Printed Ribbon Badges: An AAS Illustrated Inventory

June 2018

The American Antiquarian Society collects printed materials of all kinds, including ephemera such as printed ribbon badges. The Society’s collection of printed ribbons featured in this illustrated inventory includes over 170 badges ranging in date from 1824 to 1900 and includes ribbons worn to welcome Lafayette during his 1825-26 visit to the United States, mourning badges sold during the funeral of John Quincy Adams, and celebratory ribbons worn during the dedication of the Bunker Hill Monument. In the nineteenth century, ribbon badges were engraved, lithographed, or run through relief letterpress presses. Some printers, after seeing the profitability of printing on silk and other fabrics, soon specialized in the trade and hired skilled artists like Peter Maverick to create the visual images that characterize many of the earliest examples.

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