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Trade Literature Collection
Image: Electrice Electric Refrigeration leaflet
Source: Museum Victoria
Museum Victoria's Trade Literature Collection is the largest and most diverse collection of its type in any Australian public institution. Comprising about 50,000 items, representing more than 5,000 Australian and overseas manufacturers, the collection documents manufactured products made, marketed or used in Australia between 1850 and the present.
Trade Literature can be broadly defined as any text or text-and-image-based publication produced by manufacturers or distributors to promote, market, explain or maintain their product lines. It includes items such as promotional brochures, advertisements, product catalogues, repair and maintenance manuals, price lists, accessory lists, parts lists, sales bulletins, specification sheets and technical bulletins.
Advertisements are defined as a specific category of trade literature that appears as an insert within a more general book, newspaper, journal, trade directory or other publication. Advertisements usually occupy only a single page or a portion of a page within a larger publication, although in some cases they may run to several pages.
The Trade Literature Collection is used by museum staff and external researchers to:
- Provide items for exhibition, display and reproduction.
- Document aspects of Australian technological development in areas in which the museum is unable to develop and maintain extensive three-dimensional artefact collections.
- Identify and date technological artefacts found or used in Australia.
- Provide insights into the social and technological context in which different types of products were originally developed and marketed.
- Provide insight into changes in marketing techniques and graphic design used in the promotion of products over time.
- Examine processes of innovation, industrial design and the way companies have promoted their new product ideas.
- Examine what technologies were available in Australia at different periods and the process of technological transfer from overseas.
- Provide information about the relative cost of technological products and how they were marketed.
- Understand in more detail how particular technologies worked or were designed and manufactured.
- Research the impact and distribution of different technologies in Australia in a historical context.
- Provide information that can be used in the restoration, conservation and interpretation of technological artefacts.
Items per page: 10 50 (showing 11 - 20) 543 items
Accounts book used by John Lawrey from December 1908 to 3rd April 1930 which covers his various businesses including being a nurseryman, and an agent for Mt Lyell Mining & Railway Co Lt ...Images: 4
Trade publication: 'The Sunshine Harvester Works', 1926. Octavo sized stapled booklet, 14 pages, illustrated with enhanced black and white photographs and line drawings. Cover of bookl ...Images: 14
A book format price list of Farm Machinery in Victoria. This publication has a soft cardboard cover with decorative printing around the title. The book is intended for use by Agents an ...Images: 2
The catalogue covers a range of products including a detailed descriptions of their functions and possible uses. It also outlines that the "Sun Twin-Disc Cultivator has been "specifica ...Images: 3
Rare example of early 1960s ephemeral literature promoting the post World War II suburban dream of an 'affordable' brick-veneer home. This flyer, aimed at new home buyers, offers potent ...Images: 1
Black and white photograph of the Poplar Station Signal Box taken in 1906. Poplar station was operated by the North London Railway Company (1850-1922). This photograph belonged to Herbe ...Images: 2
Heavily used cloth covered booklet setting out rules for conduct of employees and telegraph signalling procedures for the North London Railway Company (1850-1922). This copy belonged to ...Images: 1
Presents a comprehensive listing of the benefits of the engine-functioned pickup bailer . It emphasises the benefits of local manufacture, particularly the technology of the automatic ...Images: 2