J.H. Vail & Co., New York 1897
Medical Publishers, Booksellers & Importers


Normally, I buy these billheads and other ephemera in hand-picked, single lots. But this one showed up unexpectedly in a lot of 30 or 40 assorted billheads from late 19th-century New York. It had not been advertised, featured, or otherwise mentioned as being a part of the lot. Probably only has value to a bookish wonk like me.

Actually, this company called itself "publishers, booksellers and importers." Not sure what they imported, but probably related to the other two aspects of their business.

The thing I like best about this billhead is the company logo--a skull resting on a book. I guess the full cadaver holding up Gray's Anatomy would have been a bit over the top. The skull/book connotation to medical publishing and bookselling is more subtle and effective, I think.





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