The Winds and Words of War
World War I Posters and Prints from the San Antonio Public Library CollectionA rare collection of posters from the World War I era created in 1916 and 1917
Commissioned by the U.S. Committee on Public Information, more than 300 of America’s most famous illustrators, cartoonists, designers, and fine artists donated their services to create more than 700 posters in an effort to build patriotism, raise funds for war bonds, encourage enlistment, and increase volunteerism during World War I. ...
Some 450 of these posters are part of the San Antonio Public Library's permanent collection, bequeathed in 1940 by Harry Hertzberg, a Texas state senator and avid memorabilia collector. The posters were created by a group of early twentieth-century American artists, among them Charles Dana Gibson, Howard Chandler Christy, James Montgomery Flagg, Guy Lipscombe, Charles Buckle Falls, Haskell Coffin, and Norman Rockwell. The lithographs' heroic images and patriotic slogans depicted military and civilian effort and sacrifice, aiming to inspire young men and women to enlist, pick up a flag, and support the soldiers and nurses during a trying time in American history.
The posters, many of which appeared on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post, are both testaments to the people who volunteered their service and excellent examples of the period's advertising strategies and graphic design.
“These posters hung in hospitals, auditoriums, churches, and synagogues across the nation, inspiring Americans across class and religious boundaries throughout the War to End All Wars.”— San Antonio Current
“Predating television and commercial radio, these posters were a big way the government communicated what they wanted the population to know.”— Texas Public Radio