Lulu And Paulie Kalunas, Brooklyn, 1915

Divided back, Real Photo Postcard, unused with writing. December 19, 1915. AZO stamp box.

Price:  $15.00

Continuing on with our cold weather theme, a mother and son in Brooklyn, NY posing in winter coats and hats….

A proud mom, Mrs. Lulu Kalunas, writes about her four and a half year old son, who we found in records as Ivan Paul Kalunas, born June 2, 1911 in New York. We take into account that photos were not a dime a dozen in those days, hence the detailed explanation as to young Paul’s expression:

“Brooklyn, N. Y. Dec. 19, 1915. To Ratchel, From Lu Lu. Paulie is 4 years & 6 months old, and has golden hair & dark brown eyes. Note the peculiar expression of his mouth. Paulie has a pretty mouth, but he closed it too tight. He was afraid of the photographer, maybe ???”

Lulu is Clara Louise Dawson (or Louise Clara) born New Jersey, January 1887. On the 1900 Federal Census for Brooklyn, she is living with her mother Clara, stepfather Frederick Koster, and younger sister Helen. It must have been a family member that had written Lulu’s name in pen on the card, and now we can see that what looks like “Kodu” is actually Koster.

The 1920 Federal Census for Brooklyn showing the surname misspelled as “Kluanas” lists Paul’s father as born in Riga, Russia (now Latvia) and Lulu working as a pianist at a theater. Their address is 11a Woodbine St.

The 1925 New York State Census shows Lulu and Paul listed twice:  Clara and Paul Kalunas living with Fred and May Koster (stepfather and May must be Lulu’s mother) and again as Lulu and Ivan P. Kalunas, with Lulu as head of household. Looking at the census one imagines a conglomeration of apartments, and maybe 11 Woodbine St., apt. A, had a separate entrance and the census taker was unaware that he’d been to the same household twice. Just a thought!

Sources:  Year: 1900; Census Place: Brooklyn Ward 28, Kings, New York; Roll: 1066; Page: 9B; Enumeration District: 0511; FHL microfilm: 1241066. (Ancestry.com)

Year: 1920; Census Place: Brooklyn Assembly District 20, Kings, New York; Roll: T625_1177; Page: 11A; Enumeration District: 1305; Image: 482. (Ancestry.com)

History of Riga. n.d. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Riga (accessed January 26, 2017).

New York State Archives; Albany, New York; State Population Census Schedules, 1925; Election District: 27; Assembly District: 20; City: Brooklyn; County: Kings; Page: 33. (Ancestry.com)

Year: 1945; Arrival: New York, New York; Microfilm Serial: T715, 1897-1957; Microfilm Roll: Roll 6905; Line: 29; Page Number: 130. (Ancestry.com)

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 and 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).