52 E 19th St. NYC October 2003

Organising American Lithographic probably began before Joseph Fairchild was conceived in the merry month of May of 1891......by the fall that year rumours were floating around Wall Street. And where there is smoke there is fire. On Saturday Feb 6th 1892 most of the major newspapers reported on it being a done deal. 3 day old Joseph Fairchild Knapp was rocking in his cradle at 322 West 72nd St., just off the Hudson River and I doubt he was impressed, yet this new Company would play a very large part in his future destiny.

A large part (there were no small parts actually) of the litho buisness was labels. About 80% of all labels were printed under the ALCO umbrella. Cigar Labels have seemed to survive very well and are collected today at some prices that would amaze you.

Here are a few of them printed by the charter companies that would make up the new American Lithographic Co. Joseph P. Knapp president.

Heppenheimer Litho ahh Beer Cigars and Balls ...watch that ash sir!....

George Harris Litho ......Who is the Devil With The Blue Dress On?

Louis Ettlinger became the Treasurer and later would move to Crowell Collier. His daughter Josephine would wind up as a one of the first directors of the Knapp Foundation. I believe J. F. took her place when she died in 1932.

SOME LABELS PRINTED UNDER THE AMERICAN LITHOGRAPHIC BANNER

American Litho Co.

BUT NOT EVERYONE WAS THAT HAPPY

ABOUT THE FORMATION OF ALCO



O.L. Schwencke & Co. 1884-1900 - NY

In 1892, O. L. Schwencke wrote to the cigar-makers concerning the formation of the American Lithographic Co. He would have nothing to do with this new "label trust." From this point on, however, he would offer no further discounts. He would, instead, offer clients his best price first. label, and whether the labels were at his old or new lower price. About 1900 Schwencke sold out to Moehle Lithographic Co of NY (1900-1930)

"Evolution of Cigar-Label Art Lithographers" by Mark Trout

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