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The Duplex Advertising Company. Billboard Images and Records spans the period 1964-1993 and documents the outdoor advertising work of this company in the central Texas area, primarily through photographs, negatives and slides of billboards. Many of the images are in color. A large number of the images are of national campaigns advertised in central Texas, as well as billboards, signs and posters of local Texas business services. In addition, a handful of articles written by R. V. Miller, Jr. for a number of publications, as well as other printed material and miscellaneous items from the Duplex Advertising Company, are present. Some of these articles, along with the images themselves, provide examples of commercial art and design in the outdoor advertising arena. The collection includes outdoor advertising images from national clients such as Kentucky Fried Chicken, Chevrolet, Coca Cola, Coors, Wendy's, Hardee's, and Taco Bell, and Texas clients such as Lone Star and Pearl beers.

Related materials may be found in other outdoor advertising collections, including the Outdoor Advertising Association of America Archives, the Garrett Orr Papers, the Howard Scott Papers, the John Paver Papers, the John E. Browning Papers, the R.C. Maxwell Co. Records, and the Strobridge Collection.

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The Outdoor Advertising Association of America Poster Designs are comprised of black and white poster designs (for billboard or other transit advertising), some printed on cards and some photographed and mounted in volumes, that document the advertising design holdings of several outdoor advertising companies from 1934 through the 1940s and possibly later. The majority of the designs in the collection are stock posters in preliminary sketch form with simple lines, but the collection also includes finished designs with brief information on exhibition and award status. Stock designs were created without actual brand names so more than one advertiser could use them by simply inserting their own brand name or product into the ad. The designs include work created or acquired by the Donaldson Lithographing Co., Foster and Kleiser, General Outdoor Advertising Co., and the AD-VER-TIS-ER, Inc.

These designs provide a snapshot of American consumerism during the interwar years by demonstrating how advertising professionals in the 1930s and 1940s represented products in order to entice shoppers. As well, the designs document the production of commercial art during this time period, in both the artistic process of creating ad artwork for billboards or other transit advertising space, as well as in the relationship between ad agency and client. Proven designs were available to the ad agency as sales tools to prospective clients, and these stock images could be reused, so there was less need to customize advertising campaigns for individual clients. The designs are organized into two series: Printed Poster Designs and Stock Poster Photograph Volumes.

The Printed Poster Designs Series consists of a card file of designs including some more polished billboard images, all arranged into product or service categories. The Stock Poster Photograph Volumes Series consists of twelve volumes of designs, also organized by product or service type.

Closely related collections in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library include the Outdoor Advertising Slide Library; the John E. Brennan Outdoor Advertising Survey Reports; the John Paver Papers; the John Browning Papers; the Duplex Advertising Co. Records; the War Effort Mobilization Campaigns Collection; the Outdoor Advertising Association of America Records; the Garrett Orr Papers; the R.C. Maxwell Company Records; the Howard Scott Papers; and the Strobridge Lithographing Company Photographs.

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The Acme Advertising Collection is one of the collections created by Professor Richard Pollay in the History of Advertising Archives (Faculty of Commerce, Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia). The collection was motivated by the observation that Acme named enterprises are characteristically small ventures that represent the grass roots of local and regional economies. At the same time, the ubiquity of the Acme brand name has made its way into popular culture, where it has become an icon for independent business in general, featured in print cartoons from artists such as Gary Larson (The Far Side) and G.B. Trudeau (Doonesbury), and in the Warner Bros. animated Road Runner features. Items in the Acme Collection come from a variety of sources. Many items were donated to Dr. Pollay, but the majority were acquired by Dr. Pollay himself over several decades. In earlier years items were found in shops, flea markets, and antique stores across North America. However, in recent years most items were acquired through the internet auction site, eBay (www.eBay.com). The Acme Advertising Collection dates from the 1850s through 2006 and consists of approximately 3000 items from over 900 distinct companies and producers, primarily of U.S. or Canadian origin, all bearing the brand name Acme. The collection contains a diverse array of items, both three-dimensional and printed materials, including: promotional items and memorabilia; trade cards; business cards; magazine tear sheets; catalogs; newspaper clippings; signs; displays; writing instruments; rulers; clothing; toys and games; school and office stationery supplies; photographs and slides. A number of corporations are represented in the collection, including: Acme Bail Bonds; Acme Boots; Acme Brick Company; Acme Harvester; Acme Markets; Acme Motor Truck Company; Acme White Lead and Color Works; Duane H. Nash, Inc.; Lautz Bros. and Company; and Warner Bros.

The Acme Advertising Collection dates from the 1850s through 2006 and consists of approximately 3000 items from over 900 distinct companies and producers, primarily of U.S. or Canadian origin, all bearing the brand name Acme. The collection contains a diverse array of items, both three-dimensional and printed materials, including: promotional items and memorabilia; trade cards; business cards; magazine tear sheets; catalogs; newspaper clippings; signs; displays; writing instruments; rulers; clothing; toys and games; school and office stationery supplies; photographs and slides. A number of corporations are represented in the collection, including: Acme Bail Bonds; Acme Boots; Acme Brick Company; Acme Harvester; Acme Markets; Acme Motor Truck Company; Acme White Lead and Color Works; Duane H. Nash, Inc.; Lautz Bros. and Company; and Warner Brothers.

A significant part of the collection is organized and grouped to represent rooms in a house. For example, kitchen items have been collected together. Office, wardrobe, and bathroom items are similarly gathered. Most items are represented in the Detailed Description by thumbnail images. In all, the collection consists of 28 Series: Kitchen Collectibles; Wardrobe and Bedroom Collectibles; Toys, Games, Sports and Recreation; Office and School Supplies; Domestic Hardware; Grocery and Store Collectibles; ACME Beer; Warner Brothers; Clothing Collectibles; Industrial Hardware; Bottles and Jars; Catalogs; Stationery and Certificates; Books and Monographs; Specialty Advertisements; Posters, Magazine, and Newspaper Advertisements; Sales Oddities; Photographs; eBay Files; Acme Bail Bonds; Acme Truck; Audiovisual Materials; Match Covers; Telephone Directories; Business Cards; Trade Cards; Slides; and Miscellaneous Items.

The collection arrived already organized into 28 series. Every item had been assigned an "accession number," a unique 8-digit identifier, in the format "100-xx-xxx": the middle digits refer to the Series number, and the last three digits represent a running accession sequence within the Series. Items have been arranged by Series and numerically therein; however, there are a few exceptions where items have been transferred to another series after having been previously assigned an accession number. The collection also arrived with a descriptive database that was created and maintained by Professor Pollay's staff. The item descriptions in this finding aid represent a distillation of that database into a form more consistent with EAD-compliant finding aids. The collection has been processed with the original order maintained as much as possible. In addition, some items have been deaccessioned or retained by the donor, and only a digital image of the item exists in the collection. Those have been noted in the inventory.

Series 1: Kitchen Collectibles consists of Acme products for kitchen use: juice extractors; sifters; cast iron pans; and other utensils.

Series 2: Wardrobe and Bedroom Collectibles consists of Acme products for use in the bedroom or used as part of a wardrobe, including shoe pads, zippers, scissors, etc.

Series 3: Toys, Games, Sports and Recreation includes Acme toys and games, and other items used in sports and recreation, including model cars, toy trains, whistles, and playing cards.

Series 4: Office and School Supplies includes Acme products used as office and school supplies: erasers, staplers, rulers, pencils, etc.

Series 5: Domestic Hardware includes objects related to hardware used in homes, including wall thermometers; padlocks; iron hinges; and binoculars.

Series 6: Grocery and Store Collectibles includes grocery items such as evaporated milk, potato bags, bread bags, store signs, product display signs, and postcards.

Series 7: ACME Beer includes bottles, tins, catalogs, souvenir programs, flat advertisements and advertising objects relating to the Acme brand of beer.

Series 8: Warner Brothers consists of advertising objects and novelty items from Warner Bros. that feature the Acme label: Wile E Coyote lapel pin; Acme Optical glass case; along with clothing items like neckties, waist pouches, sweatshirts, and hats.

Series 9: Clothing Collectibles consists of clothing items featuring the Acme label and includes aprons, caps and T-shirts.

Series 10: Industrial Hardware includes industrial type objects like printing plates, radio control switches, etc.

Series 11: Bottles and Jars consists of bottles, glassware and jars featuring the Acme name or logo Also included are two colored glass slides, a baby's bottle and items in glass picture frames.

Series 12: catalogs includes various-sized catalogs, brochures, ledgers, and flyers. They are: Acme Trading Co., Acme Boot Co., and Acme Brick. Each item is individually described.

Series 13: Stationery and Certificates consists of assorted business stationery and certificates, including examples of late 19th century and early 20th century lithography on bond certificates and company letter heads. The companies Duane H. Nash Inc., Acme Harvester Co., and Acme Shear Co. provide examples of typical workmanship.

Series 14: Books and Monographs includes books, picture books, monographs and magazines that feature the Acme sign or logo or make mention of Acme.

Series 15: Specialty Advertisements consists primarily of promotional items such as blotters; small calendars; stickers; and slide charts that feature an Acme logo or trademark.

Series 16: Posters, Magazine, and Newspaper Advertisements consists of print advertisements; mounted clippings; and photocopies of stationery and other paper items. Several companies are featured, including: Acme Boot Co., Acme Card System Co., Acme Harvester Co., Acme White Lead and Color Paint Works, Acme Wagon Co., Acme Washing Machine Co., and Acme Visible Card System. Each item is individually described. Each item carries an accession number.

Series 17: Sales Oddities consists of various advertising objects that feature an Acme logo or trademark, including both printed and three-dimensional objects such as tokens, pocket items, patches and decals.

Series 18: Photographs consists of photographs, negatives, and reprints of various shops, billboard, signs, and buildings featuring the Acme sign or logo. There are several pictures from Acme News Pictures, Inc. and Acme Telephoto, both press agencies.

Series 19: eBay Files consists of printouts from eBay.com relating to Acme-branded items. Printouts are housed in binders which are arranged roughly by year.

Series 20: Acme Bail Bonds consists of mostly printed materials related to the Acme Bail Bonds Company.

Series 21: Acme Truck consists of print advertisements for the Acme Truck, predominantly dating 1918-1922.

Series 22: Audiovisual Materials consists of sound and video recordings on various formats: cassette and video tapes; CD-ROM; vinyl records; and CDs. Each item features "Acme" as a trademark or logo or as part of the band name.

Series 23: Match Covers consists of assorted matchbook covers featuring the Acme label. Items are housed in a binder.

Series 24: Telephone Directories consists of the advertising Yellow pages. The provenance of these advertisements is largely unknown. The Series reflects the order in which they were collected.

Series 25: Business Cards consists of 138 business cards from various Acme companies. Items are housed in one binder.

Series 26: Trade Cards consists of various trading cards that were produced between the late 1880s and the 1930s. The bulk of items comes from the Lautz Bros Soap Co.

Series 27: Slides consists of 232 slides of various objects, locations and businesses featuring the name Acme. Slides are housed in one binder.

Series 28: Miscellaneous Items consists of miscellaneous items featuring the Acme label, name or trademark. Includes gas masks, farm implements, etc.