1868 Sand Paper Handbill Matthewman Lewis, New Haven CT

 Sand Paper Advertising Handbill
Matthewman & Lewis
New Haven, Oct. 15, 1868

An interesting advertising handbill for Sand Paper, sold by Matthewman & Lewis, hardware merchants of New Haven, Connecticut. Dated October 15, 1868. A handbill was a common 18th and 19th century form of advertising, a single, small printed page intended to be distributed by hand, unlike a broadside which was a large printed page for posting or pasting on a wall. The ultimate form of ephemera, handbills rarely survived the passage of time.

Matthewman & Lewis Sandpaper Handbill

What's so special about this handbill for Sand, or Flint Paper? Woodworkers today seem to think of sandpaper as a modern convenience. This handbill shows that in the mid 19th century, Flint Paper was a commodity of enough importance to warrant the printing of a letterpress handbill.

Who was Matthewman & Lewis? Hardware dealers of enough success to warrant a full page advertisement in the 1869 Waterbury, Ct. directory and to have had a stereoview taken of their establishment.

Matthewman & Lewis Hardware Merchants Stereoview
Matthewman & Lewis New Haven Directory Advertisement
So next time you reach for sandpaper, you are reaching for a traditional woodworking product.