Cover of a Sears Roebuck & Co Catalog

Episode 26: Mail Order, Catalogs, & Warby Parker (Disruption, Part II)

Join Emily, Meredith, and Frank as they discuss whether companies like Warby Parker and Birchbox really qualify as disruptive innovators, the history of the catalog, how Sears Roebuck & Co outsmarted Montgomery Ward, and that time a little Welsh flannel maker used mail order and the railroads to conquer the Victorian economy.

Links & Additional Resources

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The Library Company of Philadelphia homepage

A Tribute to Printer Aldus Manutius and the Roots of the Paperback via The New York Times

University of Toronto lexicon for William Lucas’s late 1600s seed catalogue (index and summary only, subscription required)

Pioneers of Shopping by Post: The Pryce Jones Collection

Catalogue of the Pryce Jones Collection, held in the Powys County Archives in Wales

History of the Sears Catalog via The Sears Archive

The Sears Catalog: A Retail Revolution video: