September 5, 2007

Insurance ephemera at the Museum of Insurance

work comp stamp
Many of us are familiar with the Insurance Library, a Boston area institution that has been an important insurance resource for consumers and professionals alike for more than a century. But did you know there was such a thing as the online Museum of Insurance? We certainly didn't, but we chanced upon it in one of our recent Google searches. It's one of those strange little nooks that you find on the Internet, a repository of insurance ephemera ranging from calendars and postcards to policies, stock certificates, and receipts. The earliest of these documents dates back to the early 1800s. We were disappointed that there were no workers' compensation documents among the mix. Of course, in days of yore, it would have been "workmans' compensation," a term you still hear bandied about now and then. We did our own search on workers compensation and found a commemorative workmens' compensation stamp that was issued in 1961, one stamp in a folio of four. Here's a picture of President Kennedy and Vice President Johnson walking to the introduction ceremony for the stamp.

Perhaps some large insurers have some workers' comp ephemera that they would like to donate to the cause.

Interesting as we find some of these documents, we're just as happy that this is a virtual museum. Frankly, it sounds like something that would be a side stop in the Griswold family's vacation itinerary. But as long as we're reflecting on the history of the insurance industry, at the Early Office Museum you can compare your work environment with those of some of your professional forbearers.

Insurance ephemera is a pretty thin category on E-Bay. If you are looking for the perfect gift for National Boss Day come this Oct 16, or just for your favorite insurance geek, you may find something interesting under insurance and banking advertising collectibles.

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1 Comment

This is a wonderful site indeed. I started collecting insurance ephemera a few years ago and has been in contact with many collectors and similar museums worldwide. I also found that online auction, like eBay, sell these wonderful policies too. The earliest in my collection is 1691 London fire policy. It is amazing that it survived for so long, probably longer than the buildng itself it was issued to.


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This page contains a single entry by Julie Ferguson published on September 5, 2007 1:14 PM.

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