Lower Falls of the Yellowstone, from the Transparencies series (N137)

Lower Falls of the Yellowstone

Description

Between 18975 and the 1940s, cigarette companies embraced the trend of including collectible trading cards in the cigarette packs that they sold. These cigarette cards often reflect the popular culture of the late 19th century and offer compelling insights into the social norms and popular thinking at the time. Popular themes were famous actresses, models, film stars, notorious baseball players, nature, military heroes, and other quintessential “American” icons. A major producer of these collectible cards was the tobacco manufacturer W. Duke, Sons, & Co.

This particular card is from the “Transparencies” series (N137), issued in an unnumbered set of 25 cards to promote Honest Long Cut Tobacco. The image depicts the Lower Falls of the Yellowstone in muted, earthy tones, and features the waterfalls and the surrounding cliffs, stream, and foliage. As part of the “Transparencies” series, the image was printed on very thin paper, intended to be translucent when held up to light. The reproduction of the Yellowstone on this collectible card promoted the notion of the national parks as classic American icons, while also supporting the notion of the parks as “collectible items.” The national parks were originally formed as recreational spaces designed for the enjoyment of the elite classes. The “collectability” of Yellowstone on a cigarette card subtly opposed the prior notion of the national parks as elite recreational spaces, since it allowed any cigarette smoker to carry a miniature reproduction of Yellowstone in his or her pocket. This collectible nature--as well as the transparency of the image and diminutive size of the cigarette card--also contradicted the concept of the national parks as a sacred place for the sublime to manifest itself in nature, since these factors worked together to subtract from nature’s intimidating power and grandeur.

MetaData

Dublin Core

Title

Lower Falls of the Yellowstone, from the Transparencies series (N137)

Subject

Lower Falls of the Yellowstone, Yellowstone, print

Description

Between 18975 and the 1940s, cigarette companies embraced the trend of including collectible trading cards in the cigarette packs that they sold. These cigarette cards often reflect the popular culture of the late 19th century and offer compelling insights into the social norms and popular thinking at the time. Popular themes were famous actresses, models, film stars, notorious baseball players, nature, military heroes, and other quintessential “American” icons. A major producer of these collectible cards was the tobacco manufacturer W. Duke, Sons, & Co.

This particular card is from the “Transparencies” series (N137), issued in an unnumbered set of 25 cards to promote Honest Long Cut Tobacco. The image depicts the Lower Falls of the Yellowstone in muted, earthy tones, and features the waterfalls and the surrounding cliffs, stream, and foliage. As part of the “Transparencies” series, the image was printed on very thin paper, intended to be translucent when held up to light. The reproduction of the Yellowstone on this collectible card promoted the notion of the national parks as classic American icons, while also supporting the notion of the parks as “collectible items.” The national parks were originally formed as recreational spaces designed for the enjoyment of the elite classes. The “collectability” of Yellowstone on a cigarette card subtly opposed the prior notion of the national parks as elite recreational spaces, since it allowed any cigarette smoker to carry a miniature reproduction of Yellowstone in his or her pocket. This collectible nature--as well as the transparency of the image and diminutive size of the cigarette card--also contradicted the concept of the national parks as a sacred place for the sublime to manifest itself in nature, since these factors worked together to subtract from nature’s intimidating power and grandeur.

Creator

N/A

Source

Metropolitan Museum of Art (Met Museum)

Publisher

W. Duke, Sons & Co. to promote Honest Long Cut Tobacco

Date

ca. 1880

Contributor

Carina Hahn

Rights

Public Domain

Relation

Prints and Drawings

Format

10.6 × 6.4 cm (4 3/16 × 2 1/2 in.)

Language

En-US

Type

Print

Identifier

63.350.207.137.5

Coverage

Yellowstone

Alternative Title

Lower Falls of the Yellowstone

Date Created

February 21, 2018

Date Modified

April 1, 2018

Access Rights

Public domain

License

N/A

Medium

Commercial color lithograph

Bibliographic Citation

https://metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/644371

Spatial Coverage

Yellowstone

Temporal Coverage

19th Century

Accrual Method

The Jefferson R. Burdick Collection, Gift of Jefferson R. Burdick

Provenance

Jefferson R. Burdick; Donor: Jefferson R. Burdick

Rights Holder

http://www.metmuseum.org/information/terms-and-conditions

Citation

N/A, “Lower Falls of the Yellowstone, from the Transparencies series (N137) ,” Park Culture, accessed March 2, 2021, http://parkculture.org/items/show/149.

Collection

Geolocation