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The Seagram Spotlight photograph collection
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The Seagram Spotlight photograph collection

Accession 1996.310

Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department, Hagley Museum and Library


PO Box 3630
Wilmington, Delaware, 19807
302-658-2400
research@hagley.org

Finding aid prepared by Barbara Hall and encoded by Laurie Rizzo in 2013., 2013

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2013-09-05T14:01-0400

Finding aid prepared using best local practices and Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Cite items for this collection in the following format:
[Description and dates], Box/folder number, The Seagram Spotlight photograph collection (Accession 1996.310), Hagley Museum and Library, Wilmington, DE 19807

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Descriptive Summary

Title: The Seagram Spotlight photograph collection
Dates: 1947-1957
Accession Number: 1996.310
Creator: Seagram (Joseph E.) and Sons, Inc.
Extent: 3.25 linear feet
Physical Description: approximately 2300 photographic prints : b&w ; 8 x10 in. and smaller. 237 negatives : b&w ; 4 x 5 in. and smaller
Language of Material: English
Repository: Hagley Museum and Library: Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department
Abstract: The Bronfman family of Canada acquired the Joseph E. Seagram & Sons Co. of Waterloo, Ontario, in 1927. By the 1950s, Seagram was one of the world's largest alcoholic beverage firms. This collection is composed of photographs used as illustrations in The Seagram Spotlight, a "monthly house organ published by and for the staff of Seagram Distiller's Corporation," according to the 20th anniversary issue (December 1936).
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Administrative Information


Access Restrictions

Access restricted; please contact staff in advance of research visit at askhagley@hagley.org for instructions on how to apply for access to material.

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Historical Note

The Bronfman family of Canada acquired the Joseph E. Seagram & Sons Co. of Waterloo, Ontario, in 1927. In 1934, a year after the repeal of Canada's prohibition, the company entered the American market with a line of blended liquors. Seagram's success in the United States has been attributed to two things--quality products and savvy advertising. The coincidental development of photo-​journalism (in the form of Life Magazine--begun in 1936--and its competitors) gave Seagram's huge national advertising outlets. Advertising for Seagram Five and Seven Crowns whiskey and other Seagram products was supplemented by point of purchase displays in liquor stores and bars. By the 1950s, Seagram was one of the world's largest alcoholic beverage firms.

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Scope and Content

This collection is composed of photographs used as illustrations in The Seagram Spotlight, a "monthly house organ published by and for the staff of Seagram Distiller's Corporation," according to the 20th anniversary issue (December 1936). Only images from the following issues are represented: 1947 March-April, May-June, July-August, September-​October, November-​December; 1948 January-​February, March-April, May-June, July-August, September-​October, November-​December; 1949 January-​February, March-April; 1955 March, May, August, October; 1957 February, April, June, September, December.

The magazine targeted Seagram's national salesforce and Seagram distributors who were collectively addressed as "Seagramerica." Its editorial content featured information about company news including promotions and sales meetings; creative liquor store displays in "Good Ideas" which were contributed by associate editors from different regional sale divisions for each issue; information about advertising and marketing campaigns; articles about bars and restaurants that featured Seagram liquor; and personal interest items about salesmen. As well as recording the alcoholic beverage industry, some of the photographs provide a general documentation of 20th century American culture. This can be seen, for example, in articles titled "The Shopping Center: A New Retailing Phenomenon" (1957), "Who Say's It's a Man's World?" (1957) and "Negro Affairs which Attract Seagram Sponsorship" (1955); images of bars advertising the ownership of televisions; bar signs welcoming presidential conventioneers (1948); drive-through liquor stores; campaigns to promote responsible drinking; salesmen and spouses dressed for business dinners; and even racist advertising signs by an individual bar owner in Wisconsin.

In addition to the photographs used in Seagram Spotlight, there are some miscellaneous images of liquor stores in the Wilmington and Dover, Delaware, areas, ca. 1948; images of liquor store display windows, interiors, and internal displays; images of bars and restaurants; some images related to Kessler Whiskey; some undated charts and graphs of sale and display statistics of consumer marketing research from the following sources: the Advertising Institute , DuPont [Company] Impulse Purchasing Study, George A. Hormel Co., and A.C. Nielson Company; some photographs of an unidentified Seagram plant that show views of the analysis of ingredients by a chemist, whiskey production, and the packaging and shipping of Seven Crown whiskey; a science symposium held in 1957 at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel which included many well-known scientists and TV journalists.

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Series Descriptions and Inventory

Box
1 New Bottle Rack to Help Push Gin Sales, 1947 March-1947 April
Box
1 Bill Gramm goes all Out in "Dimes" Drive, 1947 March-1947 April
Box
1 Seagram's Goes to the Mardi Gras in New Orleans, 1947 March-1947 April
Box
1 Seagram Brands Sail the High Seas, 1947 March-1947 April
Box
1 Seagram Steals the Show at the Tucson Rodeo, 1947 March-1947 April
Box
1 Spotlight Goes to a Crown Club Meeting, 1947 March-1947 April
Box
1 New Technique of Stroboscopic Photography, 1947 March-1947 April
Box
1 News from Seagramerica, 1947 March-1947 April
Box
1 These Windows have W.A., 1947 March-1947 April
Box
1 Good Idea!, 1947 March-1947 April
Box
1 Rancheros Vistadores, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 Retailers Teach Consumers the ABC's of A.B. Gin, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 Gin-uine Activities, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 Tents, Menu stickers, Display are Newest Sales Aids, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 People and Places in the News, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 Step Up and Meet, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 Distributor Sends Men to Seagram's Distilleries, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 Eber Brothers Rewards Men, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 Sales Meetings Held for Connecticut Wholesalers, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 News from Seagramerica, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 Good Idea!, 1947 May-1947 June
Box
1 California Retailer Runs Complete Campaign, 1947 July-1947 August
Box
1 Gin-uine Activites, 1947 July-1947 August
Box
1 Have You Heard of the "Salty Dog?," 1947 July-1947 August
Box
1 Steamboats Sale on Seagram Sales Trip, 1947 July-1947 August
Box
1 People and Places in the News, 1947 July-1947 August
Box
1 Very Obviously - a Very Timely Campaign for Seagram's V.O., 1947 July-1947 August
Box
1 Seagram Plans Promotions for [American] Legion Convention, 1947 July-1947 August
Box
1 California Retailer Runs Complete Campaign, 1947 July-1947 August
Box
1 News from Seagramerica, 1947 July-1947 August
Box
1 Good Idea!, 1947 July-1947 August
Box
1 Distributors' Activities, 1947 September-1947 October
Box
1 What Makes a Successful Seagram Salesman?, 1947 September-1947 October
Box
1 Seagram Displays Featured in California Super Store, 1947 September-1947 October
Box
1 Parade of Sales Promotion Ads, 1947 September-1947 October
Box
1 Four Legionnaires Win Ford Automobiles, 1947 September-1947 October
Box
1 News from Seagramerica, 1947 September-1947 October
Box
1 Good Idea!, 1947 September-1947 October
Box
1 Distributors' Activities, 1947 November-1947 December
Box
1 New Sportsman's Calendars for 1948, 1947 November-1947 December
Box
1 Gay Seagram Displays Fill Holiday Windows, 1947 November-1947 December
Box
1 People and Places in the News, 1947 November-1947 December
Box
1 What's New, 1947 November-1947 December
Box
1 National Sales Meeting Held for Ancient Bottle Gin, 1947 November-1947 December
Box
1 Testimonial Dinner in Honor of Jules Merson, 1947 November-1947 December
Box
1 News from Seagramerica, 1947 November-1947 December
Box
1 Good Idea!, 1947 November-1947 December
Box
2 Distributors' Activities, 1948 January-1948 February
Box
2 People and Places in the News, 1948 January-1948 February
Box
2 Throughout the Land, Seagram was the Yuletide Brand, 1948 January-1948 February
Box
2 News from Seagramerica, 1948 January-1948 February
Box
2 Good Idea!, 1948 January-1948 February
Box
2 Promotions Announced in Several Divisions, 1948 March-1948 April
Box
2 Arkansas Distributors Puts on a Sales Campaign, 1948 March-1948 April
Box
2 Mardi Gras, 1948 March-1948 April
Box
2 Seagrams Steals the Show at the Tucson Rodeo, 1948 March-1948 April
Box
2 Original Ancient Bottle Re-introduced at Gun Meetings, 1948 March-1948 April
Box
2 Distributors' Activities, 1948 March-1948 April
Box
2 News from Seagramerica, 1948 March-1948 April
Box
2 Good Idea!, 1948 March-1948 April
Box
2 Market Surveys, 1948 May-1948 June
Box
2 Distributors' Activities, 1948 May-1948 June
Box
2 Southwestern Drug of Texas, 1948 May-1948 June
Box
2 What's Your Hobby?, 1948 May-1948 June
Box
2 The Golden Spike, 1948 May-1948 June
Box
2 People and Places in the News and Personnel Promotions, 1948 May-1948 June
Box
2 Good Idea!, 1948 May-1948 June
Box
3 New Sales Records Set in Eastern Division Contest, 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 Seagram Painting on Display at Wells Fargo Bank, 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 All Roads Lead to Seagram Convention Cities, 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 People and Places in the News, 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 Colorful Promotions Created for "Golden Spike" Campaign, 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 Distributor Profile: McCarthy-Hicks of Maryland, 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 Victor Fischel Promoted to Presidency, 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 Displays Decorate Retail Outlets in Philadelphia (Presidential Conventions), 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 Distributors' Activities, 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 Miscellaneous, 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 Good Idea!, 1948 July-1948 August
Box
3 All That Glitters May Not Be Gold, But Sparkling Units Get Brands Sold, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 "The Song is Over But the Melody Lingers On," 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 Creation of Displays and Sales Aids, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 "A Golden Opportunity," 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 Behind the Scenes, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 "A Sure Thing," 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 Seagram Advertisements are Easily and Rapidly Recognized, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 Remember these Names?, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 Consumer Demand is Created by Advertising and Sales Promotion, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 Seagram's Place in the New America, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 The Science of Selling, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 People and Places in the News, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 Western Distributing Moves into New Headquarters, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 McKesson & Robbins Holds National Sales Campaign, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 Good Ideas from the Field!, 1948 September-1948 October
Box
3 Journal Square [Jersey City] Landmark, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
3 Distributor Uses Post Cards to Create Consumer Traffic, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
3 Rathjen Brothers Celebrates 66 Years in Business, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
3 Jobber Runs Retailer Meeting, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
3 Giant 7 Featured at Rhode Island Racetrack, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
3 What's New, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
3 Seagram Embarks Upon a Program Designed to Develop Full Abilities of Salesmen, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
3 Seagram Post Awards Featured at [American] Legion Conference in Miami, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
3 Sportman's Calendar for 1949, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
3 People and Places in the News, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
3 Good Idea!, 1948 November-1948 December
Box
4 What's Your Hobby?, 1949 January-1949 February
Box
4 Retailer Uses Newspaper Space, 1949 January-1949 February
Box
4 People and Places in the News, 1949 January-1949 February
Box
4 The Central Division Rolls Up its Sleeves, 1949 January-1949 February
Box
4 Famous American Bars: The Top of the Mark [San Francisco], 1949 January-1949 February
Box
4 Seagram [American] Legion News, 1949 January-1949 February
Box
4 A Continuing Campaign of Display Installations is Backbone, 1949 January-1949 February
Box
4 Selling Seagram's in the "Wonder State" [Arkansas], 1949 January-1949 February
Box
4 Distributor's Activities, 1949 January-1949 February
Box
4 Good Idea!, 1949 January-1949 February
Box
4 Retailer Reports, 1949 March-1949 April
Box
4 People and Places in the News, 1949 March-1949 April
Box
4 Mardi Gras, 1949 March-1949 April
Box
4 What's Your Hobby?, 1949 March-1949 April
Box
4 Good Ideas from the Field!, 1949 March-1949 April
Box
4 Distillers Distributing of Minneapolis, 1949 March-1949 April
Box
4 This Is Your LBI, 1949 March-1949 April
Box
5 Foreign Language Advertising, 1955 March
Box
5 Seagram's Talking Display, 1955 March
Box
5 Fashion Show Abroad Ship Launches a Columbus Rum Campaign on a National Scale, 1955 March
Box
5 Arizona Distributor Embarks on Holiday Public Relations Program, 1955 March
Box
5 Shelf Program Produces Sales in Aurora, Illinois, 1955 March
Box
5 General Liquors of South Bend, Indiana, 1955 March
Box
5 Chicago's Edgewater Beach Hotel Increased Its Seagram's Gin Sales, 1955 March
Box
5 The April Gift Campaign, 1955 March
Box
5 Postscript to a Promotion, 1955 March
Box
5 Headshots Used in March 1955 Spotlight, 1955 March
Box
5 Good Ideas from the Field!, 1955 March
Box
5 Atomized Martini, 1955 May
Box
5 Illinois Retailers Express Gratitude, 1955 May
Box
5 Imagination at Work, 1955 May
Box
5 Old and Loyal Friends, 1955 May
Box
5 Spotlight Congratulates, 1955 May
Box
5 A Firm with 27 Assistant Sales Managers, 1955 May
Box
5 Famous American Restaurants: The Green Gables, 1955 May
Box
5 Displays Designed to Produce Dividends, 1955 May
Box
5 Two of the Men Who Didn't Win in the Brand Name Contest, 1955 May
Box
5 Pages from Some of the Winning Presentations, 1955 May
Box
5 A Barrage of Seabreeze Advertising, 1955 May
Box
5 This Man Will Set A New sales Record, 1955 May
Box
5 Operation Merchandising, 1955 May
Box
5 Packaging Design in the 1870's, 1955 May
Box
5 Seagram Park Avenue, 1955 May
Box
5 A Mardi Gras Comes North to Woonsocket, 1955 May
Box
5 $25,000 A Year Out the Window! [drive-through liquor store], 1955 May
Box
5 Retailers of the Year, 1955 May
Box
5 Background to a Sales Meeting, 1955 May
Box
5 Sales Contest Leads to Bermuda, 1955 May
Box
5 The Left-Handed Screwdriver, 1955 May
Box
5 A Meeting in Montreal, 1955 August
Box
5 Border Town Competition, 1955 August
Box
5 The Stockyards Restaurant and Bar, 1955 August
Box
5 Drinks Designed to Develop Demand, 1955 August
Box
5 Twenty-Year Testimonial, 1955 August
Box
5 A Showroom on Wheels, 1955 August
Box
5 Sales Meeting for Production Staff, 1955 August
Box
5 Salesman Bob Boyd, 1955 August
Box
5 Million Case Distributors, 1955 August
Box
5 Liquor Men in the Little League, 1955 August
Box
5 Are You Looking for Good Display Ads?, 1955 August
Box
5 Hop on the Brand Wagon, 1955 August
Box
5 News from All Over Seagramerica, 1955 August
Box
5 Celebrities' Rendezvous, 1955 August
Box
5 Signs with a Sense of Humor, 1955 August
Box
5 "A Magic Touch" Spells Success at the Tunnel Inn, 1955 August
Box
5 American Legion's Annual Convention is Held in Miami, 1955 October
Box
5 A Young Man with Three Hats, 1955 October
Box
5 Designed for Salesmen, 1955 October
Box
5 Holiday in Bermuda, 1955 October
Box
5 The Birth of a Building [Ludwig Mies van der Rohe candids], 1955 October
Box
5 Sightless Tavern Keeper, 1955 October
Box
5 A Parade of Sales Aids, 1955 October
Box
5 "Drive of Champions," 1955 October
Box
5 Bar Owner with a Sense of Humor [racist], 1955 October
Box
5 How to Win Profits, 1955 October
Box
5 The Liquor Trade in New England Cleans Up After Hurricane, 1955 October
Box
5 Negro Affairs which Attract Seagram Sponsorship, 1955 October
Box
6 One More for the Road, 1957 February
Box
6 Good Ideas, 1957 February
Box
6 Seagram Building (cover), 1957 April
Box
6 MVP becomes MSR: Don Newcombe [Brooklyn Dodgers], Most Successful Retailer, 1957 April
Box
6 Display is a Fine Art: Display man Hy Snell, 1957 April
Box
6 Danny's Hideaway, 1957 April
Box
6 People, Places and Events, 1957 April
Box
6 Happy New Year [San Francisco Chinatown Parade], 1957 June
Box
6 "Vacation" Campaign is a Success [Golden Gin Displays], 1957 June
Box
6 Sure as Gold, 1957 June
Box
6 Automation - How It Affects Liquor Salesmen [IBM 650 computer], 1957 June
Box
6 Progress Report: The House of Seagram Headquarters, 1957 June
Box
6 An Ad Suddenly Comes to Life, 1957 June
Box
6 Merchandising is the Key, 1957 June
Box
6 "Sell Every Size of Seagram," 1957 June
Box
6 Seagram Family Achievement Association Holds its Annual Meeting, 1957 June
Box
6 Good Ideas from the Field, 1957 June
Box
6 Newport Rocks [Newport Jazz Festival], 1957 September
Box
6 Goodwill Barbecue, 1957 September
Box
6 The Shopping Center: A New Retailing Phenomenon, 1957 September
Box
6 New Warehouses Help Salesmen, 1957 September
Box
6 "All Abroad" for Profits, 1957 September
Box
6 What Makes a Salesman Popular?, 1957 September
Box
6 Cooking with Seagram!, 1957 September
Box
6 Who Says It's A Man's World?, 1957 September
Box
6 Spotlight on Edward Mark, Sales Manager, 1957 September
Box
6 Year's Legion Activities Capped by Car Awards, 1957 December
Box
6 People, Places and Events, 1957 December
Box
6 Al Cooper's New York, 1957 December
Box
6 Sell-tennial Report Coast to Coast, 1957 December
Box
6 East Meets West at Yamato Sukiyaki, 1957 December
Box
6 Community Leaders, 1957 December
Box
6 Seagramerica's Southernmost Territory, 1957 December
Box
6 Packaging: A Partner in Selling, 1957 December
Box
6 Seagram Participation Aids Community Promotion, 1957 December
Box
6 Thousands of Unknown Customers, 1957 December
Box
7 Delaware Liquor Store Displays, Wilmington and Dover, circa 1948
Box
7 Science Symposium, Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, 1957
Box
7 Untitled photos: Analysis of Seagram products, circa 1957
Box
7 Untitled photos: Distribution of Seagram products, circa 1958
Box
7 Untitled photos: Production of Seagram products, circa 1959
Box
7 Miscellaneous photographs: Malcolm Forbes, actor Ronald Colman, etc.
Box
7 Miscellaneous bars and restaurants
Box
7 Miscellaneous liquor store interiors and displays
Box
7 Kessler whiskey
Box
7 Liquor store window displays
Box
7 Sale and display statistics - Marketing research