloth embossed to suggest "alligator skin." With 76 chromolithographs on 38 leaves, printed by the United Litho & Printing Co., Rochester, ca. 1911-1936 (ut UR). Signs of use but otherwise in excellent condition.

4. Quaker Hill Nurseries, Newark (Wayne County), NY. Descriptive Plate-Book. Illustrations in Natural Colors. Process Color Printing Co., ca. 1920-1945 (ut UR). Original half-cloth over printed gray paper covers (somewhat worn). With 92 photogravures of plants and flowers in front of homes, also fruit specimens.

5. William C. Moore & Co. Newark (Wayne County), NY. Plate Book. Printed by the United Litho & Printing Co., Rochester, ca. 1911-1936 (ut UR). Original printed boards (worn), later black cloth spine. With 67 photogravures of plants and flowers in front of homes, also fruit specimens, most with full-page descriptive text on verso.

6. SEED PEDDLER'S TEN-PANEL FOLDING DISPLAY (43 x 56 cm. opened, 21.5 x 14 cm. folded). [Rochester, N.Y. Vredenburg & Co.; United Litho. & Printing Co., circa 1901-11]. Ten plates mounted on board, hinged and backed in black cloth. A catalogue of flower bulbs, issued by an unnamed nursery. Narcissus or Daffodils, Tulips, Crocus, Hyacinths, Six Superb Lilies and Iris Kaempferi or Japanese Iris are featured. As is often the case with chromolithographed nursery catalogues, the individual pages were printed at different times and by different printers, though Vredenburg and United Litho. had been rolled together into one by the time this catalogued was issued. Very light soil or edge wear to a few plates.

7. Fairview Nurseries, Geneva, NY. With 63 photogravures printed by Rochester Litho Co. of plants and flowers in front of homes, also fruit specimens, most with full-page descriptive text on verso. Black cloth (light soiling, spine somewhat worn).

8. WALLET BINDING WITH CLASP. B.L. Watrous, Des Moines, IA. South-West Edition. Cabinet Fruit and Flower Plates. Colored from Nature and Lithographed by Stecher Lithograph Co. Rochester. Contemporary roan wallet binding with original working buckle (sympathetically rebacked with new calf on spine and front flap). Title-page + 101 chromolithographs.

9. 10. M.H. Harman Company, Geneva, NY. Cabinet Fruit and Flower Plates. Colored from Nature and Lithographed by Stecher Lithograph Co. Rochester. Contemporary roan binding (spine and extremities worn). Title-page + 126 chromolithograph.

10. The Perry Hand Book of Choice New Fruits, Ornamentals, Roses, Shrubs, Hardy Perennials, Bulbs, Etc. Rochester, ca. 1900-1933 (ut UR). [1] f. (title), 95 ff. + 2 b/w plates. Contemporary green cloth (spine wrinkled, trifle edge wear, endpapers browned but the plates are immaculate). The copy at UR is described as having "96 pages" without elaboration. Their catalogue informs us: "The "Soleil d'Or" rose, described as "new," was introduced to the trade in 1900; Perry Nursery Company is not listed in the Rochester city directories after 1933.

11. [Unnamed Nursery]. Album of 91 chromolithographs by Stecher Lithograph Co. Rochester. Later flexible smooth calf, inner hinges exposed. Plates with some wear or light soiling.

12. Chase Nurseries, Geneva, NY. Composite volume of 131 chromolithographs, mostly unsigned, but with several plates by Mensing & Stecher of Rochester 1885, Armstrong & Co. of Boston, Chas. Hart New York + 1 b/w plate. Contemporary half roan over black cloth (edges worn).

ADDED:

13. John Warder, American Pomology: Apples. New York: Orange Judge, 1867. Thick 8vo. 744 pp. With 290 line drawings illustrating the text. Original publisher's brown cloth, front cover stamped in gilt with large apple, spine blocked and gilt (cloth on spine lightly faded, front endpaper renewed, trifle wear to foot of spine. Early ownership inscription on title dated in the year of publication. Of this first edition no other copy seems to be currently on the market.

Price: $12,500.00

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