To learn how advertising reflects the patterns of American life, students and scholars need large, comprehensive collections of advertisements to help them trace the changes that Americans have undergone over the decades. Collections in the University Archives of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, along with those in the Communications Library provide an important source for the study of advertising.
The University admissions, development, intercollegiate athletics, public affairs and student affairs offices publish advertising materials. Student publications and yearbooks contain advertisements directed toward student readers. The Advertising Department records and Charles H. Sandage and S. Watson Dunn papers relate to instruction and graduate research, and College of Communication records reflect the development of a curriculum in advertising.
The James Evans papers contain Aubrey, Moore and Wallace's International Harvester truck and industrial power advertisements (1924-49). The papers of agricultural engineering professors, Karl Ekblaw, Emil Lehmann, and Ray I. Shawl include their collections of equipment sales and maintenance literature. Engineering Manuals and Catalogs include 25 cubic feet of laboratory and technological product literature (1944-84). Alumnus and playwright Samson Raphaelson (class of 1917) wrote advertising copy in the 1920s. A collection of 106 French World War I posters exemplifies the use of graphic arts to persuade and deliver national and ethnic stereotypes. The American Library Association's Literacy Campaign Advertisements include reports on television spots and newspaper and magazine clippings (1985-86), and the ALA Archives contain examples of poster advertisements from World War I to the present.
Among the major campaigns represented in the Ad Council Archives are Red Cross, saving bonds, forest fire prevention, the American economic system, traffic safety, aid to higher education, environmentalism, and the battles against drugs, drunk driving, and AIDS.
The Archives contain campaign promotional materials and copies of thousands of ads in nearly all major advertising formats: magazines, newspapers, radio, television, billboards and posters. The archives also tell the story behind the ads. Among the 130 cubic feet are 27 record series of office files, board and committee minutes, publications, and campaign files that document the development of advertising campaigns and the decision-making process in the selection of campaigns and preparation of materials. The Ad Council Archives have been used by researchers studying wartime advertising, cultural history, and the development of advertisisng concerns.
For specific inquiries about holdings and access, contact:
University Archives 19 Library 1408 West Gregory Drive Urbana, IL 61801 Telephone (217) 333-0798 Fax (217) 333-2214
Last updated May 10, 2007