Matchbooks; Tiny paper stories

A good matchbook cover can give the reader’s imagination a delightful turn of story. Paper mavens adore the use of smaller spaces to tell big adventures and matchbooks are one avenue that allows the telling of grand epics in the American 20th century. The most plentiful supply that I usually see are the Hotel & restaurant matchbook covers. When flattened give a complete picture, described as similar to billboards for advertising such as this one for Alamo Plaza Hotel Courts;


With the huge shift to an ease of transportation American’s filled the highways and byways as traveling became common place for business and pleasure. Advertising seems to have flourished madly in the same era. Probably because they were given away free and in such plentiful amounts there are still a nice variety of matchbooks (and covers) available. Collectors, according to Collectors Weekly, sort within the range of matchbook companies and eras. I personally am attracted to color and graphics as well anything to add to my collection of Detroit paper. I’m not a phillumenist since my hobby tends to be more broadly about paper and not matchbooks alone. Anything about Detroit is of particular interest, again because it tells the history of the region:


The Detroit Bank & Trust Company, now Comerica, the oldest bank in Michigan with the date 1849 is interesting since Michigan became a state in 1837. So only a few short years later this banking firm settled in the region and is still operational. I”m adding “Detroit and its Banks” by Arthur Woodford to my reading list! This is the trouble I find with a broader range of collecting, one interesting item leads to another.

So remember, treasure those paper cuts…..


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