MG-269. STATE MUSEUM OF PENNSYLVANIA COLLECTION, 1827-1965.
Originally called the Decorative Arts Collection, this collection contains Miscellaneous ephemeral memorabilia transferred to the Archives by The State Museum. In the past, when The State Museum received a collection that included papers as well as artifacts, often the papers were given to the Archives. Included in the collection are many postcards.
Postcards, 1896-1917. The postcards are filed under various subheadings such as art, birds, Halloween, and leather. Those cards that feature African Americans show them in satirical situations or portray stereotypical blackface. Included are:
Halloween-Humorous: Watermelon Jake; Leather-There are some good openings here! (man in blackface falling into the mouth of an alligator).
Leather: I’ve no time to monkey (man in blackface falling into the mouth of an alligator).
Miscellaneous: A Bluff in Chicago (group of men playing cards with a Negro butler); A Raise in the South (group of Negroes playing cards with exaggerated facial features).
Trade cards, 1879-1911. Trade cards are also filed under various subheadings such as antiques, baking powder, boots and shoes, cement, drug and druggists, and dry goods. Many trade cards feature African Americans promoting products in various satirical situations or with exaggerated facial features. Included are:
Baking Powder: J. Monroe Taylor’s Gold Medal Soda & Baking Powder (Negro male cook baking on a ship).
Cement: Van Stan’s Stratena Ten who shall dare to chide him for sticking to the Old Arm-Chair (Negro man in silhouette falling out of rocking chair) and Cement-Van Stan’s Stratena (two Negro boys in silhouette stuck together).
Drug & Druggists: Ayer’s Cathartic Pills (Negro grandfather with two children on his knee).
Soaps, Cleaning Powders: What Dreydoppel’s Soap Did (pictured is a small Negro boy washing an elephant).
Stoves and Stove Polish: Rising Sun Stove Polish. "Come In, Ephraim! Ise not mad with you dis time, case yer sent me de genuine RISING SUN STOVE BLACKING, an’ It shines de stove in good shape. An’ here’s yer dinner all ready. Somethin’ again yer no, deed I have’t ; yer think Ise an anjul to get along without good Stove Polish?" (Negro man and woman with exaggerated facial and body features); Stoves & Stove Polish-Rising Sun Stove Polish "NO DINNER? Ise een rubbin on dat stoye all day" (Negro man and women with exaggerated facial and body features); Stoves & Stove Polish-Dixon’s Carburet of Iron Stove Polish "What Uncle Obadiah says about Dixon’s Stove Polish" (Negro grandfather and grandchildren all with exaggerated facial and body features).
Miscellaneous: J. B. Shannon & Sons Ready Mixed Paint (Negro boy poorly dressed with exaggerated facial features).