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Arrangement

SERIES LIST

Series I. Ballots

This series includes paper ephemera related to the voter registration and voting processes. The bulk of the series is comprised of paper ballots intended to have been deposited by voters in ballot boxes to reflect their choice of candidates. In the 19th century, many of these ballots were printed by commercial printers and were heavily decorated. As the century progressed, paper ballots increasingly were printed by governmental agencies until their eventual replacement by voting machines. The series also contains petitions, applications, sample ballots showing how to use voting machines, and other instructional materials for voters

Series II. Bric-a-Brac

This series is comprised of three-dimensional promotional items, ranging from tableware and glassware to matchbooks, phonograph records, and ashtrays. As its name implies, this is a true "grab bag" category. The bulk of Bric-a-Brac items are utilitarian in nature, and were decorated to promote or demonstrate allegiance to particular candidates.

Series III. Books

Susan Douglas donated a small quantity of books to Cornell, most of which are secondary reference sources on American politics. Items in the "Books" category will not be digitized by the Political Americana Project.

Series IV. Broadsides

This series contains an assortment of promotional, declaratory, and advertising items. Most of these items are made of paper, advertised particular events or politically-related products, and were intended to have a very short use-life. Mrs. Douglas also included some of the collection's bumper stickers in this category.

Series V. Buttons

This series is predominantly composed of combination items made of plastic, metal, and paper. Button technology was developed by the Whitehead & Hoag company of Newark, New Jersey, and was used extensively starting in the 1896 Presidential campaign. Celluloid plastic was used exclusively until the 1940s; the buttons frequently are referred to as "celluloid buttons". Many early buttons contained actual photographic portraits. Subsequent development of a lithographic printing technique for all-metal buttons made for less costly manufacture, but also limited the type of imagery that could be applied. Mrs. Douglas also included lapel tabs in this category. Almost all of the items in this series have been cataloged as groups rather than at the item level.

Series VI. Cartoons

This series contains political cartoons and caricatures in a number of mediums. Many 19th century cartoons are in the form of lithographic prints. Some of the later examples include cartoons clipped from newspapers and magazines.

Series VII. Maps & Charts

This series is comprised of a series of graphic materials ranging from representations of national politics (showing which states voted for which candidates, etc.) to political convention floor plans. Some of these items were published in book form, which included large fold-out maps and charts.

Series VIII. Pamphlets

This series contains a wide variety of text-based materials, including soft-covered books (particularly the "text books" issued by parties for particular elections and campaign biographies), smaller pamphlets, periodicals, brochures, and leaflets. Some of the items have frequent illustrations. A limited number of invitations and advertisements also were included in this category.

Series IX. Parades

This series contains a variety of artifacts that were carried in political parades or other public events. They range in size from small pennants to very large parade banners, and in form from replica axes and guns to hats and helmets, kerosene "torch lights", lanterns, and walking sticks. Mrs. Douglas also included a limited amount of materials advertising parade items in this category. There is significant overlap between the "Parades" and "Wearing Apparel" categories.

Series X. Paper Miscellaneous

This category includes a wide variety of paper items intended to have a short use-life, including admission tickets, membership cards, post cards, fundraising letters and brochures, advertising cards, certificates, stationery, and stamps. Mrs. Douglas also included stereocard and cabinet photographs and some of the collection's bumper stickers in this category. Some of the items in this series (particularly post card sets) have been cataloged as groups rather than at the item level.

Series XI. Posters

This series is primarily comprised of large political portrait images intended for public or home display.

Series XII. Prints

This series is primarily comprised of smaller political portrait images intended for public or home display, although Mrs. Douglas also included a number of two-page images from newspaper center-spreads. 19th century lithographs and wood engravings make up a significant proportion of this category.

Series XIII. Ribbons

This series contains a variety of badges, most of which are at least in part textiles. Some of the items are still associated with their original metal pins.

Series XIV. Songbooks

This series includes materials facilitating song performance through provision of song lyrics and/or musical notation. Some of the items are in book form, gathering together several songs, while others are individual handbills.

Series XV. Sheet Music

This series is comprised of sheet music for politically-related songs and instrumentals. Many of these items contain elaborate cover illustrations.

Series XVI. Scrapbooks & Scrapbook Items

This series consists of 47 scrapbooks associated with particular election campaigns, one scrapbook on textiles, and individual items of particular note extracted from the scrapbooks. Mrs. Douglas included a combination of primary sources (particularly portraits but also a portion of a government document signed by Andrew Jackson) and secondary sources (especially newspaper and magazine clippings discussing electoral history) in her scrapbooks. Aside from extracted individual pieces, the scrapbooks will not be digitized by the Political Americana Project.

Series XVII. Trinkets

This series contains a variety of medals, medallions, pins, pendants, and other jewelry forms, including ferrotype portrait pins. Almost all of the items in this series have been cataloged as groups rather than at the item level. Mrs. Douglas artfully arranged these item groupings, frequently incorporating materials from other categories for visual effect.

Series XVIII. Textiles

This series contains a variety of politically-related textile forms, including bandanas, handkerchiefs, and yardage.

Series XIX. Wearing Apparel

This series consists of a variety of politically-related costume items, including neckties, hats and caps, suspenders, and even underwear. There is significant overlap between the "Wearing Apparel" and "Parades" categories.