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Map, United States, Pictorial, Football Map, Albert Richard, Vintage Print, 1940


F.E. Cheeseman (after)
Albert Richard Football Map
Albert Richard Co., Milwaukee, Wisconsin: 1940
Color process print
17 x 23.75 inches, image
19 x 26 inches, overall

This is the 1940 edition of a series of six American football maps that were published as promotional items by Albert Richard Co., a Wisconsin menswear manufacturer. The colorful 1940 United States map, executed in the Art Deco taste, focuses primarily on collegiate football, but also includes a list of the ten professional teams of that era within a small inset map. The locations of dozens of college teams are marked by triangular penants, football shapes, megaphones, or marching band drums emblazoned with the name of a school. Beside each of these names is a number corresponding to a “Key to Locations and Nicknames” in a box across the bottom. The map is further embellished with small figures of players. Major conference regions (Big 10, Big Six, etc.) are color coded on the small inset map and outlined in those colors on the main map. The yellow border is printed with names and numbers of All-America Football players from each school for the past 50 years. The spaces between the outline of the United States and the border of the print are colored deep blue, against which appear various school seals, small scrolls listing bowl game scores, and an illustration of fans watching a game in a stadium that spans the bottom. Two players and a cheerleader are illustrated in the upper center on either side of the map title. Conference winners from the preceding season appear on a compass rose in the lower left corner.

Product description continues below.


As is customary for Albert Richard football maps, the backside of the 1940 map has several illustrations of Albert Richard’s seasonal jackets and coats and related sales information. In the center is a list — “1940 Schedules — Major Conference Schools.” This particular example of the 1940 map has the name The Great Wardrobe Sport Clothes, Santa Barbara, California, imprinted on the back — apparently the retail store gave it away as a promotion.

Albert Richard Co. published all-America football map posters for the five years 1938, 1939, 1940, 1941, and 1946, each with a different design by F.E. Cheeseman, that incorporated pertinent information. An additional edition (the sixth map in the series) was published in 1950, drawn by G.E. Smith. Each of the Cheeseman maps is illustrated with stylized Art Deco pictures in bold bright colors, packing a great deal of information into the design. Albert Richard — a division of Fried Ostermann Company in Milwaukee — manufactured men’s and boys’ outerwear and issued these maps as promotions; the backside of each map is fully illustrated with examples of the line of Albert Richard’s seasonal jackets and coats for that year and information about them. The map posters were apparently given away either by Albert Richard or by some of the regional retail clothing stores that sold its menswear. Indeed, Albert Richard placed ads in publications such as Boys’ Life magazine with a coupon to mail in for a free copy of the map poster: “You’ll want to hang it in your room for all your friends to admire.” During World War II, Albert Richard issued two other promotional maps by Cheeseman: Patriotic Panorama of the United States (1942) and Aviation Cavalcade (1944).

Stephen Hornsby illustrates the 1938 Albert Richard football map — the first in the series — with a double-page spread in his 2017 history of American pictorial maps, classifying it as among those that “demonstrated the importance of pictorial mapping for education and instruction.” An example of the 1941 Albert Richards football map belonging to the Library of Congress is described in Eyes of the Nation, a book about the Library collection:

This pictorial map demonstrates how popular football had become by the beginning of World War II. With a primary emphasis on the collegiate side of the sport, with team nicknames, 1940 season records, and major conference championships, it also documents the major professional clubs — only ten at the time. The map carries the endorsement of the noted sports writer Grantland Rice, and reports his selections for the 1940 All-America team.

Condition: Generally very good with the usual overall light toning, handling, wear, soft creases.


“Football Map Advertisement.” Boys’ Life. October 1938. p. 24. Online at Google Books. (14 August 2020).

Hornsby, Stephen J. Picturing America: The Golden Age of Pictorial Maps. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2017. pp. 79, 114-15.

Virga, Vincent, Alan Brinkley, and Curators of the Library of Congress. Eyes of the Nation A Visual History of the United States. New York: Knopf, 1997, pp. 300-301.

Additional information


20th Century