Fire Insurance Map Typography from 1880-1920, Pt.2

7 Jun

These are the title pages to fire insurance booklets for individual cities. They instilled a sense of pride in one’s city, but also glorified the company and it’s offering. These are by far the most attractive bits of collateral I’ve ever seen. My insurance company’s branding sucks compared to this :/  See other cities’ title pages inside the post!

“Sanborn’s fire insurance enterprise produced not only excellent and detailed urban maps, but they also maintained an elegant aesthetic in the headings and legends on the maps themselves, and in the title pages of the (larger) city volumes. The ornamental flair is diverse and lends an air of individuality and refinement to each of the towns surveyed.

Although this sort of artistic embellishment was unlikely to have increased map sales on its own, it’s a charming addition which would have perhaps made the purchasers feel a sense of pride and a little more secure about their own unique town. And it’s certainly in keeping with the cartographic tradition of decorative trimmings.” Via Bibliodyssey.


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