Advertising Art From the 1800'sFull-color printing in the 1800's. Lithography was literally printing with stone plates. The quality of some of the printing from that era is nothing short of amazing… that these meticulous craftsmen were able to achieve bright, detailed colors and softly gradated flesh tones. Most modern full color printing is done with four colors: Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black. 19th Century lithographers worked with their own pallets, often consisting of 7 or 8 different colors and stone plates. Look carefully at these selections. Did you know this quality of color printing was being done in the decades after the Civil War? It is also fun to see the humor and personality in these ads.
Enjoy the slide show below showing segments from old ads: