Al Malpa Ephemera


1890s Ticket "Florida on Wheels"

1890s Ticket "Florida on Wheels"


Complimetary [sic] Florida on Wheels., Admit one. Wanton S. Webb.”

According to this ticket, Webb was the Florida Commissioner to the Paris Exposition and the former-director of the Florida Sub-Tropical Exposition. This indicates that the card must have been printed after 1890.

“'Florida’s Rolling Expedition' is a State Fair on wheels, a tenth wonder of the world. It is the most remarkable car on either continent, has been entered by more people on the inside, gazed at by more people on the outside than any car ever built in the history of railroading, and has done Florida more good than all the fairs she has ever held.” – Charlotte (N.C.) Daily Observer

From “The Fruits of Empire: Contextualizing Food in Post-Civil War American Art and Culture”: "An 1887 trade card advertising an exhibition of Florida fruits demonstrates the deep connection between fruit and rail. Printed by the Jackson and Sharp Railroad Company based in Wilmington, Delaware, this trade card publicized the exhibit ―Florida on Wheels—a rolling palace from the Land of Flowers laden with rare exhibits illustrating to tourists, invalids, and prospective settlers the attractions, advantages, and resources of that sunny land. Visitors to this conservatory on wheels could view oranges, pineapples, lemons, mangoes, shaddocks, and bananas that were all transported from the mighty deep. The exhibit‘s main attraction was likely the orange since this fruit was embossed on the front of the trade card. Florida on Wheels was a veritable fruit museum and portable garden that the Sharp Railroad Company used to draw Northern visitors to the South.”

From the Delaware Public Archives: “The reorganized Jackson & Sharp Company, also known as the Delaware Car Works, was said to be the largest of its kind in the Americas… The car workers, described in one magazine article as a ‘community of artists,’ hailed from a number of crafts and trades. Painters, decorators, upholsterers, and a host of other workers and craftsmen joined designers, carpenters, and smiths in constructing a car…The plant also manufactured exposition cars—moving billboards for trade shows or state tourism, and cars for transporting theatrical companies.” (Photo on right from Florida

Condition: Very good. The edges are slightly rubbed. The back of the card has two scratches. Size 4.5 x 2.0 inches.

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