The Daily Item Carnival Edition. Feb. 18th New Orleans. P.P.P. 1896. 9th Representation Phunny Phorty Phellows, Popular Phads and Phancies. Mardi Gras 1896.

The Daily Item Carnival Edition. Feb. 18th New Orleans. P.P.P. 1896. 9th Representation Phunny Phorty Phellows, Popular Phads and Phancies. Mardi Gras 1896.

New Orleans: The Daily Item, 1896. Koeckert and Walle, Lithographers. Chromolithograph, 72 x 107 cm, mounted on new linen.

A lovely Mardi Gras poster for the Phunny Phorty Phellows and its numerous extravagant and intricate floats, whose theme for 1896 was “Popular Phads and Phancies.”

The Phunny Phorty Phellows krewe first came onto the Mardi Gras scene in 1878. Known for their satirical costumes reflecting contemporary issues, the Phellow’s motto is “a little nonsense now and then is relished by the best of men.” The Queen and “Boss” (the Phellow’s equivalent of a King) are designated during the procession, and the official band is known as The Storyville Stompers. This poster features a parade of twenty farcical floats with titles such as “Phad of Creation,” “Money vs. Title,” and “Aquatic Pastimes.” A float entitled “National Beverage” shows numerous people toasting glasses of beer and dancing around a fountain that is spewing brew. Upon the fountain there sits a man atop a barrel being driven by two horned animals. “After the Ball” portrays what appears to be a drunken New Orleans baseball team with their equipment scattered about. A view of the city appears at the center depicting a wharf with bales of cotton piled up in the foreground and a steamboat on the Mississippi.

Gustav Koeckert founded the New Orleans Lithographing Company in 1883 with partners Peter Davis and George Kerth. The company was dissolved in 1885, Koeckert founding in turn the Southern Lithographic Company, Koeckert & Co., and in 1889, when he partnered with John Walle, Koeckert & Walle. Following Koeckert’s death in 1897, the firm became Walle & Co. These firms specialized in Mardi Gras lithography, as well as labels and stock certificates. Much of this work was done by Frederick Susus von Ehren, a talented artist and longtime Koeckert associate active in the industry for many years.

REFERENCES: Last, Jay. The Color Explosion : Nineteenth-Century American Lithography (Santa Ana, CA, 2005), p. 216.

CONDITION: Old folds, with a few pinpoint separations at intersections and some marginal tears and chips.

Item #3368

Price: $900.00