Smyrnaphon (U.S.A. ethnic) / c. 1948

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Design: The label name and logo features letterpress type (Tempo) and ornaments that were cast on the Ludlow typecasting machine, equipment that was widely used in American newspaper composing rooms c. 1920 to c. 1970. The label was likely manufactured in the U.S. for the descendants of (mostly Christian) Armenians who managed to escape the genocide carried out by the Turkish government during and after WWI. The label name relates to Smyrna, a city in Turkey. It is unlikely that the label originated in Turkey because of the appearance of the cross at the base of the ornament; the Muslim Turks would not have allowed that symbol to be marketed to the public.

History: Oudi Hrant was a singer of Armenian folk music, Anush Yarin being the song title, which also appears (presumably) in the Armenian alphabet. Label scan courtesy of U.K. collector and musicologist Bill Dean-Myatt.

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