The Materialistic Maiden

Where I sip coffee and judge everyone.

Category: 19th Century Publishers

The entirety of T. B. Peterson’s insufferable advertisement.

It has been requested of me to transcribe the entire infamous advertisement, which I originally posted a fragment of here. While transcribing the rest of this ad, I realized I had not exhausted my disdain for it, as I found only several more irritating qualities about the write-up. I suppose we are now blessed with knowing the entire Peterson store like the back of our hand. However, because he clearly draws out every inch of his store, it makes me question—how did they clean their floors? How did they shelve their books? Were said shelved books in alphabetical order, and by subject? What were the measurements of the books, individually? How much money did he pay his employees? Did the company receive 5-star reviews on Yelp? These are questions that will forever go unanswered. He has packed in everything but the kitchen sink in his ad. Because of his negligence, I will not be buying from his store.

I digress. Here is the rest of this ostentatious advertisement.

 

T. B. PETERSON’S
WHOLESALE AND RETAIL
Cheap Book, Magazine, Newspaper, Publishing
and Bookselling Establishment, is at
No. 102 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia.


T. B. Peterson has the satisfaction to announce to the public, that he has removed to the new and spacious BROWN STONE BUILDING, NO. 102 CHESTNUT STREET, just completed by the city authorities on the Girard Estate, known as the most central and best situation in the city of Philadelphia. As it is the Model Book Store of the Country, we will describe it: It is the largest, most spacious, and best arranged Retail and Wholesale Cheap Book and Publishing Establishment in the United States. It is built, by the Girard Estate, of Connecticut sand-stone, in a richly ornamental style. The whole front of the lower story, except that taken up by the doorway, is occupied by two large plate glass windows, a single plate to each window, costing together over three thousand dollars. On entering and looking up, you find above you a ceiling sixteen feet high, while, on gazing before, you perceive a costa of One Hundred and Fifty-Seven feet. The retail counters extend back for eighty feet, and, being double, afford counter-room of One Hundred and Sixty feet in length. There is also over Three Thousand feet of shelving in the retail part of the store alone. This part is devoted to the retail business, and as it is the most spacious in the country, furnishes also the best and largest assortment of all kinds of books to be found in the country. It is fitted up in the most superb style; the shelvings are all painted in Florence white, with gilded cornices for the book shelves. 

Behind the retail part of the store, at about ninety feet from the entrance, is the counting-room, twenty feet square, railed neatly off, and surmounted by a most beautiful dome of stained glass. In the rear of this is the wholesale and packing department, extending a further distance of about sixty feet, with desks and packing counters for the establishment, etc. etc. All goods are received and shipped from the back of the store, having a fine avenue on the side of Girard Bank for the purpose, leading out to Third Street, so as not to interfere with and block up the front of the store on Chestnut Street. The cellar, of the entire depth of the store, is filled with printed copies of Mr. Peterson’s own publications, printed from his own stereotype plates, of which he generally keeps on hand an edition of a thousand each, making a stock, of his own publications alone, of over three hundred thousand volumes, constantly on hand.

T. B. PETERSON is warranted in saying, that he is able to offer such inducements to the trade, and all others, to favor him with their orders, as cannot be excelled by any book establishment in the country. In proof of this, T. B. PETERSON begs leave to refer to the great facilities of getting stock of all kinds, his dealing direct with all the Publishing Houses in the country, and also to his own long list of Publications, consisting of the best and most popular productions of the most talented authors of the United States and Great Britain, and to his very extensive stock, embracing every work, new or old, published in the United States. 

T. B. PETERSON will be most happy to supply all orders for any books at all, no matter by whom published, in advance of all others, and at publishers’ lowest cash prices. He respectfully invites Country Merchants, Booksellers, Pedlars, Canvassers, Agents, the Trade, Strangers in the city, and the public generally, to call and examine his extensive collection of cheap and standard publications of all kinds, comprising a most magnificent collection of CHEAP BOOKS, MAGAZINES, NOVELS, STANDARD and POPULAR WORKS of all kinds, BIBLES, PRAYER BOOKS, ANNUALS, GIFT BOOKS, ILLUSTRATED WORKS, ALBUMS and JUVENILE WORKS of all kinds, GAMES of all kinds, to suit all ages, tastes, etc. which he is selling to his customers and the public at much lower prices than they can be purchased elsewhere. Being located at No. 102 CHESTNUT Street, the great thoroughfare of the city, and BUYING his stock outright in large quantities, and not selling on commission, he can and will sell them on such terms as will defy all competition. Call and examine our stock, you will find it to be the best, largest and cheapest in the city; and you will also be sure to find all the best, latest, popular, and cheapest works published in this country or elsewhere, for sale at the lowest prices.

Call in person and examine our stock, or send your orders by mail direct, to the CHEAP BOOKSELLING and PUBLISHING ESTABLISHMENT of

T. B. PETERSON,
No. 102 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia.

Advertisements

Verbose Advertisements of the 1800s—or, the Bane of my Existence

Whilst doing my research, I frequently find myself immersed in the newspapers and magazines of the nineteenth-century. These contain an abundance of information, stories—of course, you know what newspapers and magazines are, so you can only imagine the treasures to be found in old periodicals of the day! However, just as our newspapers and magazines are stuffed to the brim with irrelevant advertisements that obnoxiously reprimand us until we buy their products—how do they manage to manipulate us, I cannot begin to say—so did newspapers and periodicals of the 1800s shove this same treatment into their readers’ faces. Although these advertisements did not have the creative “advantage” that ours do today, as colored ink was quite pricey during those days, they still maintain the classic technique of bolded titles and letters, big enough to give the reader a sore eye for weeks, abound with tildes and miniature hands pointing to the actually important information we are supposed to take away from their overtly verbal notice (and this is not an exaggeration).

I feel passionately about the inconvenience called “advertising” in these old newspapers, especially; however, here is a gem from a book I have been reading recently. I do want to note that I have condensed the ad, as it is too long, redundant, and frankly headache inducing for me to want to transcribe the entire thing.

T. B. PETERSON’S
WHOLESALE AND RETAIL
Cheap Book, Magazine, Newspaper, Publishing
and Bookselling Establishment, is at
No. 102 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia.

T. B. PETERSON will be most happy to supply all orders for any books at all, no matter by whom published, in advance of all others, and at publishers’ lowest cash prices. He respectfully invites Country Merchants, Booksellers, Pedlars, Canvassers, Agents, the Trade, Strangers in the city, and the public generally, to call and examine his extensive collection of cheap and standard publications of all kinds, comprising a most magnificent collection of CHEAP BOOKS, MAGAZINES, NOVELS, STANDARD and POPULAR WORKS of all kinds, BIBLES, PRAYER BOOKS, ANNUALS, GIFT BOOKS, ILLUSTRATED WORKS, ALBUMS and JUVENILE WORKS of all kinds, GAMES of all kinds, to suit all ages, tastes, etc. which he is selling to his customers and the public at much lower prices than they can be purchased elsewhere. Being located at No. 102 CHESTNUT Street, the great thoroughfare of the city, and BUYING his stock outright in large quantities, and not selling on commission, he can and will sell them on such terms as will defy all competition. Call and examine our stock, you will find it to be the best, largest and cheapest in the city; and you will also be sure to find all the best, latest, popular, and cheapest works published in this country or elsewhere, for sale at the lowest prices” (The Deer Stalkers, Frank Forester.) I want to note that the publisher of this book is the very same gentleman whose advertisement I just partially scribed. Disgusting.

This particular advertisement especially stuck out to me, only because it reeks of redundancy, clichés, and desperation. The more I repeatedly read the advertisement, the harder my teeth clench. I seethe as I write this. This advertisement, with its despicable over-selling technique and overly-emphasised words, only makes me want to rip the page out and burn it. What is it that makes me despise things such as this so greatly? It drips with the “door-to-door salesman” technique. To those door-to-door salesmen, I say, No, Sir—and close the door on them.

In my next “Ann Trashes Random Advertisements of the 19th Century” post, I will focus on the loathed newspaper ads mentioned earlier on in this post. Until then, feel free to take a look at the gawkish Peterson, Mr. Advertisement Scum himself:

Theophilus_B._Peterson_001

 

The Art Collection of Edward L. Carey

In a previous post, I presented my research and discussed the relatively unknown life of Edward L. Carey, 19th-century Philadelphian publisher and co-partner of Carey & Hart. However, after writing up the post, I became enchanted with the artistic facet of Carey’s life—his patronage of the arts. Furthermore, I took to tracking down the artwork of Carey, as I wanted to see and experience the beauty that surrounded Carey daily—the art that brought him peace of mind and comforted his woes when ill and without company.

Although there is evidence of a book that was published in 1983 entitled The Art Collection of Edward L. Carey (1806-1845): Philadelphia Publisher and Patronby Carolyn Sue Himelick Nutty (perhaps this was her thesis?), I am unable to obtain a copy, nor is there a version online to peek at; however, I was able to find a few or so links to the artwork that Carey owned, intended to own, or simply commissioned. I will only provide links for these works of art as I’d rather not run into copyright infringements.

The Gypsy Girl by Thomas Sully (source)

Mrs. Alexander Bleecker by Edward Greene Malbone (source)

Lord Thomas Babington Macaulay by Henry Inman (source)

The Student (Rosalie Kemble Sully) by Thomas Sully (source)

The Landing of Thorfinn Karlsefni and His Companions in “Vinland” by Emanuel Leutze (source)

Mumble the Peg by Henry Inman (source)

The Return from the Tournament by Thomas Cole (source)

Alfred Langdon Elwyn, Jr. by Thomas Sully (source)

Isabella in Measure for Measure by Thomas Sully (source)

Landscape with Curving River by Thomas Doughty (source) [This is my personal favorite out of the collection of paintings I was able to track down.]

Mrs. Samuel Blodget (Rebecca Smith) by Gilbert Stuart (source)

Mercy’s Dream by Daniel Huntington (source)

It’s safe to say the man had great artistic taste, at least in my humble opinion!

On Edward L. Carey, publisher and partner of Carey & Hart

The other day, I was curiously perusing the internet for photographic/painted/engraved evidence of publishers from the nineteenth-century—consider Ticknor and Fields and Baker and Scribner, two publishing houses well known for publishing such authors as Nathaniel Hawthorne (the former) and Charles Fenno Hoffman (latter). However, one other publishing house has stuck out to me as of late, being Carey & Hart; thus, I took to finding out what I could about these two men. However, while delving into my research, I stumbled across a portrait of Edward L. Carey, of Carey & Hart, which immediately piqued my curiosity about the gentleman.

Sully-Edward Carey (switch color image for black and white).jpg

After feeling inspired by this portrait to find more information about this mysterious publisher, I took to the internet and books to find what I could about Mr. Carey. Unfortunately, I was unable to find a significant amount of information to flesh out a biography-the biography he deserves-but I will do my best to relay everything I was able to find, here.

Edward Carey was born April 7, 1805 to Bridget Flahaven Carey and Philadelphia publisher Mathew Carey of “Carey & Lea.” Although there is not a lot of information regarding Carey’s childhood or young adulthood, it is surmised that he was built in preparation for the publishing scene, as, “When, on the retirement of Mr. Carey [Mathew], in 1824, the firm of Carey & Lea was established, provision was made for the admission of Edward L. Carey, a younger son, when he should attain his majority” (The Publisher’s Weekly, No. 678, January 24, 1885, pg. 70). In 1829, Carey obtained his portion of the publishing house and combined it with Abraham Hart to form the publishing partnership known as Carey & Hart. Thereafter, the company thrived well, publishing works by authors and editors familiar to readers today, including William Cullen Bryant, Rufus Wilmot Griswold (Edgar Allan Poe’s literary executor), and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

Although Hart and Carey thrived well amongst the Philadelphia literary scene, the two were struck by immense tragedy with the decline in health and ultimate death of Carey in 1845. A Maine newspaper, the Maine Cultivator and Hallowell Gazette of June 28, 1845, circulated a Philadelphia report on the death of Carey. According to the original Philadelphian article, Carey passed on June 16 at 11:00AM. Carey was only forty years of age, but he left behind a legacy that Hart would continue carrying on for several years thereafter.

Few news articles give brief, yet intriguing insight into Carey’s life and mind, which will now be discussed. For example, before his death, we learn from the Maine Cultivator that Carey had been elected President of the Academy of Fine Arts, although this was turned down due to ill health. We also learn from the Washington Reporter of June 28, 1845, that Carey was not only a lover of the fine arts, as presumed from my prior statement, but that he also collected art pieces:

…his encouraging voice has been an inspiration to our countrymen by whose creative genius life has been given to the marble and the canvas in foreign schools, and through whom Alleghania has been made one of the chosen homes of Art. Powers sent a few weeks ago his masterpiece from Rome…How much he will be grieved to learn that the very hour in which “Proserpine” reached Philadelphia witnessed the departure of his friend and patron to another world!

Of Carey, this same article continues, “For three years confined to his house by a local disease, Mr. Carey had lived among his paintings and his sculptures, in correspondence with men of genius, and in the society of friends who loved him as a brother.” Of his mind, “…[it] was cast in the finest mould of beauty. The atmosphere of beauty was his element.” Of his character, he is spoken in high regard, as the author of the article states, “When I remember how very warmly all who knew him loved him, I cannot doubt that many hearts will beat more slowly, like our own, at this public calamity.”

Although these insights are brief, they speak volumes of Carey’s character. Such keywords as “genius,” “beauty,” and “love” seem to surround this vague gentleman, giving us enough information to declare the type of man Edward Carey was, being a friend, a “brother,” and one simply too beautiful and endearing for this world.

Camellia's Cottage

Alabama Lifestyle Blog

Beyond Atlas

Diary of an Outworld Artificer

Pretty Books

Fiction, Young Adult and Children's Books & Reviews