Two Swedish Women

Divided Back, Real Photo Postcard, circa 1907 – 1910. Photographer:  Fred A. Grinolds. CYKO stamp box.

Price:  $15.00

“These two girls came 3 miles last Sunday to have me take their picture they are both Swedes and are engaged to be married soon they cant talk very good English yet write me if you are coming to Cal”

I think these ladies may be sisters, there seems to be a definite resemblance. Don’t you love the hats? In particular, I love the long cloak of the woman on our left, with that double row of decorative buttons. Too bad the photographer didn’t include their names in the above note. But still, we appreciate the fact that he did write a description, and we appreciate the sense of occasion  it would have been for the women, Swedish immigrants, both engaged to be married.

As for the photographer, he was Fred Albert Grinolds, born in Oil City, Pennsylvania, March 2, 1879, mother’s maiden name Swartz. Fred must not have been in the photography business for very long:  November 15, 1911, he married Elba Vera Lovelass in Marshfield, Coos County, Oregon, his occupation given as “ratchet setter” (at a sawmill). By the 1918 WWI Draft Registration, he was working as a millwright at the Old Dominion Company (a copper mining operation) in Globe, Arizona. Nothing was found for him online under the photographer heading, but it sounds like this would have been in California, before he got married. He and Edna had two daughters, Edna and Bertha. Below is Fred’s obit found in The Modesto Bee, August 22, 1960:

Sources:  “California Death Index, 1940-1997,” database, FamilySearch ( : 26 November 2014), Fred A Grinolds, 21 Aug 1960; Department of Public Health Services, Sacramento.

Year: 1910; Census Place: Newport, Coos, Oregon; Roll: T624_1280; Page: 10B; Enumeration District: 0052; FHL microfilm: 1375293.

Registration State: Arizona; Registration County: Gila County. U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918.

“Fred A. Grinolds.” The Modesto Bee, August 22, 1960. Monday, p. 10. (

Xmas 1912

Xmas 1912 pc1Xmas 1912 pc2

“Xmas 1912 – Very best wishes for a happy and prosperous New Year.”

What doesn’t jive with this postcard? This is an Undivided Back card, the era for which ran officially from December 24, 1901 to March 1, 1907, as created in changes in U.S. postal law. So the photo of the pretty lady wearing eyeglasses (come to think of it, the glasses are not that common in old photos) would have been taken prior to March 1, 1907, perhaps from 1902 through 1906, if not a little earlier than ’02, allowing for the fact that the photo might have been one that she’d had taken a couple of years prior…..The back postcard header shows a beautifully delicate design from an unknown publisher.

After just posting this one, I got to wondering when and how the term “Xmas” came to be. Having, like many, always associated it with commercialism, I was surprised to find out that “Xmas” has been around since the mid-1500s:  “X” (the Greek letter “chi”) is the first letter in the Greek word Χριστός, which translates to English as “Christ.” And “mas” is the Old English word for mass. (Cool!)

Undivided Back postcard, used with writing. Photo circa 1900 – 1906. Card dated Christmas, 1912.

Price:  $2.00

Source:  “What Is the X in Xmas?”, December 22, 2014. Web accessed December 19, 2015.

Seven Women In Alaska

Seven Women In Alaska pc1Seven Women In Alaska pc2

A blurry but interesting Real Photo Postcard that was marked  “Alaska”  on the little sticker on the plastic sleeve, showing a group of seven smiling ladies posing in front of what might be a wooden train depot or station of some type. That looks like a set of tracks on our right. All the ladies wear hats (nothing unusual) but three of the hats have an upright feather in the hatband. It looks like it’s summer or spring; they are dressed for mild weather, and there’s a couple of umbrellas in the group. Their skirt hemlines vary slightly above or below the ankle, except for that one daring lady in the back with the hemline just below the knee! The AZO stamp box with all four triangles pointing upward, and the fact that it’s a divided back, places the date at about 1907 – 1918.

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

Price:  $3.00

Mother And Son RPPC

Mother And Son RPPC pc1Mother And Son RPPC pc2

Divided back, unused, Real Photo Postcard. PMC stamp box showing diamonds in all four corners. Circa 1907.

Price:  $15.00

Real Photo Postcard (RPPC) showing a studio portrait of a beautiful young mother and her adorable, approximately three year old son. They are both fashionably attired. The little boy, who has blond curls, wears a sailor suit, belted romper-type outfit with a large bow. The mother wears a dress, or it may be a matching skirt and blouse, in a dark material with a squarish neckline, trimmed in matching braid, and a white insert with a double row of dark braid on the high-necked collar. The bodice shows a double row of buttons which continue onto the skirt and flare out to the sides. The woman wears a chain with a round pendant, and a bracelet over the right sleeve of her long sleeved blouse, but one of the most striking things about her ensemble is the Breton style hat. The description found on the excellent Shappos blog under types of hats for the Breton or Bretone is a “women’s hat with ample round crown and brim turned up all around.”

This postcard’s date is estimated at 1907. The stamp box shows PMC with diamonds at each corner, which is a design that is at least from 1907, according to the stamp box examples on the excellent website. There does not seem to be much known about the company that produced this type of “printing out” paper for Real Photo Postcards. shows six different PMC designs ranging from approximately pre-1907 to 1915, and shows a known year for the design we have here of 1907. You may have to take a closer look at the letters in the stamp box, as at first glance they may look like PMO.

Lastly, when viewing photos we sometimes have strong impressions about a person’s nationality (and wonder a little about the political correctness of saying someone “looks” like they are from a certain country) but for me I’m thinking immediately of Ireland when looking at this woman’s photo.


Woman Posing With Chair

Loretta Young Lookalike pc1Loretta Young Lookalike pc2

Beautiful young woman posing next to beautiful ornately carved wooden chair. The lace collar of her dress is heavenly. Also, note the knight’s helmet carved in the top of the chair. This postcard was found in St. Joe, Michigan while on a recent vacation. The woman reminds both Mom and I of Loretta Young.

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

Price:  $12.00