Birdseye View Calendar Showing the Schmidt Printing Works Against the San Francisco Sky Line
Rare calendar for 1908, published by the Schmidt Label & Litho. Co, and bearing the name of its sales agent in Portland, E. Shelley Morgan.
In the late 19th and early 20th Century, Schmidt Label & Litho rose to become one of the largest printer's of chromolithography on the west coast. The present calendar is both a beautiful object and a fascinating graphic advertisement of the company's spread, here promoting the contact information for its local agent in Portland.
The Schmidt Lithography Company was based in San Francisco. Max Schmidt, a German immigrant, founded his first printing business in 1873, and he was one of the first printers to use lithography on the West Coast. His plant burned twice, in 1884 and 1886, but by the 1890s he ran a factory in San Francisco, as well as branches in Portland and Seattle.
During the 1906 earthquake and fire the company’s premises were destroyed again. Schmidt quickly acquired a nearby paper factory and production continued practically uninterrupted. Within two years of the fire, Schmidt had rebuilt on the site of his former factory at the corner of Second and Bryant Streets.
Schmidt’s company was best known for its printed labels, but they also produced other items like separately-issued prints. The company was once the largest printing company on the West Coast and today they are remembered for the clock tower that still stands at Second and Bryant Streets.