Vintage Citrus Crate Label Art Print
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For sale is this vintage citrus crate label for the "Florida Cowboy" brand. Giclee art print on watercolor paper.
Here ... more For sale is this vintage citrus crate label for the "Florida Cowboy" brand. Giclee art print on watercolor paper.
Here is the fascinating history of Florida Citrus Crate Labels:
Lithography began in the late 1800s, with the first crate label most likely beginning in California. Labels were prolific as advertising, not only for citrus, but also vegetables and other fruits that were shipped in the wooden crates that were common at the time. The crate label lasted until shortly after World War II, when shortages of wood and metal brought about the invention of cardboard boxes with pre-printed brand names. These new cardboard boxes eventually took the place of the traditional wooden box for packing purposes and signaled the beginning of the end for citrus crate labels.
However, the sixty-year span during which the labels were used carries a colorful history of the early advertising and marketing of the delicious products for which they stood. In the case of Florida citrus, these sometimes whimsical labels were also a form of colorized billboards for Florida, as well as the delicious fresh citrus. All labels were registered with the Department of Agriculture and told the buyer not only the brand name, but what grade of fruit they were purchasing. The name or color background of the label stood for the grade, with blue being Grade A, red being Grade B and yellow or green denoting Grade C. For instance, the Bluebird brand meant Grade "A" whereas a Red Cardinal would have meant Grade "B."
Many of the labels had interesting anecdotes and stories on how or why they got their names and sometimes carried the history of a family in the pictures represented. For instance, the Lee family used their children's baby pictures for each child's own individual label. The Clark family always carried a flower theme throughout their entire list of labels, such as Azalea, Poinsettia, and so forth, while the Lieen family did the same thing, but with birds. Lake Wales Citrus Growers Association always carried a royalty theme in their labels since Lake Wales was known as the "Crown Jewel of the Ridge."
Much of the artwork was done by the popular artists of the time, but since it was considered commercial work, none were ever signed. The major printer of lithographic labels in Florida was the Florida Grower Press in Tampa. Other major printers were located in California, Maryland, Tennessee, Ohio, and Missouri.
Many of the old packinghouses are no longer in business today, but there still remain a few of those who have been able to weather the ups and downs of the citrus business and who still use some of the same brand names today, although not the labels.
Now you can purchase a wide array of these colorful Florida citrus labels in hi-quality giclee fine art prints, and own a unique piece of memorabilia from Florida's eccentric past. less
- 9ʺW × 5ʺD × 9ʺH
- Condition Notes
- Excellent - Minor wear consistent with age and history Excellent - Minor wear consistent with age and history less
- Early American
ARTISTS AGAINST BARE WALLS! in HOLLYWOOD, FL
My name is Carlos Plaza, I am a Photographer that used to own Native Florida ...
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