- 1903 - 2003 (Creation)
Level of description
Extent and medium
11.6 Linear Feet
Name of creator
Paragon Press was founded in Montgomery, Alabama in 1903. In 1963 Paragon Press was subsumed by the Herff Jones company, which was founded in Indianapolis, Indiana in 1920. Herff Jones sells and produces yearbooks, as well as class rings, graduation caps and gowns, and other school and graduation-related products. At some point after 1963 the Carnation Company purchased Herff Jones. In 1985 forty Herff Jones employees bought the company back from the Carnation Company. In 1989 Herff Jones became primarily owned by its employees as it transitioned to an employee stock ownership program.
Immediate source of acquisition or transfer
The Herff Jones Collection was in the possession of the Herff Jones Montgomery, Alabama plant until its transfer to the Montgomery County Archives on July 29, 2020.
Content and structure area
Scope and content
This collection documents the history of the Paragon Press company of Montgomery, Alabama, as well as the history of the Herff Jones company plant in Montgomery, Alabama. Other major themes in the collection include records documenting the preparations for the seventieth-fifth anniversary open house celebration of Paragon Press in 1978. The collection also contains some correspondence and corporate records. The collection primarily divides into three parts: documents, images, and oversized images. In addition to oversized images, the image series also contains colored slides and a subseries of negatives. A very small series, ephemera, also exists.
Appraisal, destruction and scheduling
The Montgomery County Archives' mission statement notes that the MCA collects non-government records, as long as they pertain to the history of Montgomery County.
No further accruals are expected with this collection
System of arrangement
This collection is organized into four series:
Series I: Documents
• Subseries I: Publicity
• Subseries II: Historical Documentation
• Subseries III: Newspaper Clippings
• Subseries IV: Corporate Documents
• Subseries V: Correspondence
• Subseries VI: Business Records
As evidenced by the number of subseries, the “Documents” series contains a wide range of material from the historical to the routine records creation of day-to-day business.
Series II: Images
• Subseries I: Negatives
The photographs in the “Images” series document the history of Paragon Press, corporate anniversaries, and day-to-day work in the Paragon Press/Herff Jones Montgomery, Alabama plant.
Series III: Oversized Images
The “Oversized Images” series contains colored drawings of the Herff Jones Plant located at 2800 Selma Highway, as well as photographs depicting daily work at the Paragon Press/Herff Jones plant in Montgomery.
Series IV: Ephemera
The “Ephemera” series contains two bound volumes, one containing board minutes and correspondence, and the other consisting of Paragon Press stock certificates.
Conditions of access and use area
Conditions governing access
Collection is open for research.
Conditions governing reproduction
It is presumed corporate and individual copyrights have been retained by copyright owners. Copyright restrictions apply. Users of materials should seek necessary permissions from the copyright holders to comply with U.S. copyright laws.
Language of material
Script of material
Language and script notes
Physical characteristics and technical requirements
The Collection consists of paper-based photographs, film slides, film negatives, framed oversized images, documents and two bound volumes.
A physical finding can be found on hand at the Montgomery County Archives.