Bundled Up For The Cold

Divided back, Real Photo Postcard, circa 1910s. CYKO stamp box.

Price:  $4.00

This particular style of CYKO stamp box enjoyed a pretty broad range, from about 1904 to the 1920s per Playle.com. Presuming with the divided back it would start at 1907 at the earliest, but I think the most likely time-frame for the photo might be the 1910s. The children look to be between about two to four years old, posing outside on the top porch step with wooden door behind them. The little guy wears a button-down wool sweater with dark contrasting band at the neck, cuffs and below the waist (the latter giving the sweater that tunic effect) short pants, high leather boots, mittens and a striped knit cap. The little girl wears some type of raised pile or plush coat that falls halfway below the knee, slightly puffed at the shoulder seam, leggings and hat of the same material and mittens. We’re guessing the ribbon bow was part of the bonnet, after seeing similar styles on Pinterest for a 1915 Sears & Roebuck ad.

In Our Front Yard

Old photo, circa early 1900s.

Price:  $3.00       Size:  About 4 and 1/8 x 2 and 1/2″

Gibson Girl hairstyles, sailor dresses, little brother and dog. Front yard posing in wintertime. There are no notes or i.d. written on the back, but imagine remembering the good time had by all. (Mabel, you were falling….That was your fault Eth, you were pulling me down!….) We can only see the back half of the dog, the boy is smiling looking straight into the camera, and what is he holding – could that be a folding pocket camera? The girls are clowning, and have tucked their long dresses into their boots, hanging on to each other in their best attempt to turn themselves into a 3-legged being. Behind them, their home, we presume. And in looking at the prior post (the two photos were found in the same pile) we wondered at first, if they could be some of the same girls, but likely not, this snapshot was probably taken earlier than the other….And what a heavenly front porch this must have been in summertime! Why was the wooden bench on the right turned over on it’s side? That’s another story!

Snow Maidens

Old photo, circa 1910s – 1920s.

Price:  $1.00       Size:  About 3 and 1/4 x 2 and 1/4″

Snow and laughter… here’s a great old photo for wintertime, no names (darn!) but wonderful just the same, of four young ladies, sisters or friends or a combination of both. They’re posed leaning on a snowbank with a house directly behind them. Note the nice porch supports. And are any of these girls the same as in the next upcoming snapshot? You be the judge!

Flora J. Van Fossen Calling Card

Victorian Era Calling Card, circa 1893

Price:  $7.00         Size:  About 3 and 3/8 x 1 and 5/8″

A lucky horseshoe, a spray of single-petaled pink roses and love….

This card appears to have been made for the Miss Flora J. Van Fossen, born Worcester, Pennyslvania, August 21, 1876, daughter of Josiah Van Fossen and Sarah Louise Jones. Flora married James Stroh January 5, 1894 in Camden, New Jersey. The marriage index record shows “Stroak” as the groom’s surname, no doubt a transcription error when viewing the original.

Sources:  “New Jersey, Marriages, 1670-1980,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:FZ2S-B31 : 31 March 2016), James R. Stroak and Flora J. Vanfossen, 05 Jan 1894; citing Camden, Camden, New Jersey, United States, Division of Archives and Record Management, New Jersey Department of State, Trenton.; FHL microfilm 495,719.

Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission; Pennsylvania, USA; Certificate Number Range: 004651-007200. Ancestry.com. Pennsylvania, Death Certificates, 1906-1964.

John Adams Handmade Calling Card

Handmade Victorian Era Calling Card

Price:  $6.00       Size:  4 and 3/4 x 1 and 1/16″

Some people collect old handmade cards; here’s our latest offering, and it’s sure a beauty. And certainly not by the early U.S. president but isn’t that what comes to mind when you hear the name John Adams (unless of course you are someone or know someone by this name?!)

T. A. Stephens Calling Card, January 1886

New Year’s Calling Card, January 1, 1886

Price:  $7.00         Size:  3 and 1/2 x 2″

It’s not often that you find a calling card with a date printed on it, and this one was made for the new year that was 1886. It’s not in pristine shape but in nice condition except for some soiling marks, especially considering its present age of 131 years old. The gold-tone edging has also held up well.  “A Happy New Year”  in block lettering is printed on the little fold, as well as a spray of pink flowers with stem and leaves artistically displayed to appear as if fastened to the card, bringing the bearer this small floral offering along with good wishes. The name  “T. A. Stephens”  and the date  “Jan. 1, 1886”  appear in printed script. Most likely it would have been made for a Mister rather than Miss or Mrs. and it’s tempting to start a search in records, if only to come up with a ballpark, maybe comical number of possibilities….

Okay we’ll cave, somewhat:  From U. S. city directories was he the attorney, T. A. who is (Thomas A.) Stephens in Portland, OR, the T. A. in Manatee, FL, the lady in Hennepin, MN? From the T. A. or Thomas A. possibilities from the 1880 Federal Census:  Was he the farmer in Bell County, TX, the clerk in Wilmington, DE, the attorney in Bodie, CA? The list goes on, and there’s probably about 25 possibilities within just the common first name possibility of Thomas and including T. A. It’s fun to imagine though….

Of Gaiters And Dairy Ranches

Divided back, used, embossed postcard. Postmarked January 3, 1933 from Buhl, Idaho. Number 327. Publisher unknown.

Price:  $4.00

Best New Years Wishes…

“To you dear friend

Sincere Greetings

I fondly send

This New Years Day.”

Well, we’re late in posting this per the above sentiment, but what a cute card, and I got to wondering if the little girl was wearing spats (the yellow footwear with side buttons)  – but no, spats (short for spatterdashes) or at least how we think of them today, were the shorter, over the ankle covers, so we would call these gaiters. It seems like the term gaiter underwent a full circle, first found in reference to how troops were outfitted, and per the article below, used for warmth as well as for spatter guards.

From The Pennsylvania Gazette in 1760.

19th-century ads for gaiters reveal various types….canvas, silk, lasting, button, laced, Congress, heeled (that gave it away right there)….come to find out gaiters had by then, become the popular word used to describe a half-boot form reminiscent of that two-tone affect where the leggings met over the shoe. But the word was also used loosely, for example, Congress gaiters were really a half-boot, of a style very common today.

Below, an advertisement from The Louisville Courier (Louisville KY). What’s “chrap” in the top ad? It was a little disappointing to find this was just a misprint!

From the website American Duchess some beautiful photos of women’s footwear in the category in question:   “Extant Victorian Side-Lacing Gaiters.”

Last but not least, and returning from our tangent above: We get a kick out of Hazel’s casual-sounding promise of the hopeful future endeavor outlined in her note. Did she find one? Whether she did or did not, we like her style. You go, girl!

“Dear Aunt Alice & all. I do hope you will all have a better year than the one ending. I am coming down there this summer and hunt me a dairy ranch. Love – Hazel.”

Addressed to:   “Mrs. Alice Ellison, 1015 O St., Sacramento, California.”

Sources: The Pennsylvania Gazette. April 24, 1760, Thursday. p. 2 (Newspapers.com)

“Extant Victorian Side-Lacing Gaiters.” January 13, 2014. American Duchess. Historical Costuming. (americanduchess.blogspot.com) Accessed January 11, 2017.

The Louisville Daily Courier. May 31, 1849, Thursday. p. 2 (Newspapers.com)

May The Fleeting Seasons

Divided back, used postcard. Postmarked December 23, 1922 from Sacramento, California. Publisher unknown.

Price:  $4.00

“May the fleeting seasons as they come and go

Each their richest gifts on you, my friend, bestow.”

We wish they were a little less fleeting, but here’s to beautiful moments in every season, with love and friendship to all! And this is a cute one, quite worn, but very adorable, and of course, part of our Alice Ellison collection. The “city” in the addressee’s “direction” to borrow an old term, is of course, Sacramento. And we find that postcard senders often distinguished this part of the address in just such a fashion, as this card was, for the time being anyway, staying within the city limits. The sender wrote:

“With best regards to you and the other girls from, O. K. Hughes. W. C. Co.”

Addressed to:   “Miss Ella Ellison, % Ennis Brown Co., City.”

The W. C. Company wasn’t found, though we did not spend too much time in the search, but here’s an Ennis-Brown ad from the California Fruit News, December 1922. Ella likely worked as a clerk for this fruit and produce company.

Source:  California Fruit News, December 16, 1922, Vol. 66, Number 1796. p. 16. (Google eBook).

The Little New Year

Divided back, embossed, used postcard. Postmarked December 29, 1914 from Lancaster, Kansas. Series NY-76. Publisher unknown.

Price:  $6.00

Greetings….

“The little New Year is about to appear.

I hope he will bring you all joy and good cheer.”

Does the Little New Year carry a cabbage? (Does the deer have a little doe? Yeah, two bucks! Couldn’t resist 😉 ) Back to the cabbage:  It would appear so, and that would be for good luck and prosperity. Here are a couple of great articles found regarding cabbage and the New Year:

“Why Mountain People Would Cook a Coin in Cabbage Each New Year”

This second one references the cabbage being punted thru the front door. Not quite what we have on the postcard but the lucky vegetable is on the doorstep.

“Kicking In The New Year By Punting Some Cabbage”

Below, a newspaper clipping that appeared in the New Oxford Item (New Oxford, PA) on January 5, 1922 on New Year luck, superstitions and courage:

On the reverse of the postcard:  Is that  “Best Wishes, Girls?”  Not sure who the signer of the card was, but they addressed it to:

J. H. Crane Esq., 842 Litchfield ave, Wichita, Kans.”   J.H., parents and siblings were found in the 1915 State Census at this address. Kansas native J. H. would have been about 23 when he received the postcard.

Sources:  “Why Mountain People Would Cook a Coin in Cabbage Each New Year.”  December 29, 2016. appalachianmagazine.com. (accessed 12/31/16.)

Spilman, Terri L. “Kicking In The New Year By Punting Some Cabbage.” January 1, 2012. thelaughingmom.wordpress.com. (accessed 12/31/16).

“New Year’s Lore.” New Oxford Item. January 5, 1922, p. 11. (newspapers.com).

Kansas State Historical Society; Topeka, Kansas; Roll: ks1915_218; Line: 13. Ancestry.com. Kansas State Census Collection, 1855-1925.

Old-Fashioned Christmas Happiness

Divided back, used postcard. Postmarked December 18, 1923 from Los Angeles, California. Made in the U.S.A. Series 1016 D. Publisher unknown.

Merry Christmas….

“Old-fashioned Christmas happiness

Is what I’m wishing you

And a host of good and loyal friends

To share the Day with you.”

A country scene of a home in winter, sunset colors painting the sky, all within the soft outline of a snow-laden evergreen tree…

The sender writes:   “Dear Grandma, I wish you all a happy Xmas. I am sending you a pkg. something for dossie and for Geo. Jr. But do not open untel Xmas, Love from all, Maebell.”

Addressed to:   “Mrs. J. M. Ellison, 604 N St., Sacramento, Calif.”