Collection Development and Strategies Department

Stack of magazine ads

Featured Database: J. Walter Thompson: Advertising America

You can use databases to easily find organized collections of articles, journals, news, streaming videos, primary sources, data, and more!

Here’s one of our unique databases:

J. Walter Thompson: Advertising America

What’s in it?

This database contains materials from the J. Walter Thompson Company, which was an advertising firm. Its holdings document the changes in U.S. consumer culture during the twentieth century. It contains published and unpublished internal communications, other corporate files, brand case studies, and, most excitingly, over 1,600 digitized advertisements!

Why should you use it?

It demonstrates a successful advertising firm in action. It follows the J. Walter Thompson Company through the process of creating and publishing some of the most well-known advertising campaigns of the twentieth century. It also provides a visual commentary of American life through the 1000+ advertisements in its collection.

Who should use it?

This is a great resource for researchers, students, faculty, and staff who are interested in U.S. history, consumer culture, advertising, and marketing.

Why use a database?

When you use a specific database, rather than a search engine or discovery tool, you often can find more relevant sources. For example, subject databases include sources about that subject only, rather than a general search engine or discovery tool that includes information about everything. This way you don’t have to wade through thousands of irrelevant results!

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If you have questions about this database or others, please see our Ask Us page.