Advertisements for farm equipment
Art of the Draw: Advertising posters from the McCormick-International Harvester Collection
Patented in 1834 by Virginian Cyrus H. McCormick, the reaper made frontier agriculture both possible and profitable by allowing farmers to harvest five to six acres of grain a day. McCormick sensed that better opportunities for his products lay in the West, so in 1847, he moved to Chicago and opened a factory. Marketing his reaper to farmers in Illinois and Wisconsin (and eventually the rest of the nation), McCormick aggressively promoted his equipment through advertisements that ran in newspapers and journals. This online exhibit features fifty posters from McCormick-International Harvester, the largest and most influential farm equipment manufacturer in the 20th century.