1900-1940 National Biscuit Company Product Advertisement Collection (21)

Sold For: $1,410

Auction Year: 2010 spring

Lot: 1588

Item Year: 1902

Category: Pop Culture/Americana

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This diverse collection of twenty-one National Biscuit Company advertising pieces is comprised of magazine inserts, in-store displays, office displays, and even a few advertising pieces issued by bakeries that later become part of the National Biscuit Company corporate family. All of these pieces, most of which date from the early 1900s, originate directly from the company's archives and, as such, remain in near-pristine condition (with just a few noted exceptions). Each piece has been either framed or matted and framed to slightly larger dimensions. (The largest frame measures 38 x 26 inches; the smallest 17 x 8 inches.) This is a uniquely interesting and rare assortment of turn-of-the-century advertising displays relating to one of the most well known brand names in the history of marketing and American business. The archives of the National Biscuit Company were sold by REA in 2007, and these extraordinary American advertising items have been consigned to this auction directly from the gentleman who purchased them at that auction. INSERTS: N.B.C. was one of the first companies to place color advertising in magazines. They did so by producing full-color lithographs, printed on cardboard sheets, which were then inserted into prominent national magazines such as Scribner's . Technically these are referred to as "inserts" and they were, literally, tipped or inserted in the magazine. Offered here are nine such magazine inserts, each measuring approximately 6.5 x 9 inches. Five of the inserts feature the company's famous trademark image, "The Uneeda Boy," three promote "Sugar Wafers," and the last advertises an assortment of Nabisco products. Each insert has been matted and framed to approximate dimensions of 10.5 x 14 inches. IN-STORE DISPLAYS: 1) 1918 die-cut holiday display piece (approximately 25 x 17 inches) featuring an image of Santa Clause holding a group of N.B.C. products. It is interesting to note that one of the items Santa is holding is a box of Animal Crackers. When the company first introduced Animal Crackers they were a seasonal treat and the reason the box came with a string is that it was intended for use as a Christmas tree decoration. 2) Circa 1910 advertising display for Zu Zu Ginger Snaps. The display features Zu Zu the clown, another of the company's early and very well known trademark images. The piece (17 x 23 inches), which is dry mounted to a cardboard backing, does not display any fold lines, but has two small vertical tears extending down from the top border. Both tears have been effectively ameliorated by the mounting process and the display is otherwise in Excellent condition. 3) Circa 1918 National Biscuit Company advertising poster picturing over forty varieties of backed goods including Animal Crackers and Mallomars. This is an extraordinary piece for display and one of the highlights of this lot. Bright, crisp, and clean. The poster (36 x 24 inches), which has been dry mounted, displays both horizontal and vertical folds (as issued) upon close inspection as well a few additional creases and small tears (nearly all of which have been ameliorated by the mounting process). The piece is technically in Very Good condition but displays as Excellent. 4) Circa 1890 advertising poster issued by The New York Biscuit Company. The poster pictures over sixty varieties of biscuit tins offered by the company under a number of different brand names. The New York Biscuit Company was one of the baking companies that merged to create the National Biscuit Company in 1898. The poster (20.5 x 17 inches) has been mounted. There are small tears along both the vertical and horizontal fold lines, as well as a few additional tears (resulting in paper loss) and creases. Good condition. Despite technical flaws, the integrity of the poster remains. 5) Circa 1905 National Biscuit Company store display featuring the company's trademark "Uneeda Boy." The display reads "A Variety of National Biscuit Company Products sold here" and pictures a tin of Lorna Doone cookies. The piece (9.75 x 36.5 inches) displays three moderate horizontal folds (as issued) as well as a few light creases. In Very Good to Excellent condition. 6) Circa 1910 "Uneeda Boy" display (20.5 x 16 inches) in the form of a "blackboard" upon which the grocer could write in his specials. Heavy restoration to a number of large tears along the base; Good condition overall. 7) Circa 1935 NRA/N.B.C. banner (15.5 x 6.5 inches). OFFICE DISPLAYS: This piece, which was created for display in the NBC offices, features an illustration of the company's hundreds of plants laid out in the design of a large metropolis (19 x 11.5 inches). BAKERY ADVERTISING PIECES: Four advertising displays issued by baking companies that were later purchased by N.B.C. Two were issued circa 1898 by the Young & Larrabee company and promote their "London Cream Biscuit." Each display (8.5 x 11 inches) also features an illustration of a different U.S. battleship. The third piece is a circa 1903 advertisement (6.25 x 9.5 inches) by The Natural Food Company of Niagara Falls, in which it touts Triscuit biscuit, "Baked by Electricity." The final piece (9 x 5 inches) was issued by the F. L. Sommer and Co. Steam Bakery, circa 1895, and pictures its factory (minor restoration to a few small tears). Please note: due to the size and/or number of framed items in this collection, the shipping charges for this lot (depending on where it is sent and method of shipping) may be substantial. Total: 21 framed display pieces. Reserve $500. Estimate $1,000/$2,000.
SOLD FOR $1,410

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