The History of the Catalog

Main

The Homestead Act is issued

1862

First mail-order catalog is established by Montgomery Ward

1872

First catalog is issued – “The Wish Book”

1872

New policy enacted by Ward -- “Satisfaction guaranteed or your money back”

1875

Wanamaker proposed that products be shipped directly to rural consumers

1891

Sears stepped-up advertising

1893 - 1894

First general catalog mailed by Sears and Roebuck

1896

Rural Free Delivery is begun

1896

First color section appears in the Sears catalog

1897

Rural Free Delivery became a permanent service

1902

New policy enacted by Sears -- “Your money back if you are not satisfied”

1903

Food can be sold by catalog due to the invention of refrigerated railroad cars

1925

Sears stopped production of catalogs

1993

Ward stopped production of catalogs

2001