Cupid’s Diary

Divided back, embossed postcard. Postmarked February 7, 1914 from Pueblo, Colorado. Copyright 1909, H. or K.[?] Wessler. Publisher:  S. L. & Co. 

Price:  $10.00

Publisher, S. L. & Co. is Sigmund Langsdorf & Co.

This card, another in our Alice Ellison Collection, was one in a series that told the story of Cupid’s day – sharpening arrows, mailing valentines and breaking his bow after all the work was done. In ours, Cupid is looking quite tired, not to mention a little beat up, so the card above must have been the last one, or second to last, in the set.

“His spoils were great,

But sad to tell,

Poor Cupids’ suffered

Just as well.”

Addressed to:   “Mr. J. M. Ellison, 730 P. St., Sacramento, Calif.”

The sender wrote:  “Dear Papa. It snowed here last night. We are all well and hope you are to. It will soon be valentine day so I am sending you a Valentine card. from Henrietta Ellison. [?] got me a new pair of shoes.”

Roses For My Valentine

Divided back, embossed, unused postcard. Printed in Germany. Valentine Postcard Series No. 405. Publisher unknown. Circa 1907 – 1914.

Price:  $1.00

Valentine Greetings…..

To Miss Ella Ellison from Mary Strauch.

One from our Alice Ellison Collection. (A group of about 125 cards; they’re not all up on the website yet.) This one’s a little beat up and with a coffee stain at the top but contains a publisher mystery. We’ve seen this logo before, a capital G inside a rectangular artist’s palette with brushes attached, but haven’t found proof of the company name, to date.

The Whole Year Through

Divided back, embossed postcard. Postmarked December 29, 1922 from Blue Canyon, California. Publisher:  Julius Pollak, New York.

Price:  $10.00

For information on the postcard’s publisher, see “Publisher Julius Pollak.”

Another from The Alice Ellison Collection, this one with bells ringing under snow-covered evergreen boughs.

A Happy New Year

“May every day

the whole year through

Prove a happy one for you.”

Addressed to:   “Mr. & Mr. Ellison, 1314 F – St., Sacramento, Cal.”

The card is signed,  “Greetings from Julius.”  Now, being that the publisher’s given name is Julius, this makes us wonder if it was possible that maybe he was running some type of promotion, and then if the Ellisons were collectors or they purchased a pack of cards…..What seems to add to the idea is the sender’s rather flourish-y signature, perhaps in line with someone who would have owned his own business……Okay, probably the odds are very low, but the idea holds that glimmer of potential, enough to make us wonder.

And, as far as we can tell from online searches, this Blue Canyon, California postmark is rare, so the card is perhaps of historical interest to someone for that reason. According to the Wikipedia entry this particular postmark iteration ran from 1867 – 1927. Here’s a crop from the card:

Source:  Blue Canyon, California. n.d.,_California (accessed January 3, 2024).

The Best of Health – A Share of Wealth

Divided back, used postcard. Postmarked from Galt, California, December 28, year unknown, circa late 1910’s – early 1920’s. Made in United States. Publisher:  J. P., New York (Julius Pollak). 

Price:  $5.00

For information on the postcard’s publisher, see “Publisher Julius Pollak.”

From The Alice Ellison Collection, a nice one for the New Year:  A leaded, Gothic Arch-style window, lit from within; set in a stone building (church, home or tavern) snow clinging to the window ledge and stonework. Somewhat superimposed on this scene, two bluebirds sit on a holly branch while a third comes in for a landing.

New Year Greetings

“The best of health – a share of wealth

Be yours this coming year,

But best of all – a host of friends

To fill your days with cheer.”

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

The sender wrote:   “Just a line to say I may be at church Sunday, but will have to come home on the first car. Hope I will see you at church. Wish you all a Happy New Year, your friend, Mrs. Hame.”

That signature is a little hard to read but I believe the surname is Hame. On the 1920 Federal Census for Alabama Township, Sacramento County, CA, there is a Mrs. Artha Hame, married to a Charles J. Hame. Her maiden name is Stout:  We’re given her maiden name on this census by virtue of the fact that two of her brothers are living in the household.

Alabama Township doesn’t show up online today, but from an 1885 map it was situated in the southeast portion of Sacramento County. You would have traveled west to get to the town of Galt. (Enlarge to see Galt appearing in the neighboring township of Dry Creek.)

Sources:  Year: 1920; Census Place: Alabama, Sacramento, California; Roll: T625_127; Page: 5A; Enumeration District: 69. (

Official Map of Sacramento County. (1885). Library of Congress.,0.711,0.535,0.215,0.

Galt. n.d.,_California. (accessed January 2, 2024).

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).

Poinsettia Christmas Wishes

Divided back postcard. Postmarked December 17, 1923. Publisher unknown. Series 1013 B. Made in U.S.A.

Price:  $2.00

Christmas Wishes

“My wishes for your

Christmas hours

Are just as bright as

these gay flowers.”

Yet another card from The Alice Ellison Collection. Poinsettias in the foreground and behind, we looking out on some evergreens and a winter scene. The publisher on this one is unknown. Maddeningly, I’m without access to the best postcard i.d. reference – Walter E. Corson’s Publisher’s Trademarks Identified. (My only copy got water damage and mold – it’s a long story – and in a fit of disgust I tossed it out along with a bunch of other stuff. Definitely, the letting go of “things” is a heavenly feeling of freedom but I probably should have made an exception on that one.) One presumes that the publisher name starts with “S” since that letter appears in the oval underneath the lovely back header, rather fancy with its scroll-y curvy lines.

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

The sender wrote:   “Many good wishes to all The family as ever your sister Annie.”

A Christmas Wish From Wallace Stoebe

Divided back postcard. Postmarked December 20, 1916 from Alta Loma, California. Publisher:  F. A. Owen Company, Dansville, New York. Series or number 444D.

Price:  $5.00                                 

Here’s another Christmas card from The Alice Ellison Collection. This collection is from a good friend’s husband’s family, so we won’t trace Alice but in this case we’ll put up a little info on the sender, Wallace, who sent this winter countryside scene with the following sentiments:

My Christmas Wish

“May the Good Luck Fairy

Knock blithely on your door

And into your household

Countless blessings pour.”

Addressed to:   “Miss Henrietta Ellison, 1415 G. St., Sacramento, California.”

The sender wrote:   “Dear Henry, I wish you a Merry Xmas Happy New Year. Wallace Stoebe.”

Wallace Theodore Stoebe was born February 10, 1908 in Humboldt, Iowa, the son of Charles A. Stoebe and Emily Laura (Fry) Stoebe. So, he would have been eight years old when he made sure to remember his friend, “Henry” in Sacramento.

Sources:  National Archives at St. Louis; St. Louis, Missouri; Wwii Draft Registration Cards For California, 10/16/1940-03/31/1947; Record Group: Records of the Selective Service System, 147; Box: 1743. (

Find a Grave, database and images ( accessed 23 December 2023), memorial page for Emily Laura Fry Stoebe (9 Mar 1879–17 May 1930), Find a Grave Memorial ID 136389147, citing Bellevue Memorial Park, Ontario, San Bernardino County, California, USA; Maintained by Chloé (contributor 47159257).

Merry Christmas From Lentie

Divided back postcard. Postmarked December 22, 1923 from Fresno, California. Series or number 30, publisher unknown.

Price:  $4.00

Another from The Alice Ellison Collection.

A Merry Christmas…..

A very nice scene on this one:  Partially framed with snow covered holly, a mother and son walk back from church. (We’ll take liberties with interpreting.) But there’s the church in the background, and the artist has conveyed, on this very small scale, a moment in time between mother and son.

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

The sender wrote:   “Fresno – Sat.    Dear Aunt:-  Loyd is better today & sitting up. Oh we sure have had a time with him, as he certainly has been a sick child. He looks so bad but I feel now that the worst is all over. Cordie gets no vacation. Lots of love Lentie.”

We’ll trust that Loyd made a full recovery and was soon out playing in the Fresno sunshine!

Merry Xmas From the Harms Family

Divided back, embossed postcard. Postmarked December 23, 1921 from Sacramento, California. Publisher unknown. Series C-368.

Price:  $1.00

Greetings for Christmas

“I wish you a bright Christmas:

May gladness, like a sail,

Carry your ship through happy seas,

And joy and hope prevail.”

Addressed to:   “Mrs Ellison, 1314 F. St, Sacramento, Calif.”

The sender wrote:   “We wish you a very Merry Xmas and Happy New Year. The Harms family.”

A one hundred and two year-old card this time, almost to the day, and it’s another from The Alice Ellison Collection. Nice calming sailboat scene, draped with holly and a peach-colored ribbon. Nice sentiments in the verse, too. (Ditto from Laurel Cottage to you all.)

Merry Xmas From Frank Bennetts

Divided back, embossed postcard. Postmarked December 18, 1917 from Sacramento, California. Publisher unknown.

Price:  $1.00

Friendly Greetings…….To you my friend, All joy at this happy season.

Addressed to:   “Miss Ella Ellison, 1314 – F St., Sacramento, Cal.”

Signed:   “Merry Xmas. Frank Bennetts.

Christmas season is upon us again! Time has done its usual trick – lots of time, lots of time, then wham, you’re running behind. We have a number of Christmas postcards that belong to The Alice Ellison Collection. None of these Ellison cards that will be put up this year are particularly spectacular, many are beat up, but up they will go anyway, and we’ll see if we come across anything interesting in them. Personally, I will always find something….It’s a hundred and six year-old item….Enlarging the scene and getting lost in it….That bell with the holly laying in the snow – ha, somebody dropped it, I guess. And, if anyone is looking for anything from Frank Bennetts (likely of Sacramento) well, here is something – not much but it does tell us he was friends with the Ellisons, and if you’re searching it’s always nice to get another small piece of the puzzle.

And in enlarging the card to, indeed, get lost in the scene, we see an odd combo for that church – with its castle-like tower topped with the onion-like dome, and an onion dome in the back, too. So……a Russian emigrant was the artist for this one? Yeah, we think this crazy stuff. 😉