Title: The Centennial Exposition, Philadelphia 1876


United States Centennial Commission. International Exhibition 1876, Official Catalogue, Part II. Philadelphia: John R. Nagle & Co., 1876.

United States Centennial Commission. International Exhibition 1876, Official Catalogue, Part II. Philadelphia: John R. Nagle & Co., 1876.

The Library Company of Philadelphia holds material relating to the Centennial Exhibition in multiple areas of its collection. Its collection of books and printed material contains official catalogues and proceedings, guidebooks, and published personal accounts relating to the Centennial fair and preceding planning activities. It also includes advertising pamphlets from participating businesses, as well as a few Centennial-related broadsides and playbills. Newspapers and periodicals contemporary to the era, such as Harper’s Weekly, are also available. See also Centennial and World’s Columbian Expositions, 1876, 1893, part of the McAllister Collection (McA 5758.F, folder 1). Most of these items are cataloged in WolfPAC, the Library Company’s online catalog (narrow the field to search to “Subject” and search “Centennial Exhibition” as a phrase).

The Centennial Ephemera Collection consists of approximately 1,000 circulars, advertising cards, broadsides, and sales catalogs generated by the many companies that exhibited their goods at the fair. Other documents include Centennial admission tickets, railroad timetables, and a program. The collection is arranged in six volumes.

The David Doret Collection of Centennial Ephemera consists of approximately one hundred circulars, price lists, advertising cards, stationery, and pamphlets relating to the Centennial Exhibition. Other documents include guidebooks for visitors, maps, a Centennial Board of Finance letterhead, a Centennial award seal, and programs.

The Print and Photograph Department holds hundreds of items depicting the fair grounds, buildings, and exhibits. These materials include photographs by the Centennial Photographic Company (both loose and in an album), large lithographic bird’s-eye views, engravings, certificates, cartes de visite, stereographs, maps, trade cards, a jigsaw puzzle, commemorative prints, a printed handkerchief, and an accordion-folded pictorial souvenir. Late 19th- and early 20th-century images of some of the buildings are also available. Several of these items are cataloged in WolfPAC and in ImPAC, the Library Company’s online catalog for digital collections. Separate finding aids exist for the Centennial Photographic Company collection and the trade cards.

Centennial International Exhibition...engraving on textile

Centennial International Exhibition. Fairmount Park, Philadelphia 1776 1876, engraving on textile, Dusseldorf: [1876].

The Art and Artifact Collection contains a bronze Centennial medal (Inv. #184) and commemorative scissors (Inv. #834).


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