Publisher: Curt Teich & Co.

Identifier: Curt Teich & Co.
Biography: "Curt Teich Co. 1898-1978 Chicago, IL Curt Teich was already working as a lithographer in Lobenstein, Germany when he emigrated to Chicago in 1895. He would start his own firm in 1898 concentrating on newspaper and magazine printing. While he was an early publisher of postcards, he did not begin printing them in number himself until 1908. As his competition dwindled his sales expanded, and his American factories would eventually turn out more postcards than any other in the United States. They they are best known for their wide range of advertising and view-cards of North America. By the 1920ïs they were producing so many postcards with borders that they became recognized as a type dubbed White Border Cards. Curt Teich was an early pioneer of the offset printing process having started using offset presses in 1907. It would take a number of years before he had presses made to his satisfaction, and many more years for him to perfect the method. His inovations in this printing technique directly led to the production of what we now call Linens by the early 1930’s. While they produced many cards during World War Two, they also aided the war effort by printing many military maps. Although Curt Teich eventually turned management of the firm over to his son, he remained active in company operations throughout its history. After his death in 1974 the family business was sold to Regensteiner Publishers who continued to print cards at the Chicago plant until 1978. Afterwards the rights to the company name and processes were sold to the Irish firm John Hinde Ltd. Their California subsidiary now prints cards under the name John Hinde Curteich, Inc. 1900-1908 Cards numbered 1 to 14989. While the Curt Teich Company is largely known for manufacturing postcards in the United States, a number of their earliest cards in the form of tinted collotypes were contracted out through German printers. They have no letter prefixes or fancy names, just the Curt Teich Company name and logo. 1908-1928 Cards numbered A or R 1 to 124180. These tinted halftone cards represent Teich’s first serious effort to enter the postcard publishing business. Those with an R prefix were generally printed as bleeds issued under the C.T. Photochrome name. Those of the same period with an A prefix were issued with with white borders under the C.T. American Art name. It is important to note that the numbering system in combination with prefixes is what designates the year issued and the printing method. The trade names on their cards do not nessesarily carry any specificity. While most C.T. American Art cards were produced as tinted halftones within the A series; they were also produced in offset lithography in the OC series and latter as linens in the H series. 1912-1925 Cards numbered 1 to 14804 with a two letter prefix. While the production of C.T. American Art cards dominated these years, they also published a wide variety of card types in various printing methods and styles alongside their more common cards. Some known series are AD, AP, AQ, AS, AX, DT, OR, RA, RD, RH, RP, RS, and WP. AQ These tinted halftone cards issued under the name C.T. Aquarelle were made to imitated the look of hand coloring. DT Curt Teich Duotone. Printed as a black halftone over a solid fawn tint. RD Curt Teich Doubletone. Printed as a black halftone over two tints, one neutral and one warm. RA C.T. Artchrom. Initially issued as tinted halftones for the Panama Pacific International Exposition, this same name continued to be used on other cards including those printed as linens. RH Curt Teich Handcolored. Printed as a black halftone, often with the extensive use of shading mediums, and then hand colored. 1905-1926 with C prefix Curt Teich also produced uncommon sets of cards with single letter prefixes, often followed by the letter C. Some of these cards were issued under their own trade names. Information on theses sets are scant as they were never properly recorded in the company’s books. Curt Teich Sky-tint. Printed in a black halftone with a blue lithographic overprint in the sky. Most seem to have been published in the early 1920’s. D Curt Teich Photo-Varicolor The color on these cards were produced through shading mediums and overprinted with a black halftone. 1929-1930 Tinted halftone cards printed in this interim period had the last two digits of the year printed after the card number, 1-29 to 6262-29 and 1-30 to 2934-30. 1929-1978 Cards numbered D1 to D20363. These were largely monochromatic cards ranging from pale grey to bluish green issued with and without borders under the C.T. Photo-Platin name. While some were produced through straight halftone printing, others were produced with shading mediums, which gives them a stylish but stiff appearance. This technique was also used on souvenirs and other promotional materials they printed, which are included within this series numbers. After 1930 card numbers began with a number corresponding to the last digit of the year it was published in followed by a letter series denoting the decade. A series cards were printed in the 1930’s, B in the 1940’s, and C in the 1950’s. They were almost all issued with an H prefix designating a linen card under the CT Colortone name. While most of these cards have borders, some were also issued as bleeds. A smaller subset of linen cards within the H series was issued under the CT Colorit name. Many of these are advertising cards. The same numbering system continued with the last digit of the year followed by D indicating cards printed in the 1960’s and E for cards printed until 1978. These were issued with a K prefix designating them as modern chrome cards issued under the Curteichcolor name. Some of these cards date back into the 1950’s. The quality of these cards runs the gamut since it took some time to perfect the technique. After Regensteiner took over the firm in 1974 all cards were printed as continental sized chromes issued with the prefix ED. Curt Teich printed postcards for many other publishers both large and small. Sometimes the name of both firms will appear on the card, and sometimes only the contract publisher. Even in these latter cases Teich’s unique numbering system often remains, which clues us in that he was the printer. Other prefixes were also used to designate special cards or those printed for especially large contracts. Series B, E, K Miniature postcards. Series H Contract cards for Fred Harvey. Series L Contract cards for Hugh C. Leighton. Series N Used to designate a reprinted image. Series W Contract cards for the F.W. Woolworth Company. Around 1910 to 1914 a series of national view-cards in tinted halftone were printed under the Sexichrome and Octochrome labels that are different from those issued by the American News Co. The name seems to imply they were printed in six and eight different colors but they all appear to be poorly printed in a more limited pallet with little optical blending. While a large number of different local publishers names can be found on the back of these cards, the name of Curt Teich has also been found. This would seem to imply that Curt Teich was the probable printer of all these cards." -http://www.metropostcard.com/publisherst.html, accessed March 2015