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NOVEMBER2004
HOME 'Voices of War' Author! Author! 'The Great War' . . . In Rotogravure An 'Irreplaceable Dance Treasure' It's More Than A Library Sweet Home . . . Ohio 'Tis the Season . . . For Shopping
'The Great War' . . . In Rotogravure

Gravure printing originated in the early 19th century. The process did not become widespread until the early 20th century, however, when newspapers embraced this new technology. Characterized by halftone (black and white) reproductions printed at high speed on a variety of paper stock, gravure printing allowed the newspaper industry to reproduce photographs and artwork on a mass scale on inexpensive newsprint paper.

'Washington's Coffee.' Advertisement, New York Tribune, June 22, 1919 A French officer and his British ally at the front read The New York Times, May 23, 1915

A new presentation in the American Memory Web site, "Newspaper Pictorials: World War I Rotogravures," features leading newspapers that took advantage of this new printing process during the Great War (1914-1918). Rotogravure printing, which produced richly detailed, high-quality illustrations -- even on inexpensive newsprint paper -- was used to create vivid new pictorial sections. Publishers that could afford to invest in the new technology saw sharp increases both in readership and advertising revenue.

What, exactly, is rotogravure? The rotogravure process, still widely used today, is explained here.

The images in this collection track American sentiment about the war in Europe, week by week, before and after the United States became involved. Events of the war are detailed alongside society news and advertisements touting products of the day, creating a pictorial record of both the war effort and life at home. The presentation also allows you to browse the materials by date and publication title.

Other places in American Memory offer World War I-related materials as well. To find them, go to the home page and type "World War I" in the search box on the upper right of the page. If you use quotation marks around your search words, you can limit the number of "hits" to only World War I items.

 

A. "Washington's Coffee." Advertisement, New York Tribune, June 22, 1919. Serial and Government Publications Division. Reproduction information: Digital ID: sgpnytr 19190622; http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.gdc/sgpnytr.19190622

B. A French officer and his British ally at the front read The New York Times, May 23, 1915. Serial and Government Publications Division. Reproduction information: Digital ID: sgpnyt 19150523; http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.gdc/sgpnyt.19150523


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