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The Joseph Magnin Poster Collection, ca. 1963-1968
#355

(.3 cubic feet: 1 (.5) F/O)

by Jennifer Snyder, August 1997

History

In 1913, Joseph Magnin (son of Isaac Magnin, founder of the I. Magnin stores) founded a department store bearing his name.  In 1967, the chain reached its peak popularity with over 32 stores. It had become one of the premier luxury department store chains in the country. The Magnin family sold the chain to Amfac Corp. in 1969.  In September 1984, bankruptcy closed the remaining 24 stores.

During the 1960s, Betty Brader (b. 1923) became one of the chief illustrators of Joseph Magnin posters; this collection is comprised primarily of her work.  She also worked for Neiman-Marcus, Saks, Franklin Simon, and various advertising agencies.  Brader won numerous awards throughout her career for her innovative illustrations.  Her style of fashion illustration is copied widely today by fashion illustrators.  The posters she produced for Joseph Magnin were highly acclaimed in the San Francisco Bay Area.  Brader died in 1986 after a long illness.

Scope and Content

103 illustrated advertisements, posters, and store decorations: 51 color, 52 black and white.  This collection is arranged in six series as follows:

Series 1:  CLOTHING, ca. 1963-1968

Subseries A:  Fashion ca. 1963-1968 Includes dresses, evening gowns, pants, blouses, business suits, and casual outfits.

Subseries B:  Outerwear ca. 1963-1968 Raincoats, wool coats and jackets, fur coats and stoles.

Subseries C:  Lingerie, Sleepwear, and Loungewear ca. 1963-1968

Subseries D:  Accessories ca. 1963-1968 Shoes, hats, and jewelry. 

Series 2:  “FASHION PERSPECTIVES,” 1967 Arranged alphabetically by person’s last name. Each poster features a buyer for a specific department for the Joseph Magnin department stores.  

Series 3:  COSMETICS, ca. 1963-1968 Max Factor, Revlon, sunscreen, and moisturizer are all featured products of these posters.

Series 4:  STORE OPENINGS, ca. 1963-1968 Features locations of the new stores.

Series 5:  SPECIAL APPEARANCES, ca. 1963-1968 Joseph Magnin store location and times of designer and make-up artist special appearances.

Series 6:  HOLIDAY, ca. 1963-1968 Posters produced for Christmas and New Year’s.

Provenance

This collection was donated to the Archives Center of the National Museum of American History in November 1984 by members of the Magnin family.

Related Collections

The Archives Center holds several collections dealing with women in business (#423 Estelle Ellis Collection, #509 Brownie Wise, #631 Dorothy Shaver), costume design (#729 Virginia "Jimmie" Booth Collection), and advertising (#59 N W Ayer Advertising Agency Records).

Container List

Box

Folder

 

 

 

Series 1:  CLOTHING, ca. 1963-1968
Subseries A:  Fashion ca. 1963-1968

1

1

Fashion

 

 

 

 

 

Subseries B:  Outerwear ca. 1963-1968

1

2

Outerwear

 

 

 

 

 

Subseries C:  Lingerie, Sleepwear, and Loungewear ca. 1963-1968

1

3

Lingerie, Sleepwear, and Loungewear

 

 

 

 

 

Subseries D:  Accessories ca. 1963-1968

1

4

Accessories: Shoes, Hats, Jewelry

 

 

 

 

 

Series 2:  “FASHION PERSPECTIVES,” 1967

1

5

“Fashion Perspectives”

 

 

 

 

 

Series 3:  COSMETICS, ca. 1963-1968

1

6

Cosmetics

 

 

 

 

 

Series 4: STORE OPENINGS, ca. 1963-1968

1

7

Store Openings

 

 

 

 

 

Series 5:  SPECIAL APPEARANCES ca. 1963-1968

1

8

Special Appearances

 

 

 

 

 

Series 6: HOLIDAY, ca. 1963-1968

1

9

Holiday

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E-mail: archivescenter@si.edu
Revised:  June 19, 2003