Gems of the Archive: Unfolding a New Era

January 06th 2020 by Lucy Noble

A new year, a new decade, a new era; 2020 has dawned and we’re looking to the future, wondering what the next ten years will hold in term of scientific and technological advancements.
Poster Image

But whilst in the 2020s we’ll be expecting more intelligent computers, phones and cars, it’s funny to think that 130 years ago the new, unfolding technology of the time was to do with the modernisation of the milling industry from traditional flour milling to industrialised roller mills. 


This month’s Gem is an 1890 trade card for Washburn Crosby Company Flour Mills in Minneapolis. The card is uniquely designed like a folding children’s picture book: the picture of the traditional windmill on the front of the card cleverly folds out to reveal a modern roller milling complex inside.


Read the blog to discover how the sentiments in this advertisement were somewhat unusual back then – and how some of them would be even more unusual today!