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Automatic Merchandising Company album
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Automatic Merchandising Company album

Accession 2017.202

Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department, Hagley Museum and Library


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

Finding aid prepared by Laurie Sather, 2017.,

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2018-02-12T08:24-0500

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, Automatic Merchandising Company album (Accession 2017.202), Hagley Museum and Library, Wilmington, DE 19807

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Descriptive Summary

Title: Automatic Merchandising Company album
Dates: circa 1955
Accession Number: 2017.202
Creator: Automatic Merchandising Company.
Extent: 1 volume
Physical Description: 22 photographic prints : b&w ; 8 x 10 in. 2 magazine article reprints. Removed from album for preservation purposes.
Language of Material: English
Repository: Hagley Museum and Library: Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department
Abstract: Automatic Merchandising Company operated and installed vending machines. A signature product was the Auto-Snak, a set of food vending machines which dispensed soda, coffee, milk, sandwiches, soup, salads, pastries and ice cream. This album is a promotional salesman sample album of automatic food vending machines for factories, universities, and offices. The album promotes the company's Auto-Snak machines.
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Historical Note

Automatic Merchandising Company operated and installed vending machines. A signature product was the Auto-Snak, a set of food vending machines which dispensed soda, coffee, milk, sandwiches, soup, salads, pastries and ice cream. These automat style vending machines emerged in America after the invention of the first coffee vendors in 1946 that allowed for the use of vending machines for coffee breaks, cutting needed catering staffs in large factories. By 1950 the first refrigerated sandwiches were being sold. During the 1950s companies like Automatic Merchandising expanded their operations to include support kitchens, and staff to allow factories to continually maintain vending stations in several locations in factories for their workers.

Automatic Merchandising Company was headquartered in Chicago, Illinois and had a branch in Detroit, Michigan. Executive William S. Fishman (1916-1991) ran the company from 1941 to 1959 when the firm was merged with Davidson Brothers to become Automatic Retailers of America Inc. In 1994, the company changed its name to Aramark Corporation, which today is one of the largest food service, facilities, and uniform service providers.

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Scope and Content

This album is a promotional salesman sample album of automatic food vending machines for factories, universities, and offices. The album promotes the company's Auto-Snak machines which sold milk, fresh salads, sandwiches, hot coffee, pastries, ice cream, hot soup, and soda. Budd Manufacturing Plant, Marquette University, Columbia University, and the Goodrich School all used Auto-Snak machines. The images show close-up views of products such as Pepsi-Cola, Dad's Root Beer, Campbell Soup and others. There is also an article about the Budd plant installing the machines and a report about solving issues related to feeding employees. The promotional album is from the Detroit Branch. The contents have been removed from the album for preservation, however, the original order of the album has been maintained.

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Access Points

Food service
Vending machines.
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Series Descriptions and Inventory

Volume Page
1 1-3 "Automatic Catering at Budd" article by G.R. Schreiber, circa 1955; 1 magazine reprint : 3 pages.
Volume Page
1 4 Automatic coffee vending machine, circa 1955; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 5 Auto-Snak machine at Budd Wheel Plant, circa 1955 [Hamtramck, Michigan.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 6-9 Auto-Snak machine at unidentified locations, circa 1955 [Includes workers using the machines.] ; 4 photographic prints : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 10 Active kitchen, circa 1955 [Unidentified location.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 11 Auto-Snak machine at Marquette University, circa 1955 [Milwaukee.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 12 Active kitchen, circa 1955 [Unidentified location.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 13 Cambell's Tomato Soup vending machine, circa 1955; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 14 Soda vending machine, circa 1955 [Dispenses: Pepsi-Cola, Ginger-Ale, Dad's Old Fashioned Root Beer, and Cherry.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 15 Rosebud Milk/chocolate milk vending machine, circa 1955 [Jersey Creamery Co.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 16 Sandwich vending machine, circa 1955; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 17 Potato salad and fruit cocktail in cherry jello, circa 1955; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 18 Ice cream vending machine, circa 1955 [Good Humor.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 19 Pastries vending machine, circa 1955; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 20 Auto-Snak machine at Columbia University, circa 1955; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 21 Auto-Snak machine at Goodrich School, circa 1955 [Uniondale, Long Island.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 22 People using Auto-Snak machine, circa 1955 [Unidentified location.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 23 Back of machine, circa 1955; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 24 Alley, circa 1955 [Unidentified location.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 25 Auto-Snak machine at the Budd Wheel Plant, circa 1955 [Hamtramck, Michigan.] ; 1 photographic print : b&w ; 8 x 10 in.
Volume Page
1 27-30 "A Report to Management: Solving the Problem of In-Office Feeding," 1954 June [From Management Methods.] ; 1 magazine reprint : 4 pages.