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John R. Bittner papers, 1918-1994 and undated 3 Linear Feet — 500 items

Professor of mass communications and administrator at University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.

Collection consists mainly of advertisements and some marketing and sales items collected by Bittner and used largely as source material for illustrating his publications. Formats comprising clipped advertisements (dating from 1919), tear sheets, storyboards, photographs, annual reports, news releases, and catalogs focus on products (including Coca-Cola), clothing, media (television and radio), and electronics. Acquired as part of the John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising and Marketing History.

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Alphabetical files of miscellaneous information about hundreds of mainly U.S. corporations, some of them domestic and many multinational. The fullest documentation tends to be for companies that are or have been JWT clients (notably Kraft, Quaker Oats, Sears, Ford, Northern Telcom, Gerber, Kellogg, Philip Morris, Oscar Mayer, Kemper, S.C. Johnson, McDonnell Douglas, Jos. Schlitz, 7-Up, and others) and several that are or were major competitors of JWT clients (e.g. AT&T, McDonald's, General Motors, among others). Files contain widely diverse formats of information including internal JWT unpublished reports and memoranda; many articles clipped from magazines (especially trade press) and newspapers; articles printed from computer databases; company publications and annual reports; historical booklets and articles; three vinyl record albums; and miscellaneous items. The richest files tend to be those for major JWT Chicago office accounts, with by far the greatest amount and diversity of information on Kraft. Acquired as part of the John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising, and Marketing History.

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The J. Walter Thompson Company (JWT), founded in 1864, is one of the oldest and largest enduring advertising agencies in the world. It opened its first international office in London in 1899, and by 1930 the agency had established offices in some 30 countries. At present, JWT manages offices or partnership arrangements in approximately 90 countries. The J. Walter Thompson Company (JWT) International Advertisements Collection spans the years 1900-2004 and consists primarily of print advertisements, along with some transparencies, photocopies of advertising, and other collateral material that document some of JWT's international advertising campaigns through the 20th century. Clients include a variety of local, national and multinational commercial firms, as well as government institutions and public service organizations. The holdings of the collection are uneven, with the bulk of the advertisements dating from the mid-1960s up to about 1990. There are limited early advertisements from Chesebrough-Pond's, General Motors, and other clients dating from the late 1920s and early 1930s in print and on microfilm from the various offices established during those years. There are almost no international advertisements from roughly 1933 to the middle of the 1950s. The United Kingdom, the British Commonwealth countries, and Latin America account for most of the advertisements from the mid-1950s to the late 1970s. While the holdings since about 1980 are much larger than earlier holdings, they are by no means complete, and vary substantially from office to office. Key multinational clients represented in the collection include Chesebrough-Pond's, Eastman Kodak, Ford, General Motors, Kraft, IBM, Pepsi, R.J. Reynolds, and Unilever. English translations of foreign-language advertisements are often provided by JWT's Asian and Pacific Offices. European and Latin American Offices provided translations far less frequently. Advertisements for members of the British Commonwealth are generally available in English only or in both English and the local language. Spanish-language advertisements produced by JWT offices in the United States, intended for the domestic Spanish-speaking population as well as for Latin America, may be found in the J. Walter Thompson Company Domestic Advertisements Collection.

The J. Walter Thompson Company (JWT) International Advertisements Collection spans the years 1900-2004 and consists primarily of print advertisements, along with some transparencies, photocopies of advertising, and other collateral material that document some of JWT's international advertising campaigns through the 20th century. Clients include a variety of local, national and multinational commercial firms, as well as government institutions and public service organizations. The holdings of the collection are uneven, with the bulk of the advertisements dating from the mid-1960s up to about 1990. There are limited early advertisements from Chesebrough-Pond's, General Motors, and other clients dating from the late 1920s and early 1930s in print and on microfilm from the various offices established during those years. A larger selection of early advertisements may be found on Microfilm Reel #41 (35 mm). Contact Reference Staff for access.

There are almost no international advertisements from roughly 1933 to the middle of the 1950s. The United Kingdom, the British Commonwealth countries, and Latin America account for most of the advertisements from the mid-1950s to the late 1970s. While the holdings since about 1980 are much larger than earlier holdings, they are by no means complete, and vary substantially from office to office. Key multinational clients represented in the collection include Chesebrough-Pond's, Eastman Kodak, Ford, General Motors, Kraft, IBM, Pepsi, R.J. Reynolds, and Unilever.

English translations of foreign-language advertisements are often provided by JWT's Asian and Pacific Offices. European and Latin American Offices provided translations far less frequently. Advertisements for members of the British Commonwealth are generally available in English only or in both English and the local language. Spanish-language advertisements produced by JWT offices in the United States, intended for the domestic Spanish-speaking population as well as for Latin America, may be found in the Domestic Advertisements Collection.

The collection is organized into the following geographical series: Africa, Asia/Pacific, Canada, Europe, and Latin America. The multinational series are arranged alphabetically by country. For countries with multiple offices, the folders are arranged alphabetically by the office of origin. When it has been determined that more than one office within a country has been responsible for a client, the advertisements for that client are housed at the beginning of the country’s collection in a "Multiple Office" group, listed alphabetically by product and the office involved as applicable (for exception, see below).

Advertisements are arranged according to the parent company of the product being marketed (i.e. Miracle Whip, Philadelphia cream cheese, Miracoli pasta and tomato sauce, and various salad dressings are all filed together under Kraft, within a given country). Because of corporate buyouts and name changes, it may be useful to search for a product under an older or more recent parent company (for example, Standard Brands and Nabisco, or Unilever and Brooke Bond Oxo). In some cases, the parent company may not be as well known as the brand name (such as Reckitt and Colman, parent company of Gerber Baby Foods), or could not be determined, so some flexibility in searching for products and companies is recommended.

The collection of advertisements from the Montreal Office is an exception to some of the notes and guidelines above. With 28 boxes of advertisements in French and English spanning 1921 to the 1990s, the Montreal Office Subseries is almost as large as the remainder of the entire collection. To maintain the integrity of these holdings, all advertisements from JWT/Montreal are housed together in the Montreal Office Subseries, even when Toronto and/or Vancouver also produced advertisements for the same client (for example, Labatts).

In addition, a small collection of international advertisements, mounted on foamboard for display purposes, is itemized at the end of this finding aid under the heading Mounted Advertisements.

Large-format materials have been removed to Oversize Materials. A dummy folder indicated by text in brackets has been inserted at the logical location of the removed material.

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Advertising executive, art director and graphic designer with the Cunningham & Walsh advertising agency in New York City. Collection includes prints, sketches, gels, photos, catalogues, correspondence, a set of logo design sketches for Cross Westchester Corporate Park, a drawing of an automobile by George or Robert Giusti and a sketch on a linen napkin from the restaurant Nicola Paone. Companies represented in include Amerika-Haus, Cunningham & Walsh, Boise Cascade Paper Company, St. Regis Paper Company, Herman Miller, Inc., Jaguar automobile, Sunshine Biscuits, Inc. (Kellogg), Western Electric Company (AT & T Technologies, Inc.), and Yellow Pages. Acquired as part of the John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising and Marketing History.

Collection includes prints, sketches, gels, photos, catalogues, correspondence, a set of logo design sketches for Cross Westchester Corporate Park, a drawing of an automobile by George or Robert Giusti and a sketch on a linen napkin from the restaurant Nicola Paone. Companies represented in include Amerika-Haus, Cunningham & Walsh, Boise Cascade Paper Company, St. Regis Paper Company, Herman Miller, Inc., Jaguar automobile, Sunshine Biscuits, Inc. (Kellogg), Western Electric Company (AT & T Technologies, Inc.), and Yellow Pages. Acquired as part of the John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising and Marketing History.

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The Outdoor Advertising Association of America Slide Library spans the years 1891 through the 2000s, with the bulk of the collection originating in the 1950s and later. The collection documents over a hundred years of outdoor advertising primarily in the United States, plus some international campaigns from several other continents. The Slide Library is a large collection, almost entirely comprised of slides of billboards, exhibiting a grand range of graphic artistry, advertising campaigns, and marketing strategies. A smaller group of images supports the ad collection with views of artwork, billboard construction and other related images. In addition to over 62,000 slides, there are a few early glass slides, as well as transparencies, a small number of paper files, and six audiocassettes accompanying slide presentations. Many images were submitted by outdoor advertising companies over a number of years to the Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA) as entries in annual national competitions to determine the best poster designs. The OAAA currently sponsors the OBIE Awards, which were preceded by awards programs under various names and sponsorships starting in the early 1930s. The award is modeled after the ancient Egyptian obelisk, considered by many the earliest form of outdoor advertising. Indeed much of the collection can be seen as evidence of this awards program although only the Award Nominees Series contains slides labeled as such. Other slides probably were transferred to OAAA when companies cleaned out their back files, though the precise sources of many items are unknown. The slides were maintained at OAAA primarily as a large supply of creative examples for member companies. Researchers interested in the following subjects may find the Outdoor Advertising Association of America Slide Library especially helpful: the outdoor advertising medium itself, advertising awards, advertising design, billboard construction, and commercial art, as well as the many outdoor advertising companies, advertisers, and advertising campaigns represented.

The images, designed to attract mass audiences, depict part of American society's history - a history of consumer attitudes and desires. The collection is therefore a valuable tool in formulating not only a pictorial development of the outdoor advertising industry but of societal norms and opinions. The ads speak to the creativity of artists and designers, but they also convey a rich story of how these creators saw society at large, especially in the United States. Perhaps more importantly, ads reveal how corporations and designers felt America wanted to see itself. Such visual richness underlies the primary goals of selling goods and services and promoting ideas for the public good. There are thousands of product advertisements but also many public service ads, political issue ads, and even Happy Birthday greetings in the collection. Billboards are one direct link from corporate America, various interest groups, and their advertising specialists to consumers; and a succinct one-sided conversation designed to spur them to action.

In contrast to other types of advertising, outdoor ads were designed with the fast-moving traveler in mind. The collection documents well the evolution of the billboard's attempt to reach those on the move, especially drivers. With careful thought to what would quickly provoke interest, advertisers presented a huge range of thought from text-free images of abstract artwork to direct discourse (e.g. Vote for Nixon). Because posters were displayed for only limited time periods, and because their physical size makes them impractical to store, photography is the primary method of capturing billboard images. Most billboard photos - whether print or slide - were created to document the work of the company which posted them for their business use.

Within the Slide Library, the creative output of many outdoor advertising companies is documented, although particular creators of many of the ads are unknown. Foster and Kleiser is well represented in the collection. Other companies named in the collection include Naegele, Pacific, Turner, Eller, Donnelly, Columbus, General Outdoor, Patrick, Gannett, Lamar, United, and many others. Thousands of national campaigns are represented, but many local ads are present as well. Outdoor formats range from 19th century posters to "multi-vision" boards that automatically change views with the use of three-sided boards. Most images are of actual billboards, posters, and other outdoor advertising formats in the field, while a sizable portion are just images of the ad design itself with a plain background. There are some slides of stock posters ("Your brand name here") and other forms of outdoor advertising such as bus cards, street furniture, and truck side advertising. The vast majority of the advertisements are in English.

The first three series make up the bulk of the collection: the Award Nominees Series, the Chronological Series, and the Topical Series (by far the largest of the three). These series are made up almost completely of slides showing advertisements, usually in billboard format. All series are described further within the container list. The only other series with a sizable number of advertisements is the International Posters Series. This is where the largest concentration of international ads is found, although there are a few scattered within the other main series. Ads may also be found scattered throughout the Presentations and Presentation Slides Series.

Several additional small series contain images of related content, providing support and context to the advertisements. These include the Construction and Creation Series, the Artwork Series, the Street Scenes and Approaches Series, and the Other Outdoor Advertising Related Images Series. The Presentations and Presentation Slides Series adds insight by showing some of the internal conversation between directors and trainees, advertisers and advertising creators, and more.

The most direct route to locate any identified ad is through the Resource for Outdoor Advertising Description (ROAD) database, available in early 2003. Information about most slides in the collection has been added to this database. Researchers will be able to search for specific attributes of ads such as brand or company name, product type, and headline, as well as other types of information including slide number, date, collection name, image type, image color, outdoor advertising type, and special notes. Many database records also contain a searchable field with the outdoor advertising company's name (posting company), a field indicating if the billboard is in a rural or urban setting, information on the presence of women, children, ethnic individuals, or famous people in the ad, and the billboard's geographic location. Various slide series were entered into the database differently. Multiple searches may be required for comprehensive searching. For more information, consult Research Services Staff (special-collections@duke.edu).

For more contextual information, use this collection in conjunction with the Outdoor Advertising Association of America Records, especially that collection's Physical Structure Series, and Photographs, Slides, and Negatives Series. Closely related collections in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library include the John Brennan Outdoor Advertising Survey Reports, the John Paver Papers, the John Browning Papers, the Duplex Advertising Co. Records, the H.E. Fisk Collection of War Effort Mobilization Campaigns, the Outdoor Advertising Association of America Records, the Outdoor Advertising Poster Design Collection, the Garrett Orr Papers, the R.C. Maxwell Company Records, the Howard Scott Papers, and the Strobridge Lithographing Company Advertisements.