Farmers, Look to Your Own Interest by Insuring Your Tobacco in the Lancaster County Mutual Hail Insurance Company… [caption title]
C.1882 Graphically interesting illustrated broadside
Illustrated crop insurance broadside issued by the Lancaster County Mutual Hail Insurance Company of Lititz, Pennsylvania. The broadside is specifically aimed at tobacco farmers whose large, leafy crop is susceptible to hail damage.
The text of the broadside is printed in red and black and is graphically interesting. A second color—a brownish red—is introduced by overprinting in red some of the larger, black-printed type. The whole is unified by a decorated, meander border.
A large wood engraving at the top (approx. 4½ x 9½ inches) portrays an idealized prosperous farm. A farmyard scene, replete with livestock and a panoply of tools, appears in the foreground. A neat farmhouse and barn and an almost overflowing hay wagon are in the background.
The Lancaster County Mutual Hail Insurance Company was chartered in 1882, a fact mentioned in the text of the broadside—“The Only Chartered Company Doing Business in the State.” Insurance was sold in three rate classes providing insurance coverage between $50 and $125 per acre at a cost of $1.00, $1.50, or $1.75 per acre + $6.00 for every $100 of insurance:
The above Rates are so Low that Insurance is within the reach of all, so that even the poor Laborer can secure insurance…and no Farmer can affiord to farm Tobacco without an Insurance, when a few Dollars will secure him Ample Compensation for the Lablor and Expenses he may have in raising a crop of Tobacco, which may be destroyed in a few minutes, and become a Total Loss when not Insured.
Hail damaged tobacco leaves can recover from early-season hail damage, but, closer to harvest, yield will be reduced.
Company officers and directors are listed at the bottom of the broadside; all are from Lancaster County. President Peter S. Reist was himself a prominent Lancaster County Farmer and was a founder of the Lancaster County Agricultural Society.¹
Description: Farmers, Look to Your Own Interest by Insuring Your Tobacco in the Lancaster County Mutual Hail Insurance Company… [caption title]
Lancaster, Pa.: The New Era Steam Book and Job Print, No. 3 South Queen Street, c.1882. p. Broadside. 30 x 20 inches. Wood engraved illustration; decorative border. Folds; few small closed tears; some staining in margins and faint offsetting from being folded; very good.
Note. 1. The 1836 Reist House: 233 Becker Road. Leola, PA accessed online. See Biographical Annals of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania: Containing ... - Google Books accessed online [p1276].