The Society was founded in 1941. The periodical has been published since July 1943.
From 1943 (Vol. 1) to 1977 (Vol. 1) the periodical was called Quarterly of the American Primrose Society. Starting with Vol. 2, 1977, it has been titled Primroses.
The first editor was Florence Levy. Her name changed to Florence Bellis later. She was the founder of the world-renowned Barnhaven nursery, which is now based in Brittany, France. She was editor until the end of 1952 and was responsible for the first nine volumes.
Until 1954, volumes did not coincide with the calendar year. The first issue of each volume came out in July, the second in October, the third in January of the following year, and the fourth in April.
Until the end of 1952, the issues were color-coded as follows:
July issues (issue #1 of each year) were backed with blue card (summer skies?)
October issues were light brown (for fall leaves?)
January issues were off-white (for snow?)
April issues were blue/green (for verdant spring growth?)
Summer 1967 (Volume 25, No. 3) was not a regular issue but a “Pictorial Dictionary of the Cultivated Species of the Genus Primula”. Back copies of this issue are difficult to obtain, but members who are logged in can find a free copy posted on this website under ‘Resources > APS Pictorial Dictionary’.
In the early years, one of the most faithful commercial advertisers was Acme of Vancouver, B.C., Canada, who eagerly promoted their “Blue Whale” soil amendment product.