America's Last, Best Web 1.0 Historic Campaign Button Website

If, perhaps, you're not a fan of the Romney 2012 campaign's striking t-shirt, emblazoned with a synonym for hope...shirtb615.jpg

Or a fan of the reams of conventional merchandise with two half-Rs, spooning...

spooner615.jpg

you arrive at the "Vintage" collection, Romney memorabilia that looks, well, exactly like memorabilia.romneyvintage615.jpg

Which is pleasing. But I went looking to see if the "vintage" design borrowed from any real campaigns. Did a Presidential candidate really use that kind of swooping, stenciled sans serif in the Sixties? And that's when I found America's last, best relic of Web 1.0:

ronwade615.jpg

"Ron Wade Political Campaign Buttons." 

Go and visit his site; just go look at this thing. It's all there. Oblique, bolded Arial. Text in embedded images. Rainbow GIFs. A freeservers.com web address. Even -- where the Great White Way meets Web 1.0's White Whale -- <marquee> tag.

But what's best about it? It's fueled by a single person's passion. 

Web 1.0 was a hobby shop: tacky, busy, and overflowing with passion. Ron Wade runs the best campaign button bazaar this side of HTTP. And his site, best of all, answered my question: there are no real analogues to the Romney vintage shirt. As you might be able to predict, it's an amalgam of styles, all used by Democratic politicians in the late Sixties and early Seventies:

buttons615.jpg

Ron Wade Campaign Buttons

(Republicans at the time preferred more cautious block faces. And their buttons had a decided lack of spooning R's.)

afixin615.jpg

Ron Wade Political Campaign Buttons

Presented by

Robinson Meyer is an associate editor at The Atlantic, where he covers technology.

The Best 71-Second Animation You'll Watch Today

A rock monster tries to save a village from destruction.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

The Best 71-Second Animation You'll Watch Today

A rock monster tries to save a village from destruction.

Video

The Case for Napping at Work

Most Americans don't get enough sleep. More and more employers are trying to help address that.

Video

A Four-Dimensional Tour of Boston

In this groundbreaking video, time moves at multiple speeds within a single frame.

Video

Who Made Pop Music So Repetitive? You Did.

If pop music is too homogenous, that's because listeners want it that way.

Video

Stunning GoPro Footage of a Wildfire

In the field with America’s elite Native American firefighting crew

More in Technology

Just In