Scrapbooks: Writing With Scissors - Ellen Gruber Garvey
May 10, 2012
Speaking of Pinterest (I was, actually) I came across this blog post about the history of scrapbooking. I urge you to read the whole thing, but here's a snippet:
"May 5 is National Scrapbooking Day. Like National Fig Newton Day or National Golf Month, its purpose is mainly commercial and it was unsurprisingly started by an album company. Scrapbook making is hugely popular and profitable. Stores that sell scrapbooking supplies use the day to sponsor scrapping gatherings or crops where scrapbookers (nearly all women) get together. They spread their projects out at tables with equipment for diecutting, embossing, and distressing paper (to make it look old). Tips about layout and technique are shared as they paste family pictures and memorabilia into their scrapbooks.
The men and women who compiled scrapbooks in the nineteenth century had a different idea of what a scrapbook looked like and what it was for. Abraham Lincoln, Sarah Bernhardt, Thomas Jefferson, and Susan B. Anthony all made scrapbooks. Like the thousands of other nineteenth-century scrapbook makers, they created scrapbooks from their reading, mainly for their own and their contemporaries’ uses. Their records — without family photos — are intimate and revealing. These scrapbook makers saw their interests reflected in the newspaper. Worried about losing the poems, articles, and stories that spoke to them, they made scrapbooks of them — sometimes hundreds of volumes."
1878 Agricultural Reports repurposed as a scrapbook. Page toward the end shows underlying text. Source: collection of Ellen Gruber Garvey
The book is Writing With Scissors: American Scrapbooks from the Civil War to the Harlem Renaissance.
The blog post this I've quoted is HERE
Another Ellen Gruber Garvey article on scrapbooks, Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Appropriation is HERE