Walter Wetzel, Red Lodge, Montana, 1922

Old photo. August 8, 1922, Red Lodge, Carbon County, Montana.

Price:  $15.00       Size:  4 and 1/8 x 2 and 3/8″

Here’s a beautiful photo of a man in jeans and cowboy hat, standing, holding the reins of two horses. On the back we have the i.d. showing,  “Aug 8/22. Walter Wetzel. Red Lodge, Montana.”  To our right, in the photo, is a rudimentary-looking log cabin (no windows) and in the background, snow covered mountains of the (assuming) Beartooth Mountain Range. In searching records for a Walter Wetzel that might fit this photo we find a Walter W. Wetzel (1902 – 1953) a well-known forester, who married Elva Ellis. A newspaper clipping from 1927 that announced the couple’s marriage license, stated Elva was a resident of Red Lodge. But how old is the man in the photo? My first impression was of someone about age fifty, albeit a very fit age fifty. But he could certainly be much younger. It’s hard to tell because of the lighting and the distance the photo was taken from.

At The Rodeo

Vintage photo, white border, circa 1950s.

Price:  $3.00         Size:  About 3 and 1/2 x 2 and 1/2″

A great vintage snapshot:  a cowboy, or maybe vaquero would be more appropriate, riding a saddled bull or steer, posing for the camera, with a great smile. Looks like this was taken at a rodeo or rodeo fairgrounds due to the loudspeaker behind the bovine and rider. Hopefully someone will fill us in on the breed of the animal.

“Wild Bill” Hickok

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“77 – ‘Wild Bill,’ winner of 32 pistol duels, the quickest and best shot that ever lived. Buried in Mt. Moriah Cemetery, Deadwood, Black Hills, S.D.”

James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok, (1837 – 1876) was a law enforcer, gambler and folk hero of the Old West. Since so much has already been written about “Wild Bill,” we turned our attention to the question of when this postcard may have been produced. The front shows  “Copyrighted 1908 by W. B. Perkins, Jr.”  William Bradford Perkins, Jr. was a photographer who lived in the Lead area, Lawrence County, SD, and he must have bought or otherwise acquired the rights to this image, since Find A Grave  shows Perkins was born in 1863 and died in 1914.

The flip side of the postcard shows  “Distributed by Black Hills Post Card Co., Deadwood, S.D.”  and the well known publisher/printer Curteich with  “Genuine Curteich-Chicago ‘C.T. American Art’ Post Card (Reg. U.S. Pat. Off.)”  According to the oft-visited MetroPostcard site, the Black Hills Post Card Company operated from 1919 – 1952. This card is “non-linen” though, so it may be more likely to be pre-1930. Also, the number “77” appearing on the front does not seem to fit any years for Curteich’s own numbering system which would have been helpful in dating the postcard.

Divided back, unused postcard. Circa 1919 – 1930. Copyright W. B. Perkins, Jr. Distributed by Black Hills Post Card Co., Deadwood, S.D. Publisher info:  Genuine Curteich-Chicago “C.T. American Art” Post Card (Reg. U.S. Pat. Off.)

Price:  $8.00

A match….

An image of the original photo that this postcard was produced from can be found online on more than one website (source unknown) however, the second photo below appears to have been taken around the same time frame. Note the same (or very similarly styled hat and jacket) but different pants, shirt and chair.

James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok. Circa 1868 – 1870.

Wild Bill

Wild Bill Hickok 1868 to 1870

The above (Courtesy Wikipeda Commons) is said to have been originally in Carte de Visite (CDV) format, made by the New River Side Gallery, Topeka, Kansas, and taken around 1868 – 1870.

Sources:  Wild Bill Hickok. n.d. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wild_Bill_Hickok. (accessed May 23, 2015).

Find A Grave Memorial# 25581065. Find A Grave. Web accessed May 23, 2015.

Year: 1900; Census Place: Lead City, Lawrence, South Dakota; Roll: 1551; Page: 34B; Enumeration District: 0027; FHL microfilm: 1241551. (Ancestry.com)

Year: 1910; Census Place: Lead Ward 3, Lawrence, South Dakota; Roll: T624_1483; Page: 2B; Enumeration District: 0046; FHL microfilm: 1375496. (Ancestry.com)

Black Hills Post Card Co. (1919 – 1952). Metropostcard. Web accessed May 23, 2015.

File: Wild Bill Hickok c1868-70.png. n.d. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wild_Bill_Hickock_c1868-70.png. (accessed May 23, 2015).

Out In The Old West

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If this one doesn’t look like a publicity photo for an Old Western movie or t.v. show, then I don’t what does. It’s a great Real Photo Postcard, no names or photographer name, but what a beautiful shot! Yes, the younger woman is a little washed out due to the sunlight, I believe, but we can still see the delicate high lace collar she wears along with some type of small brooch. The young man’s hat in particular, with the shortish squared-off crown and short brim:  I’m not sure what type it is, some might say similar to one that General Robert E. Lee wore. (This after looking online through lots and lots of hat photos.) We also note the young man’s pin-striped long jacket and perhaps silk tie. The older man appears in wire spectacles, sack suit, and small bow tie fastened at the removable collar. And there’s the matriarch of the family, seated in a beautiful wooden chair. She looks like she may be the mother of the younger woman, or perhaps mother all three, since we don’t notice a wedding ring on the older man’s hand. And, as a whole, the poses of the four and their expressions, with the sunlight reflecting off of the bare tree branches, especially beautiful reflecting off of the windowpanes, the rustic wooden porch railing and the mountains in the background….

Divided back, Real Photo Postcard, unused. Circa 1907 – 1915.

Price:  $18.00

Harve Marsing And Alma Thayn

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Here’s a Real Photo Postcard that was found recently at The Vintage Paper Fair in San Francisco and shows a great sepia-toned photo (even though faded or light) of two men on horseback, with their likely location being Utah, estimated dated about 1912 – 1915.

As it turns out Harve Marsing, a.k.a Harva or Harvey (on the left) is the nephew of Alma Thayn, also spelled Thayne (on the right.) Harve Marsing’s parents are Alma Marsing and Annabelle Thayne. Alma Thayne and Annabelle Thayne are brother and sister. Their parents are John L. Thayne and Annabelle (sometimes spelled Annabellia or Annabella) Reid. Harve looks to be maybe about 16 – 18 years of age, making Alma about 27 – 30 years of age in the photo. Harve Marsing was born July 11, 1897 (some records show 1896 but his WWI Draft Registration shows he recorded 1897.) Alma Thayne was born December 30, 1885. Both men were born in Utah.

Divided back, Real Photo Postcard, unused with writing. AZO stamp box. Circa 1912 – 1915.

Availability status:  SOLD

Sources:  Edmund West, comp.. Family Data Collection – Individual Records [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: “Marriage of John Lehi Thayne to Annabell Reid.” (Ancestry.com)

“Utah, County Marriages, 1887-1937,” index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/VRLC-MV8 : accessed 29 Jul 2014), Alma Marsing and Annie Thayne, 27 Jul 1895; citing , Wasatch, Utah, United States; FHL microfilm 0482527.

Year: 1900; Census Place: Desert Lake, Emery, Utah; Roll: 1683; Page: 17B; Enumeration District: 0197; FHL microfilm: 1241683. (Ancestry.com)

“United States World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918”, index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/29N1-Q8N : accessed 29 Jul 2014), Harvey Marsing, 1917-1918.

Find A Grave Memorial# 38316496 for Alma Thayne. (findagrave.com)