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The Ephemera Society News

The Spring issue of the society’s journal “The Ephemerist” is scheduled to be despatched to members in April.

Cover of The Ephemerist

In this issue

Both the articles on Eastern Bloc matchboxes from the 1950s–80s and fez labels of the early 1900s featured in this Spring issue of The Ephemerist 184 are examples of factories that are seeking to differentiate their products by offering something extra — namely an attractive package that features some of the best illustrators of the day.

Why not become a member today? A year’s membership of The Ephemera Society entitles you to four issues. Join us!

The Ephemera Society is always pleased to welcome new members. Payment can now be made online via PayPal.


Victorian Songster


9-10 July 2019

The Centre for Printing History and Culture in conjunction with Print Networks and Liverpool John Moores University is organising a conference entitled Dregs, dross and debris: the art of transient print.

An opportunity to take a fresh look at the printed material too often regarded as trash - either by its contemporaries, who regarded it as disposable, or by the academy which until recently has tended to treat such items as beneath contempt.

More infortmation visit the Centre for Printing History and Culture website.


Poster Stamp Collectors Club

Poster Stamp Collectors Club

PSCC was formed in 2005 to increase awareness of an important area of ephemera often overlooked.

These beautiful stamps, used for product promotion, exhibitions, political and social causes and so forth, are a window into their times, social and historical. While many collectors seek only poster stamps, they are a wonderful addition to any thematic or topical collection.

For membership details visit the PSCC website



Tickets to the Healing Arts: Medical Lecture Tickets of the 18th and 19th Centuries

Online Exhibition

For more than the first century of formal medical education in America, medical schools were proprietary in nature. The faculty, a collection of independent entrepreneurs, collected fees directly from medical students and in return, issued them tickets for admission to their course of lectures.

Dalhousie College and University, medical lecture ticket, 1902-03

Medical lecture tickets dating as far back as the 1760s survive as physical evidence of this proprietary system of medical education. The tickets were meant to be ephemeral, a paper that admitted a medical student to a course on the road to becoming a physician, but unlike a diploma, nothing intended for longevity.

Fortunately, a significant number of students kept their tickets as mementos and over time, a lesser but still significant number of those keepsakes survive in private and institutional collections, much to the delight of archivists, scholars, medical historians, interested physicians and others with curiosity.

As with all artifacts, medical lecture tickets essentially tell stories about people. Professors who issued the tickets and medical students who purchased them were individuals of diverse medical, historical, military, cultural and human interest and accomplishment. This catalogue unfolds nearly 200 of their stories from 100 tickets selected from the vast ticket collection of the University of Pennsylvania Archives and Records Center.

Image: Dalhousie College and University, medical lecture ticket, 1902-03
Copyright © Dalhousie University