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I just have to say that finding this felt like finding the Holy Grail on some level. I have such a passion for vintage/antique ephemera, with particular emphasis on Art Deco design, font and advertising. This book is like finding the entirety of that period in a single volume. At the end of this listing, I will provide more detail with my thoughts on the importance of this book in its historical context.

Produced by David Lionel Press, Chicago in the late 1930s, this Salesman Sample/Order book is absolutely packed with catalogs, samples, order sheets and tons and tons of information and design/product ideas for anyone interested in advertising, branding, or the industrial side / office supplies for the 1930s & 1940s.

Binder measures roughly 10" x 10" with a heavy metal 2 ring insert.

There are 8 Section dividers in this book. Section 8 on Stationary & Envelopes was either never included, or long missing. It has the Divider Tab, but it is the end of the book. Each section has too much to list, but I'll give a general idea below, along with just some of the samples included in each section. I will also note any full catalogs for products that are included in some of the sections. The catalogs alone are incredible. They date from 1937 - 1939, and each is roughly 24-40+ pages of great lithograph images and tons of information & pricing.

NOTE: Each section's Index Tab indicates what is displayed in each section. There are some subsections missing, though not very many as far as I can tell. These may have been removed by the Salesman himself, or at a later date. Some of the samples have also been removed, but I am blown away by how many are intact. Most samples have been pasted either into the Informational brochures themselves, or on black stock pages. I will try to note the noteworthy sections not included.

CONDITION: The fact that this is mostly intact is pretty incredible in its own right. To say this is a scarce sample book is understating it. There is general tanning, some turned corners on a few of the catalogs, the Binder that contains everything has light rusting on the metal, and the outer covers are warped from the sheer volume of contents. This book exhibits all signs of being used, displayed and examined. I love it exactly as it is. The key points - Color, Vibrancy, Illustration quality, Design crispness, everything you'd want to glean from the beauty of this era of Design, Illustration, Advertising, Layout - it's all there, and in very well preserved condition.

Section 1:
SAMPLES INCLUDED - Several sheets of Business Cards in a variety of sizes, colors, card stocks / Gas/Mileage Record Cards with Calendars / Address and Index Folder Cards / Punch Cards for Shell Gasoline / Beauty Salons / Restaurants etc.

Section 2:
SAMPLES INCLUDED - Litho Advertising Coupons (1 remains, 4 have been torn out), Desk Blotter, Coupon Book, Coupon Tickets, Score Sheets, Announcements Cards
CATALOGS - Advertising Specialties (Pencils, Thermometers, Cig Pack Cards,Whistles, Match Cases, Knives & LOTS MORE)

Section 3: (One of my favorite sections - the samples that are in the section are awesome, though the most sample sheets are missing from this section-see below for details)

SAMPLES INCLUDED: Various Color Gummed Tape Label Strips (SQUEE), Receipt Book / Customer Order Books (sample sheets (are torn out)
Cleaner Tickets/Collection Letter Samples are missing, and there is a black sample page glued to a Price Card in this section)
CATALOGS: 48 Page Office Supplies at Low Prices -From Pencil Sharpeners to Typewriter Tables and File Cabinet Systems - incredible source of information.

Section 4 ( My favorite section, and contains the most catalogs filled with years of design inspiration)

Chip Board Gold/Silver Price Tag Squares, Die Cut Sticker examples, Insurance Policy Labels, Gummed Stickers in Rolls examples

1. Rubber Stamps- Marking Devices & Supplies Seals, etc. 32 pages
2. "In-A-Jiffy" Pricing Sets" 20 Pages with Red/Black design. (Art Deco number mania!)
3. Die Cut Odd Shaped and Fancy Labels - 32 pages - Red Printing / Navy Printing - Label Design patterns fill every single page all entirely in Red or Navy.
4. A Comprehensive Showing of Labels For Every Purpose - 56 Pages, Navy Printing, hundreds of designs for labels, loaded with font, design, layout examples

Section 5:

SAMPLES: Paper Drinking Cup, Multi Page "Attractive Menu Sheets" Fold Out with printed examples of menu layouts,Cardboard Folding Menu examples, Has 2 different double-sided fold outs with printed examples of "Business Booster Punch Tickets"

1.Complete Line of Restaurant Necessities - 11 pages, Black Printing, Menu Covers, Ledgers and more.

Section 6:
SAMPLES: Cabonized Printed Sales Book Set Samples, Double Sided Fold Outs with printed examples of Sales Books in all combos, Additional Sales Book Sample Sets for Dry Cleaners & Banks

CATALOGS: 8 Page Duplicate Stock Sales Book - Black Printing, tons of examples, layouts, prices, and options.

Section 7:

Price Tags, Lay-away tags, Service Tags, Shipping Tags, Repair Orders, Daily Milk Records

1. Modern 2-Color Service Tags - Red and Blue Printing, 7 pages heavier stock paper with
multiple Service Tag examples on each page, great graphics!!
2. Shipping Tags - 8 Sizes, Multi-Page Double-Sided Fold Out, Black Printing, Tons of Tag Layout, Design Options, Fonts, etc.


5 Cheers if you've made it this far. I apologize for the excessive illustration of the various components of this book, I'm in love with it, it's clear. I am very passionate about this book finding its new caretaker, and am open to convo from seriously interested parties.

If you are passionate about this era in History and its design aesthetic combined with the functionality of Industry at a time when the United States was still fighting its way out of the Great Depression, then you will no doubt be able to place this Sample Book in the appropriate context. All the signs of use and careful study that this book holds, are indicative of the possible efforts of its original owner to convince small and growing business' that these advertising gimmicks and necessary supplies were essential to climbing out of the long financial recession experienced in the United States in the 1930s. It additionally is full at every turn, of the hope and promise that things were moving forward, that progress and opportunity was all around. This era, in my opinion, is one of the most optimistic times in Advertising History and is at one of the pinnacles of printed design and aesthetic style on a broad scale.

In short, this is a very very special book indeed.

It will be shipped Priority Mail, with Delivery Confirmation and Insurance. Please convo with any questions, or shipping requests, I am happy to accommodate. Domestic Shipping will be provided free of charge. International Shipping will be Express Mail - please convo for exact cost to your International Location.

1937 Salesman Sample Order Book David Lionel Press Advertising Idea Bible Art Deco Design Reference

$325.00 USD
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  • Vintage item from the 1930s
  • Materials: Advertising Sample Book, Design Catalogs, Advertising Idea Book, Salesman Samples, Printing Examples, Red Black Design Examples, Navy Blue Design Examples, Art Deco Advertising Designs, Product Catalogs, Office Accessory Catalogs, Business Card Samples 1930s, Gummed Labels Price Tags 1930s, Sales Memo Menu Examples 1930s
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  • Only ships within United States.