Old Stuff >> Monogram Collections

Did you know that people in the early 1900s used to collect monograms??  I didn't, and I think it's so cool! 

Elizabeth Hildreth II, 1914 

Below is the description of this monogram scrapbook page, by Scrapbook: An American History author Jessica Helfand.  I'm still not sure though what these monograms were pulled from-- are the cut from stationery?  Or are the sewn?

Elizabeth Hildreth's book begins with a blurry snapshot of a kewpie doll surrounded by a whirling constellation of monograms, which were themselves highly collectable by both men and women during this period. (The English writer Evelyn Waugh had several such scrapbooks, which may have been compiled by someone other than he: they are meticulous, fastidiously — and densely — arranged on the page.) 

Indeed, while many collectors pasted their specimens into an alphabetical taxonomy, young Hildreth operated under no such apparent editorial constraints. Like many young people, her interest seems to have been based on creating pleasing compositions. Nevertheless, her pages display none of the polite placements that so consistently characterize many other nineteenth century scrapbooks. Collaged elements in Hildreth's book are more playful, and include fragments of letterheads and other typographic miscellany. 

I'm also intrigued by this girl because her name is Elizabeth Hildreth II -- "the second" -- a girl with a generational suffix.  That's cool.  Girls don't usually get to take part in that tradition.  But, it's also intriguing that she's not "Elizabeth Hildreth Jr." -- she's "II."  But that's cool with me.

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