Jolly Jumping Jack

Divided back postcard. Postmarked December [?] 1919 from Sacramento, California. Copyright 1915. Publisher:  P. F. Volland & Company, Chicago, Illinois. Series or number 807.

Price:  $2.00

One more for now from The Alice Ellison Collection; our card shows an illustration of a child’s toy drum and jumping jack – in this case a monkey in a clown outfit.

“Jump, jolly jumping Jack;

Beat, booming drum;

Tell my little friend that

I wish I could come

To say to him gladly:

‘May Christmas for you

Be cheery and merry and

Jolly all through.’ “

Addressed to:   “Henrietta Ellison, 1314 F. St., City.”

“City,” of course is Sacramento, CA.

The sender wrote:   “Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from Miss Johnson.”

See Wikipedia’s entry for publisher P. F. Volland & Co. 

But what I really like about this card is the publisher’s Santa on the reverse (cleaned up in Photoshop). He with his handlebar mustache, holding the little candlelit tree…and that pointed beard, or is his beard tucked into his coat? (Your choice 🙂 )

Sources:  P. F. Volland Co. n.d. (accessed December 24, 2023).

Jumping Jack. n.d. shing%2C%20who,when%20the%20strings%20are%20tugged. (accessed December 24, 2023).

Indian Man With Monkeys RPPC

Divided Back, Real Photo Postcard, unused. Circa 1918 – 1936. Stamp Box:  K Ltd. 

Price:  $12.00

Jumping from Bali over to India, (at least, we presume this to be India), here’s a lovely, Real Photo Postcard of a man in a traditional style dress (the patterned portion is a lungi, I think) and cloth head covering. He likely has some fruit in his hand that the monkey is trying to get. You’ll see four monkeys in this image, probably all some type of macaque. The card is dated by virtue of the K Ltd type of stamp box.

Sources:  “What are the differences between Lungi and Dhoti?” February 23, 2021. (accessed July 26, 2022).

Joherey, Janhvi. “10 Native Monkeys of India – With Photos.” January 30, 2017. (accessed July 26, 2022).

“Real Photo Postcard Stamp Boxes, K – L.” (accessed July 26, 2022).


A Singer For The Girls

A Singer For The Girls tc1A Singer For The Girls tc2

Trade card. Circa 1910 – 1914.  Publisher unknown, Form 1653.   Size:  5 and 1/4 x 3 and 1/2″

Price:  $15.00

True, this trade card is not in the best of shape, with some major creasing at the top right, and the name Ella written in childlike handwriting on the front and back (Ella Ellison.) But as of the date of this posting, there do not appear to be any others showing online (though Pinterest shows an ad of the same design that contains some added wording and appears in brighter colors.) Anyway, the front shows a charming illustration of a little girl in pink, seated at a small wooden table, sewing on the Singer 20. Her dolly in high chair is keeping her company, as well as her toy monkey (looking rather politically incorrect) who is seated on the table. The front of the card reads:

“A Singer for the Girls. Not a Toy But A Practical Singer Sewing Machine. Price $3.00.”

The back shows:   “The Singer ’20’  Practical and Instructive. Useful and Amusing. Price $3.00”  and an illustration of the machine with a girl’s face in the center.

Here are two excellent websites regarding this model:   Alex I. Askaroff’s,  The Sewalot Site and  ISMACS International.

According to Alex Askaroff, the Singer 20 was made at the Elizabeth factory in New Jersey, starting around 1910. It was first billed as a toy, but those in charge must have quickly realized the value of marketing for adults as well. (See the second link for the illustration of the machine fitting in the palm of the hand.) Later called the Sewhandy, production ran all the way until the 1970s, with some changes along the way, of course. The original name came from it’s being the 20th unique machine after Isaac Singer’s very first model No.1 (awarded patent No.1 in 1851). The Singer 20 was the most popular of any toy sewing machine, came in different colors, was copied by other manufacturers after patents ran out, sold worldwide and manufactured in other countries. This particular trade card is said to be pre-WWI.

Sources:  Askaroff, Alex I., “Singer Toy Sewing Machine.”  Sewalot. Web accessed May 17, 2015.

“Singer No. 20.”  ISMACS International. Web accessed May 17, 2015.