Old Hickory to Honest Abe

This update, our last for 2021 (how the year has flown by...but we always say that) features material from the era of Andrew Jackson through the reelection of Abraham Lincoln in 1864, a time of rising tensions in American politics, culminating in a bloody civil war.

In this pre-pinback era, political campaigns utilized ribbons and medals as wearable devices for signifying support for a candidate. The earliest political posters made their appearance, an innovation we can credit to one firm, N. Currier of New York, which began issuing "Grand National Banners" in 1844. These folksy prints were meant to portray the banners carried in parades, almost all of which no longer exist, so we have only the prints to get a sense of how colorful these demonstrations were. Photographic badges began to appear in the 1850s, and achieved popularity with the election of 1860. Badges with inset ferrotypes have always been immensely popular with collectors, especially the rare examples that survive in pristine condition.

Please note, our office will be closed from December 24th to January 4th. Although standard mail packages have not been slower this season as they were last year, we nonetheless recommend expedited or overnight service if you must have it by Christmas.

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