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Image of trade card

Wearmouth Bridge

This small mid- Victorian trade card for A. Monkhouse, Grocer and Tea Dealer, High Street, Bishopwearmouth highlights Wearmouth Bridge, Sunderland’s cast-iron bridge first opened in 1796, when it was the biggest single span of its type at about 250 feet with a high arch to allow sailing ships to pass underneath.

The trade card carries a wealth of information on trades and locations and can be a productive subject for the social historian. For the collector they offer an authenticity and a history, offering a glimpse into the working lives of shopkeepers and craftsmen of past generations highlighting trades that barely exist anymore.

As a source for inspiration the designer and typographer will discover rich and remarkable material. While for the student of printing history an opportunity to learn the influence trade cards had on the printing trade and the development of advertising.



This regular feature shows special items from members’ own collections. Submissions by email should include a scan of the item.