Manuscripts Division
William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan

Finding aid for
Centennial Exhibition Judge's Notebook, 1876

Finding aid created by
Meg Hixon, June 2012

Summary Information
Title: Centennial Exhibition Judge's Notebook
Creator: Staples, Charles, Jr.
Inclusive dates: 1876
Extent: 1 volume
Abstract:
This partially printed, 208-page volume contains notes kept by Charles Staples, Jr., while he served as a judge of exhibits at the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1876. Staples assessed products in classes 280-284 within the manufactures section, which included items such as files, razors, cutlery, nails, and lumberjack tools. He commented most extensively on a variety of "burglar-proof" safes.
Language: The material is in English
Repository: William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan
909 S. University Ave.
The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190
Phone: 734-764-2347
Web Site: www.clements.umich.edu


Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

1995. M-3119.4.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.

Copyright:

Copyright status is unknown

Processing Information:

Cataloging funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). This collection has been processed according to minimal processing procedures and may be revised, expanded, or updated in the future.

Preferred Citation:

Centennial Exhibition Judge's Notebook, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan


History

Between May 10, 1876, and November 10, 1876, Fairmount Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, hosted the Centennial Exhibition, a world's fair showcasing scientific, technological, and artistic developments in the United States and around the world. The exposition had seven main departments, and each department was further subdivided into more specific classes of goods. Charles Staples, Jr., of Portland, Maine, served as a judge of exhibits in Department II, Manufactures, housed in the exhibition's Main Building. Among the items in Group XV, classes 280-284, he assessed cutlery, nails, hand tools, and other items made of metal.


Collection Scope and Content Note

This partially printed, 208-page volume contains notes kept by Charles Staples, Jr., while serving as a judge of exhibits at the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1876. Staples assessed products in classes 280-284 within the manufactures section, which included items such as files, razors, cutlery, nails, lumberjack tools, and safes.

Charles Staples, Jr., a native of Portland, Maine, attended the Centennial Exhibition sometime between May and November 1876. He served as an exhibit judge for Department II (Manufactures), Group XV, classes 280-284, and recorded his notes in a pre-printed "International Exhibition 1876 Judges' note book." For each exhibit, Staples provided the manufacturers' names, the items' class numbers, the items' places of origin, and his observations. He noted which exhibits won awards, and often mentioned manufacturers who offered low prices. Staples assessed goods from the United States and from a number of foreign countries, which included Germany, Russia, Poland, Switzerland, France, Belgium, Egypt, Jamaica, Norway, Brazil, the Netherlands, Canada, Great Britain, Sweden, and Italy. Many types of items were associated with a particular country; Canada, for example, displayed a large number of axes and other tools used in the lumber industry. Staples also viewed files, scissors and shears, cutlery, axles, nails, hunting and cooking knives, rivets, coffin fittings, locks, and hinges. The final pages hold more extensive notes on safes, many of which were asserted to be "burglar-proof." A brief partial index appears on the last page of the volume.

Subject Terms

    Subjects:
    • Centennial Exhibition (1876 : Philadelphia, Pa.)
    • Manufactures--Awards.
    • Metal products.
    • Philadelphia (Pa.)
    • Safes.
    • Tools.
    Genre Terms:
    • Notebooks.
    • Notes.
    Contents List
    Container / Location Title
    Volume   1  
    Centennial Exhibition Judge's Notebook,  1876 [series]
    Additional Descriptive Data
    Related Materials

    The William L. Clements Library holds additional material related to the Centennial Exhibition and other world's fairs.

    Bibliography

    The Centennial of American Independence: International Exhibition of 1876. 4th rev. ed. Philadelphia: Porter & Coates, 1876.

    United States Centennial Commission. International Exhibition. 1876. Official Catalogue. 2nd and rev. ed. Philadelphia: Published for the Centennial Catalogue Company by John R. Nagle and company, 1876.