Guide to the Division of Cultural History Lantern Slides and Stereographs
Digitized Content

Summary
Collection ID:
NMAH.AC.0945
Creators:
Maertz, J.F., Department Store (Milwaukee, Wis.).
Stanley-Brown, Joseph, 1858-1941
Keystone View Company
Rau, William H.
Dates:
1887-1930
bulk 1900-1930
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
8 Cubic feet
(29 boxes)
Repository:
Collection consists of lantern slides and stereographs produced by several companies: Keystone View Company, Better America Lecture Service, Incorporated, American Press Association, J. Stanley-Brown, William H. Rau, and J. F. Maertz Department Store. The lantern slides were primarily intended to be used for educational presentations about the United States, other countries, history, and society. Many of the slides and stereographs are accompanied by descriptive text and in some instances by small cards--one card for each slide--and in other instances directly on the back of a stereoview. The majority of images were taken from 1900 to 1930.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The collection consists of lantern slides and stereographs primarily designed for use in audio-visual educational presentations about the United States, other countries, history, and society. Many of the slides and stereographs are accompanied by descriptive text. In some instances on small cards--one card for each slide-- and in other instances printed directly on the back of a stereoview. A few of the lantern slides, particularly the ones of the J. F. Maertz Department Store of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, are advertisements for consumer products. The majority were taken from 1890 through 1930. While the collection as a whole is in good general condition, some lantern slides, stereographs, and text cards are missing, and some of the lantern slides are cracked.
The collection will appeal to researchers examining the course of nineteenth-century social history broadly, especially how lantern slides were marketed to educators to teach geography, social studies, science, history and reading. The lantern slides as artifacts will be of interest to those who study material culture.
Series 1, Keystone View Company Lantern Slides and Stereographs, undated, is divided into seven subseries: Subseries 1, #1-#600, undated; Subseries 2, H-1 to H-300; Subseries 3, Biblical, undated; Subseries 4, Santa Barbara, California, undated; Subseries 5, Roads, undated; and Subseries 6, Miscellaneous, undated.
The series depicts scenes from around the United States and the rest of the world. Each image is intended to be characteristic of its location and in most cases is accompanied by a text card that describes the scene and gives the geographic coordinates (latitude and longitude) of the location. Many of the glass lantern slides have corresponding stereoviews and in these instances two box numbers are given.
Subseries 1, #1-#600, undated, is arranged in order by the numbers on the image. Views #1-261 are arranged in a rough geographic order beginning in Maine and proceeding down the Atlantic Coast, through the former Confederate states, into the Midwest and Plains states, the mountain West states and the West coast, and ending in the territories of Alaska and Hawaii and the Panama Canal. Views #262-346 begin in eastern Canada, proceed across Canada and move through Mexico and Central America into the Caribbean, thence the length of South America and the Antarctic. Views #347-554 begin in the British Isles and move through Northern and Southern Europe and into Central Europe and then Russia, the Middle East, South Asia, and the Far East. Views #556-592 begin in North Africa and cover the length of the continent and a few areas in the Pacific. The series concludes with views of several planets, President McKinley reviewing Civil War heroes (1899), and the work of a Mexican artist (1900).
Subseries 2, H-1 to H-300, undated, is arranged in order by the numbers on the image. H-1 to H-258 depict scenes and sites of American history beginning with several images of indigenous peoples and proceeding, roughly chronologically, through major events and locations to about 1925. Images H-259 to H-300 document a range of localities and activities across the country in the mid-1920s, including major buildings in Washington, D.C., industrial activities, and modern agricultural practices.
Subseries 3, Biblical, undated, shows religious art works and rural scenes.
Subseries 4, Santa Barbara, California, undated, contains two images. One is pastoral with a Franscican friar, the other a fountain.
Subseries 5, Roads, undated, includes three images of roads, one with a person on horseback, the other two depicting wagons.
Subseries 6, Miscellaneous, undated, contains lithoprint stereographs, each with a short description, depicting scenes such as landmarks in the United States; news events in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries; warfare; domestic scenes and scenes of foreign countries.
Series 2, Hillis Better America Lecture Service lantern slides, undated, is divided into 12 subseries: Subseries 1, Ability Lecture Slides, undated; Subseries 2, Bolshevism Lecture Slides, undated; Subseries 3, Builders Lecture Slides, undated; Subseries 4, Equality Lecture Slides, undated; Subseries 5, Fathers Lecture Slides, undated; Subseries 7, General Lecture Slides, undated; Subseries 8, Poverty Lecture Slides, undated; Subseries 9, Property Lecture Slides, undated; Subseries 10, Republic Lecture Slides, undated; Subseries 11, Socialism Lecture Slides, undated; and Subseries 12, Miscellaneous Lecture Slides, undated.
This series consists of lantern slides produced by Newell Dwight Hillis' Better America Lecture Service Incorporated. Newell Dwight Hillis (1858-1929), was a noted clergyman, lecturer and author. The Better American Lecture Service sought to make better Americans and to inspire greater loyalty to American institutions. Better America Lecture Service rented the lecture manuscript and slides to churches, societies, schools, and patriotic organizations. Slides were sent in a tin box and contained suggestions for publicity arrangements. (Nevada Educational Bulletin, December 1920).
Hillis published more than twenty volumes including collections of his sermons, inspirational works, and a novel. In addition, many of Hillis addresses were published and distributed as pamphlets. The slides were intended to be used for lectures on subjects such as socialism and equality. The slides generally consist of text, drawings, images of persons, paintings, and landscapes. A few slides in each set are missing, and there is no text accompanying any of the slides. The series is arranged into twelve subseries alphabetically by topic.
Series 3, American Press Association lantern slides, undated, is divided into ten subseries: Subseries 1, General Images, undated; Subseries 2, Coffins and soliders, undated; Subseries 3, Mexican War, undated; Subseries 4, Niagara Falls Conference, undated; Subseries 5, Pancho Villa and Major Gonzales, undated; Subseries 6, Parade, undated; Subseries 7, Refugees, undated; Subseries 8, Warships, undated; Subseries 9, West Virginia Mine Explosion, undated; and Subseries 10, Women March for Votes (Suffrage), undated.
The series consists of lantern slides from the American Press Association depicting news events from early twentieth century history (e.g., Mexican War; Ludlow Colorado strike; suffragettes; Gettysburg veterans; various ship disasters). Each slide has a caption with a brief description of the scene. Many slides are cracked; one is completely broken and is in a folded paper. There are also approximately fifty slides with scenes of events associated with the Mexican-American War, most with short captions identifying the scenes. Many of these slides are cracked.
Series 4, J. F. Maertz Department Stores advertisement lantern slides, early 1920s, is divided into thirteen subseries: Subseries 1, Bathrooms, undated; Subseries 2, Children's shoes and clothing, undated; Subseries 3, Dress goods, undated; Subseries 4, Dress patterns, undated; Subseries 5, Hosiery, undated; Subseries 6, House furnishings, undated; Subseries 7, House wares, undated; Subseries 8, Ladies' Home Journal, undated; Subseries 9, Shoes, undated; Subseries 10, Store advertising, undated; Subseries 11, Underwear, undated; Subseries 12, Women's clothing, undated; and Subseries 13, Miscellaneous, undated.
The series consists of lantern slides showing advertisements used in J.F. Maertz Department Store catalogs for consumer goods. Slides are categorized by type of goods, including children's shoes and clothes, bathroom needs, dress patterns, men's wear, shoes, house furnishings, house wares, Ladies' Home Journal, and underwear.
Series 5, J. Stanley-Brown and E. H. Harriman lantern slides, undated, is divided into nineteen subseries: Subseries 1, Alaska-California scenes, undated; Subseries 2, Animal life, undated; Subseries 3, Artifacts, undated; Subseries 4, California/Franciscan life, undated; Subseries 5, California Indians, undated; Subseries 6, California mission exteriors, undated; Subseries 7, California mission interiors, undated; Subseries 8, Eskimos,undated; Subseries 9, Franciscans, undated; Subseries 10, Indians, undated; Subseries 11, Landscapes, undated; Subseries 12, Maps, undated; Subseries 13, Mission interiors, undated; Subseries 14, Seascapes, undated; Subseries 15, General images (#1-7;10), undated; Subseries 16, General images (#11-14; 16-17; 19-20), undated; Subseries 17, General images (#21-30), undated; Subseries 18, General images (#31-33; 36-40), undated; and Subseries 19, General images (#42; 45-50), undated.
The series contains lantern slides, each labeled with the names of distributors, "J. Stanley-Brown, 1318 Massachusetts Avenue, Washington, D.C. and E.H. Harriman, 1 East, 55th Street, New York." The slides, some with captions, depict maps; landscapes; seascapes; Eskimos; animal life; Franciscan dwellings; Indians of California; California missions and Franciscan life. There are slides depicting various scenes of California missions and scenes of indigenous Alaskans. Some slides are cracked.
Series 6, Miscellaneous Stereographs, 1894-1907, is divided into seventeen subseries: Subseries 1, American Series, 1887; Subseries 2, C.H. Graves Publisher, 1907; Subseries 3, Griffith and Griffith, 1894; Subseries 4, Pesko Binocular Company, 1907; Subseries 5, William H. Rau Publisher,undated; Subseries 6, Domestic scenes,undated; Subseries 7, Military, undated; Subseries 8, Miscellaneous, undated; Subseries 9, Places--Asia, undated; Subseries 10, Places--Cuba, undated; Subseries 11, Places--Egypt, undated; Subseries 12, Places--France, undated; Subseries 13, PLaces--Germany, undated; Subseries 14, Places--Italy, undated; Subseries 15, Places--Monte Carlo, undated; Subseries 16, Places-- Palestine, undated; and Subseries 17, Places--United States, undated.
The series consists of lantern slides and stereoviews from distributors that include the American Series; Griffith and Griffith; Pesko Binocular Company; William H. Rau Publisher; and the Universal Photo Art Company.
The stereographs related to domestic and military issues and geography are dated circa 1905, and copyrighted by H. C. White, and distrbuted by World Series.
The stereo views produced by William H. Rau, a publisher in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, show parades and other ceremonies at Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) encampments and Elks conventions held in Philadelphia. The Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) was a fraternal organization composed of veterans of the Union Army who served in the American Civil War.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is divided into six series.
Series 1: Keystone View Company Lantern Slides and Stereographs, undated
Subseries 1, #1-#600, undated
Subseries 2, H-1 to H-300, undated
Subseries 3, Biblical, undated
Subseries 4, Santa Barbara, California, undated
Subseries 5, Roads, undated
Subseries 6, Miscellaneous, undated
Series 2, Hillis Better America Lecture Service Lantern Slides, undated
Subseries 1, Ability Lecture Slides, undated
Subseries 2, Bolshevism Lecture Slides, undated
Subseries 3, Builders Lecture Slides, undated
Subseries 4, Equality Lecture Slides, undated
Subseries 5, Ftahers Lecture Slides, undated
Subseries 7, General Lecture Slides, undated
Subseries 8, Poverty Lecture Slides, undated
Subseries 9, Property Lecture Slides, undated
Subseries 10, Republic Lecture Slides, undated
Subseries 11, Socialism Lecture Slides, undated
Subseries 12, Miscellaneous Lecture Slides, undated
Series 3, American Press Association Lantern Slides, undated
Subseries 1, General Images, undated
Subseries 2, Coffins and Soliders, undated
Subseries 3, Mexican War, undated
Subseries 4, Niagara Falls Conference, undated
Subseries 5, Pancho Villa and Major Gonzales, undated
Subseries 6, Parade, undated
Subseries 7, Refugees, undated
Subseries 8, Warships, undated
Subseries 9, West Virginia Mine Explosion, undated
Subseries 10, Women March for Votes (Suffrage), undated
Series 4, J. F. Maertz Department Store Advertisement Lantern Slides, early 1920s
Subseries 1, Bathrooms, undated
Subseries 2, Children's shoes and clothing, undated
Subseries 3, Dress goods, undated
Subseries 4, Dress patterns, undated
Subseries 5, Hosiery, undated
Subseries 6, House furnishings, undated
Subseries 7, House wares, undated
Subseries 8, Ladies' Home Journal, undated
Subseries 9, Shoes, undated
Subseries 10, Store advertising, undated
Subseries 11, Underwear, undated
Subseries 12, Women's clothing, undated
Subseries 13, Miscellaneous, undated
Series 5, J. Stanley-Brown and E.H. Harriman lantern slides, undated
Subseries 1, Alaska-California scenes, undated
Subseries 2, Animal life, undated
Subseries 3, Artifacts, undated
Subseries 4, California/Franciscan life, undated
Subseries 5, California Indians, undated
Subseries 6, California mission exteriors, undated
Subseries 7, California mission interiors, undated
Subseries 8, Eskimos, undated
Subseries 9, Franciscans, undated
Subseries 10, Indians, undated
Subseries 11, Landscapes, undated
Subseries 12, Maps, undated
Subseries 13, Mission interiors, undated
Subseries 14, Seascapes, undated
Subseries 15, General images (#1-7;10), undated
Subseries 16, General images (#11-14; 16-17; 19-20), undated
Subseries 17, General images (#21-30), undated
Subseries 18, General images (#31-33; 36-40), undated
Subseries 19, General images (#42; 45-50), undated
Series 6, Miscellaneous Stereographs, 1887-1907
Subseries 1, American Series, 1887
Subseries 2, C.H. Graves Publisher, 1907
Subseries 3, Griffith and Griffith, 1894
Subseries 4, Pesko Binocular Company, 1907
Subseries 5, William H. Rau Publisher, undated
Subseries 6, Domestic scenes, undated
Subseries 7, Military, undated
Subseries 8, Places-Asia, undated
Subseries 9, Places-Cuba, undated
Subseries 10, Places-Egypt, undated
Subseries 11, Places-France, undated
Subseries 12, Places-Germany, undated
Subseries 13, Places-Italy, undated
Subseries 14, Places-Monte Carlo, undated
Subseries 6.15, Palestine, undated
Subseries 6.16, Places-United States, undated
Subseries 6.17: Miscellaneous, undated

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Lantern slides are two nearly identical photographs or photomechanical prints, paired to produce the illusion of a single three-dimensional image; usually viewed with a stereoscope. Typically, they are photographic prints on card mounts, but may also be daguerreotypes, glass negatives, or other processes. The card mounts are commonly 3.5 x 7 in. (9 x 18 cm.) or up to 5 x 7 in. (12 x 18 cm.). Popular in the United States 1859-1920s lantern slides were typically used for presentations, lectures, and educational purposes and were narrated. Thesaurus of Graphic Materials
Stereographs consist of two nearly identical photographs or photomechanicl prints, paired to produce the illusion of a single three-dimensional image, usually when viewed through a sterescope. Typically, the images are on card mounts, but they take the form of daguerreotypes, glass negatives, or other processes. Stereographs were first made inthe 1850s and are still made today. They were most popular between 1870 and 1920.
In 1851 stereo daguerreotypes were exhibited for the first time to the general public at the London International Exhibition (Crystal Palace). Shortly thereafter, American photographers began making stereographs. One of the first American photographic firms to produce stereographs was the team of William and Frederick Langenheim. The Library owns a set of their early stereoviews of American cities on the East Coast.
By 1860 both amateur photographers and publishing firms were making stereographs. The major stereo publishers sold their views by mail order, door-to-door salesmen, and in stores. Stereographs were sold individually and in boxed sets.
Stereographs are usually mounted. They were typically published with caption information printed under the image or on the back of the mount. The mount also provided information about the publisher, photographer, and sometimes the series or a list of views available from the photographer or publisher.
Stereographs were collected by many middle-class families in the late 19th century. People acquired stereographs of tourist sites they had visited, as well as exotic locales that they would only experience through the wonder of the stereoscope. Viewing stereographs was a common activity, much like watching television or going to the movies today. Stereoviews were also used as an education tool in classrooms. (Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Online Catalog, Stereograph Format)
The Division of Cultural History at the National Museum of American History assembled a collection of miscellaneous lantern slides and stereographs beginning in 1943. Other collection contents were acquired over many years in unrecorded transactions.
Several distributors and publishers of stereographic images are represented in the collection. One of the most prominent was the Keystone View Company of Meadville, Pennsylvania. Founded by Benneville Lloyd Singley (d.1938), a former Underwood & Underwood salesman, Keystone became a major distributor of stereographic images. From 1892 through 1963 it produced and distributed both educational and comic/sentimental stereoviews and stereoscopes used to see the images in 3-D. By 1905 it was the world's largest stereographic company. In 1963 Department A (stereoviews sold to individual families) and the education departments were closed, but Keystone continued to manufacture eye-training stereographic products as a subsidiary of Mast Development Company. In 1972 Mast closed the Meadville manufacturing site.
All of Keystone's manufacturing was done in Meadville, but branch offices were in New York, St. Louis, San Francisco, Portland, Oregon, Chicago, Toronto, Canada and London, England. Salesmen and photographers were scattered around the world, and the company offered 20,000 different views.
Selling stereoviews and lantern slides to schools was a field pioneered by Underwood & Underwood, and for several years Underwood & Underwood and Keystone were competitors for the growing educational market. According to the 1953 Keystone Sales Manual the more aggressive sales methods and the more progressive editorial policies of the Keystone View Company soon made it the acknowledged leader in the industry, and Underwood & Underwood decided to give up the contest.
Between 1915 and 1921 Keystone View Company purchased the negatives of nearly all of its competitors. They also continued to have staff photographers travel the world, so that by 1935 Keystone had approximately two million stereoscopic negatives.
Keystone View Company produced stereographic sets up through the mid-twentieth century, and had a stereoscopic photographer on staff until at least 1955.
References
Thesaurus of Graphic Materials, (2007), http://www.loc.gov/rr/print/tgm1/ (accessed February 10, 2011).
Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Online Catalog, Stereograph Format, http://www.loc.gov/pictures/collection/stereo/background.html (accessed February 14, 2011).

Administration
Processing Information
Processed by Alison Oswald, archivist, December, 2010; David Weiss (volunteer), June, 2010; Shana Oltsman (intern) and Dexter Hobbs (intern), December, 2010.
Author
Alison Oswald
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Donated to the Department of Anthropology, United States National Museum by Mrs. Joseph Stanley-Brown, through Mrs. Herbert Feis, in 1943.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
Unrestricted research access on site by appointment. Unprotected lantern slides and stereographs must be handled with gloves.
Preferred Citation
Division of Cultural History Lantern Slides and Stereographs, dates, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Conditions Governing Use
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Reproduction permission from Archives Center: reproduction fees may apply.

Related Materials
Materials in the Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Underwood & Underwood Glass Stereograph Collection, 1895-1921, (AC0143)
Other Institutions with Materials
University of California, Riverside/California Museum of Photography
George Eastman House
Temple University
Brooklyn Historical Society

Custodial History
Custodial History
Transferred to the Archives Center by the Division of Culture and the Arts, National Museum of American History (formerly known as the Division of Cultural History, then Division of Music, Sports, and Entertainment), on February 13, 2008.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Photographs -- Black-and-white photoprints -- Stereographs -- 1900-1950 Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Milwaukee (Wis.) Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Stereographs -- 1900-1910 Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Photographs -- Lantern slides -- 1900-1950 Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Lantern slides Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
California Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
P.O. Box 37012
Suite 1100, MRC 601
Washington, D.C. 20013-7012
archivescenter@si.edu
http://americanhistory.si.edu/archives