Take the edge off winter’s penetrating chill at Historic Libations, the California Historical Society’s annual holiday party. Now in its eighth year, this special edition of Historic Libations coincides with the opening of our newest exhibition Vintage: Wine, Beer, and Spirits Labels from the Kemble Collections on Western Printing and Publishing. These exquisite Great Depression—era labels are the perfect backdrop to our signature menu of craft cocktails, legendary California wine, and innovative brews. Live entertainment for your dancing pleasure.
Vintage: Wine, Beer, and Spirits Labels from the Kemble Collections on Western Printing and Publishing is an exhibition that explores CHS's exquisite collection of vintage wine, beer, and spirits labels produced by the now-forgotten Lehmann Printing and Lithographing Company of San Francisco. Designed during the terrible privation and unrest of the Great Depression, Lehmann's labels graced hundreds of thousands of bottles of mass-manufactured, highly alcoholic wines and liquors, invoking deliciously unrealistic fantasies of peace, plenty, and the high-class life. Marrying design with consumer ideology, the Lehmann oeuvre represents a forgotten high point of American commercial art. The exhibition features hundreds of colorfully illustrated labels, ephemera, and stock label catalogue books from Lehmann Printing. Learn more about the exhibition.
This exhibition coincides with the publication of two new books, Vintage: California Wine Labels of the 1930s and Well Aged: California Whiskey and Spirits Labels of the 1930s, illuminate a near-forgotten artisanal legacy tucked among the archives of the California Historical Society’s Kemble Collections on Western Printing and Publishing.
You may bring your paper ticket to the event or check in with the registration desk when you arrive. If you purchased the ticket option which includes copies of Vintage: California Wine Labels of the 1930s and Well Aged: California Whiskey and Spirits Labels of the 1930s, please check in with the front desk to receive your copies. We will hold books for up to 30 days past the event.