Collection, ca. 1850-1890

Magnus, Charles, 1826-1900


approximately 240 items : illustrations (some color).
This collection consists of a variety of lithographed letter sheets, envelopes, song sheets, prints, some cards with pictures of Confederate officers, board games (printed on paper thinner than boards, however), and a 1858 circular advertising board games and playing cards available from Magnus & Co. Most of the letter sheets and prints are views of cities, mainly places located in the northeastern part of the United States or the eastern half of Canada, including New York City, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Niagara Falls. Most of the envelopes and song sheets and some of the letter sheets have patriotic themes related to the Civil War. These items are often decorated with state seals, eagles, soldiers, and images of George Washington. Games include "New Game of Snake," "Comical Game of Pigs and Kittens," and "Running the Blockage," a Civil War game. Many of the illustrations are in color; a hand coloring process was used.
Charles Magnus was a print publisher, map dealer, book seller, and stationer working in New York City from 1850 to 1899. He issued over one thousand different lettersheets, maps, song sheets, envelopes, and prints during his career. Born in 1826 in Elberfeld, Germany, he emigrated with his family to New York City shortly before 1850. He learned the printing business from his brother, Emil. During the Civil War, Magnus produced more than 700 patriotic envelopes and over 300 illustrated song sheets. After the war, he expanded his work to include prints, games, reward of merit cards, advertising, and custom printing. He died in 1900.
Games are described individually. To find type fin rid 92-A535.
The Prints Study Collection at Winterthur also has Magnus material.
Patriotic envelopes printed by Magnus are also found in Col. 333 at this repository.
Finding aid listing each of the items and describing images available at this repository.

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