As we transition to a new year, one of the ways we mark the change is acquiring a new calendar. Even though many of us have moved the tracking of our meetings, tasks, birthdays and other important events to a digital format, I still enjoy a physical calendar, and I especially enjoyed a recent look through the Prints & Photographs Division collections at calendars from different time periods
The production of calendars as promotional items for businesses or services goes back into the 19th century and continues to this day. It’s also interesting to find calendars that can be re-used because the dates now line up in 2021. These first two lovely examples from 1897 offer that opportunity:
While these full year promotional calendars for beer in 1897 and “celebrated fine shoes” in 1886 can also mark time in 2021:
Breweries, insurance companies, beauty products, newspapers and printers are among those who created the calendars below.
My favorite may be the one below, even though it is the least colorful one. This promotional calendar advertising Success sweat collars for horses features the equine subject penning a letter supporting the product and the Horses’ Protection Society.
- Flip through various calendar-related images in the Prints and Photographs Online Catalog.
- The first two calendars featured here are from poster calendars that each featured the work of a single artist. Enjoy additional months from the work of Louis Rhead and of Edward Penfield.
- Read some fascinating blog posts from other divisions of the Library of Congress about calendar systems: