Compliments of Domestic S. M. Co.

Domestic Sewing Machine Company trade card, circa 1880s – 1890s.

Price:  $7.00             Size:  3 and 1/8 x 4 and 7/8″

Here’s a nice restful scene to gaze upon – and one of many trade cards to be found for the Domestic Sewing Machine Company. If you search old newspapers online look for them under the shorter version Domestic S. M. Co. Below, an early ad, from 1872. Love the line directed toward any non-Domestic sewing machine sales reps,  “It don’t pay you to fight the best Machine.” 

For detailed info on Domestic we found a good site for s.m. co.s (Getting into the spirit of the times, lingo-wise 😉  )

Domestic Sewing Machine Company

Sources:  “The ‘Light Running’ Domestic.” Nashville Union and American. (Nashville, TN). November 17, 1872. Sunday, p. 2. (Newspapers.com).

“The Domestic Sewing Machine Co.”. Fiddlebase.com. (Accessed August 3, 2019.)

Forget-me-nots and Seagulls

Divided back, embossed postcard. Postmarked May 11, 1913 from Elwood, Nebraska. Series or number G10.

Price:  $5.00

“Only a message sweet and true

Saying I think today of you.”

Addressed to:   “Miss Lena Davis, Almena Kans.”

“May 10       Dear Cousin, We are all well having fine weather. I have 109 little chicks my housecleaning done and garden planted. The wheat look fine. Fred is listing corn he has been sick but better now. The boys grow fast and play out doors all the time. From Your Cousin Alice.”

Have been away from posts (alas) for some time. This seems to be a common refrain lately (sigh). Anyway! Here’s one from our Lena Davis Collection (hey, Lena 🙂 ) of a beautiful sunset on a lake (lake as in Great Lakes comes to mind, being a Michigander) with sailboat, seagulls and is partially framed by forget-me-nots. Flipping to the back to read the message from Lena’s cousin Alice, we jump from lakeside to a rural farm setting of chicks, wheat and corn……What woman cannot relate to this sense of accomplishment,  “I have my 109 little chicks, housekeeping done and garden planted.”  Time to kick back on the front porch with an ice-cold lemonade (while of course, keeping an eye on the boys, ever-multi-tasking 😉  ).

And, yes, Fred is really “listing” corn. He would have used a piece of farm equipment similar to the one pictured below, planting the kernels in the furrows (the ditches) so the corn could root deeper in the soil and the roots could be covered later, thus protecting them in times of drought.

Source:  Widtsoe, John Andreas. Dry Farming:  A System of Agriculture for Counties Under Low Rain Fall. New York:  The McMillan Company, 1911. (archive.org).

U.S.S. Richmond At Balboa, Panama

Old photo, circa 1920s. Balboa, Panama.

Price:  $25.00        Size:  About 4 and 1/4 x 3 and 1/8″

Richmond at Balboa

As it turns out, there are two ships here, one directly behind the other. Which one is Richmond is uncertain, but one might assume she’s the one in the forefront. As to the date, the Wikipedia entry lists Richmond as being at Panama both in 1924 and 1942, but our guess is the earlier decade, both from the look of the photo and the similarity to the following image of Balboa, found online at Library of Congress, which is estimated to have been taken between 1908 and 1919:

Panama Canal Zone, town of Balboa

Sources:  U.S.S. Richmond (CL-9). n.d. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Richmond_(CL-9). Accessed May 27, 2019.

Panama Canal Zone, town of Balboa. , None. [Between 1908 and 1919] Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/2016821455/.

Loch Lomond By E. Longstaffe

Postcard, unused. Artist-signed by E. Longstaffe. Publisher unknown. Circa 1904 -1905.

Price:  $5.00

Continuing with our short excursion to Scotland….an artist-signed card by English landscape painter, Edgar Longstaffe (1852 – 1933). The few others currently for sale online are dated from 1904 and 1905 (though were put out by other publishers). This particular offering is not in the best shape – the layers of paper comprising the card are starting to peel away from each other, but since Scotland had seemed to be a somewhat neglected area of my collection, I was happy to find this card and include it here.

Source:  Edgar Longstaffe. n.d. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edgar_Longstaffe (accessed August 8, 2018).

Choose The Best Shade

Trade Card. J & P Coats. Circa1880s – 1890s.

Price:  $15.00               Size:  About 4 and 1/8 x 2 and 5/8″

Such a pretty card and with a clever caption! The stripes going through the waves remind me of the zigzag pattern in clothes that has materialized (just a happy coincidence on the pun) on the scene in the world of fashion in recent years, and the design on the back of the card that surrounds the lettering in bold, is delicate and almost mechanical-looking.

J & P Coats you will instantly recognize as a mega company in the world of thread. I checked my sewing tin just now and found all the labels as either Coats, under the current Coats Group logo, Clark O.N.T. (Our New Thread) or Coats & Clark.

Sources:  Coats Group. n.d. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coats_Group (accessed February 25, 2018).

Coats. TRC Leiden. (accessed February 25, 2018).

Twelve In A Skiff

Divided back, Real Photo Postcard, unused. Circa 1907 – 1918. AZO stamp box.

Price:  $4.00

A nice family photo made into a postcard, circa 1907 – 1918, showing twelve family members in a skiff named Elizabeth, either just about to head out on the water or just returned. Most likely the latter though because there’s the family dog, laying down in the sand (tired after all the excitement, swimming, etc?) and there’s one of the kids huddled in a towel. This RPPC would be a nice reference for the era’s bathing suits, family outings at the lake, and that type of thing. Love those bathing caps!

Young Man’s Dream, Circa 1910

Two pals in Newsboy caps, skinny tie, bow tie and sweaters

Our guy from the top left, looking distinguished and contemplative, with pipe

Divided back, Real Photo Postcards, unused. Cyko stamp box. Circa 1910.

Price for the set of two:  $35.00

I had just spent a ridiculous amount of time comparing these two images to see how they were done. 🙂 Looks like the charming lake scene of an attractive young woman on a lake, with a partial border of lilies (very Art Nouveau) is the same size on both cards, one being just the reverse of the other. The shaped border, however, is slightly larger on the second postcard, so that part must have involved a separate process, then, of course, arranging the trimmed photos in the border would be next….but why dissect? The end result is beautiful and unusual, and possibly two-of-a-kind.

One can’t help but look for an artist name though, and in so doing might imagine seeing a signature (John something) in the shadow of the oar (top image) but a name glimmering on the water, so to speak, could just be coincidence.

As for time-frame, I’m guessing late 1900s to mid-1910s, in looking for men’s narrow necktie style, women wearing neckties, Art Nouveau, etc. There do not seem to be many examples of women in neckties in the 1900s – 1910s, and that was surprising. But here’s one below in the bottom right corner from a Google search for the popular British actress, Madge Crichton:

Mostly Madge

A 1910 advertisement from The Marion Star:

Sources:  Art Nouveau. n.d. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Art_Nouveau (accessed July 1, 2017).

“Images for old postcards Madge Crichton.”  Google search, July 1, 2017. Google.com.

Marx Bros. & Hess collar and necktie ad. The Marion Star, (Marion, OH) May 14, 1910. Saturday, p. 7. (Newspapers.com)

Houseboat Heaven

Vintage photo, circa 1920s – 1930s.

Price:  $6.00         Size:  4 and 1/4 x 2 and 5/8″

Three ladies

I love houseboats:  There is something so romantic about them (riverboats, too.) So “houseboat heaven” came to mind immediately upon finding the photo, and the term stuck (and never got unstuck, lol. That’s redundant but, no matter.) But I realize, as I’m posting this, that the watercraft in question could be something other than the type involved in my (just now identified) longing to set up house on the water or meander down a river in rustic comfort. Rather than houseboat, the vessel could be a small ferry….In any case, the image shows a woman posed, relaxing on an inside railing, smiling for the camera. On our left we see a partial view of the woman’s friend, in flounced dress, her hand on one of the thin uprights. You get the feeling she’s chatting with someone outside of the picture. Both ladies are elegantly dressed. And the vessel….is charming:  nothing too fancy, wooden, with her “house” portion curving around, and a shallow, covered deck off of the house, as part of the bigger deck surface as a whole. Note the nice scroll work above the door and the scalloped roof edging….All-in-all, a beautifully captured moment, from a casually elegant or elegantly casual 😉 evening spent on the water, with good friends. (That includes the boat!)

Sea Gull – A Boat

Divided Back, Real Photo Postcard, unused. Circa 1907 – 1918.

Price:  $6.00

Per Playle’s (a great reference for dating RPPCs, thus we use it all the time) this particular style of AZO stamp box, with all four triangles pointing up, is dated at 1904 – 1918, however, since it’s a divided back card, it would need to be December 1907 at the earliest. The type of watercraft is, for me, non-boat expert that I am, in question. Houseboat…?…. maybe, maybe not. In any case, we see her name on the bow,  “Sea Gull.”  And there’s the vague image of the skipper at the helm, standing, facing the sun. Amidships (can this term be used for small craft?) we see the silhouette of a seated man in a hat. On shore, in the background are some buildings and a large stand of evergreens.

Source:  “Real Photo Postcard Stamp Boxes. A – B.” playle.com. (accessed June 13, 2017).

Hotel Delos, Mykonos, Greece, 1950s

Divided back, Real Photo Postcard. Publisher:  Leonar. Circa 1950s – 1960s.

Price:  $10.00        Size:  5 and 7/8 x 4″

Boats and waterfront scene on Mykonos (Horus) Cyclades Islands, Greece

The cars in this photo are possibly late 1950s, at least the one might be…if it’s a 1957 Plymouth (the one with the “fin” on the quarter panel – quarter panel being in the rear as opposed to fender which is the term used for the front – this info from my mechanic hubby.) But was much time spent looking at various cars to try to narrow down the era? No. And no time was spent trying to identify the watercraft (from experience this can be a very time-consuming endeavor.) In any case, our best guess is late ’50s early ’60s.

As far as the most identifiable business in the photo, that of the Hotel Delos, I believe the location must have changed at some point, as a current aerial photo found online shows no buildings to the left of the hotel, and a “stock photo” found of the building no longer shows the hotel’s name on the front. The cropped version below, gives us a better look at the two cars to our right, and the hotel on our left:

Source:  Mykonos. n.d. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mykonos (accessed April 04/02/17).