e•fem'•e•ra, n. [Gr. ephemeros, lasting but a day - epi, and hemera, a day] Something of very short duration or existence; a collective name for reviews, magazines, and all kinds of periodical literature.

On this page you will find:

The Original Imperial Sales Brochure,

Magazine Ads for the 1961 Imperial,

Original Owner's Manual

Original Color Chip and Paint Key Pages from DuPont & Ditzler

"Car Life" Magazine Road Test of 1961 Imperial

"Car Collector" Magazine 1985 Imperial Retrospective



Every Dealer has brochures for their products. Imperial has never been different in that way. The brochure projects the image that the manufacturer and designer believe will attract those buyers the car was designed to attract. Of course, in the case of the Imperial, those are the folks we would now call 'upscale', 'high demographic' consumers. These cars are sold on an image of upper crust existence and the illustrations, set at the finest hotels, country clubs, and an embassy suggest that 'Your life, too, can be this way - with an Imperial.'

Notice the level of technology, not in the content, but in the presentation! There are no photographs, not even of the car itself! Everything is hand-made art. Look at the colors. It's not time that has dulled them, but the limitations of the printers' tools. Still, the paper is of the highest quality. It has not yellowed at all in almost 40 years. The printing registration (color-to-color) is flawless. The art itself is a joy to the eye. Have you ever tried to draw from life and then place that object convincingly in an imaginary background?

I noticed something else as I studied the brochure here and the the backsides of the magazine ads below. There is a miltary theme. Look at the scenes by the submarines at the Navy Docks. On the backs of the magazine ads were trade ads for Chance-Vought Aircraft (fighters, not civil transports!) and other clues that the ads came from magazines aimed at the officers and leaders of the American military. When is the last time you saw a military officer in dress whites in a car ad? In 1961, in the Cold War, before Vietman (well, sort of), before Watergate, our Government and especially, our Armed Forces were public heroes. Think of John Glenn's recent spaceflight and imagine him as young man, with that same Can-Do mindset, in a country whose GNP was more than 50% of the entire world GNP! It was a time of American Imperialism in the very best of senses.

Immediately below are small images of the 1961 Imperial brochure. I actually have two brochures, one about 8 1/2 x 12, one about 10 x 16. They are identical but for size. These are taken from the smaller one, because it fits into the scanner. You may click on the images or titles to open a page with full size images.

  Page 1 (Front Cover)





Page 2 & Page 3






Page 4 & Page 5






Page 6 & Page 7






Page 8 & Page 9






Page 10 & Page 11






Page 12 & Page 13






Page 14 & Page 15






Page 16 (Back Cover)





Wasn't that GREAT?! I hope you find it worthwhile. 



I have no idea what magazines these ads originally graced. These come to me with my teal car , Subtle XS, from the former owner. They came in poly bags with cardboard inserts so they are clean and flat and made for excellent scanning. See my cultural notes in the Brochure section for thoughts about the magazines where they ran.

There are four Ads here: a Red, White, and two Black Imperials. I do not know if this is the complete set. It may be, because accurately reproducing less basic colors in a magazine screen would have been difficult and costly then, when only the biggest ads would have color at all.


Click on the Images to get full size ones.

Aren't these Wonderful? Look at the Aesthetic embodied here. Look at the Power and Majesty and sheer Projection of that Title, that Eagle. Look at the Mirror-finish floor. LOOK at those Models!! The styles they wear are period, of course, but geez, the Moms in my neighborhood never dressed like that! I hope you enjoy the ride back to when America OWNED the world - and it showed.



Here is a mini-scan of the manual that came with every 1961 Imperial. I got mine in a tent at the 2001 Antique Car Show in Bennington, VT. Twenty-Five Dollars and Cheap at That. Very Good Condition, too. The cover is a leather grain heavy card, with a translucent vellum inner liner bearing the eagle and showing through a cut out in the cover.

The Thumbnails are links to full-scal files if you want to print your own!

That's 22 images in all. I hope you enjoy them. It's only been forty years, but already the very feel of the language has changed dramatically (compare a current model manual). And there are not fifty pages of safety warnings in the front, either! Were people smarter then? Or just less aware?




Here are some pages from the paint manufacturers themselves, showing the original colors in their unfaded glories (I have several copies of these, and they all match so I doubt there's been much fade).



  As with the brochure, click on an Image to get a full-size view.

Ditzler Colors


1961 Road Test from "Car Life" Magazine



(CLICK on Page to get full-size view)



1985 Imperial Reminiscences from "Car Collector" Magazine

Just to show that I'm not COMPLETELY besotted ONLY with 1961 Imperials,

Here's a retrospective article on all modern Imperials:

(CLICK on Page to get full-size view)


That's All for Now, I hope you have enjoyed this page. So Long for Now, from 1961!


If any of you viewers share my interest in Imperials, Design, Color, or Culture, please write!

You can get me at john.corey@chartindustries.com by email. We'll take it from there!


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