Saturday, July 30, 2011

Monaco Wedding Stamps

This postcard has a night view of the Prince's Palace in the Principality of Monaco. The stamp in the upper right corner is not an actual stamp. It is an image of the stamp printed as part of the postcard design. The stamp commemorates the wedding of Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier of Monaco on April 19, 1956. Grace Kelly was an American movie star.

For a couple of years when I was young, I both collected stamps and was fascinated with dime stores. One Saturday my father took me to a dime store in a neighboring town. Dime stores sold packages of stamps for collectors, so of course I had to look at the stamps. That is where I bought the stamps of the Monaco royal wedding. I seem to remember I was already aware of the wedding. Maybe I saw it on TV, or maybe it was because my Girl Scout troop was making scrapbooks of movie stars that year.

Below are the real stamps from my old stamp collection.

And here is a video with news coverage of the wedding:

I am participating in Sunday Stamps at Viridian's Postcard Blog

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Century of Progress Photos

The postcard above shows the "world's largest parking lot" at the Century of Progress Exposition (Chicago World's Fair) held in Chicago in 1933 and 1934.

The snapshot below has a 1934 Century of Progress border. I like to think that the women posed with the car were on the way to the fair and might have parked in the lot shown on the postcard. Although the photo has a Century of Progress border, I don't know if it actually represents a trip to the fair. I wish I knew whether the photos with this border were all connected with the fair.

The photo of the women does have a list of names on the back. Two of the names--Vera Jasmund and Hermina Wulf--are uncommon, and I was able to find the names on the 1930 census for Chicago. They were born about 1912 and 1911, which would make them in their early twenties in 1934.

The rest of my photos are from a different source. They have an 1833 - 1933 Century of Progress border. There is no information on the backs. The first photo shows two women seated at an outdoor table. The sign above the woman on the left says Restaurant Leopold. Restaurant Leopold was in the Belgian Village.

The next photo shows the women looking at the replica of Abraham Lincoln's birthplace.

The last photo is a view of the Fort Dearborn replica. Fort Dearborn was an important fort in Chicago's history.

The Century of Progress was actually a colorful place, as shown in this 1934 Chicago World's Fair in Technicolor video.

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Monday, July 25, 2011

Camp Lincoln for Boys

This postcard shows the waterfront at Camp Lincoln for Boys which is located on Lake Hubert, near Brainerd. The card was used in 1939, but the message is unrelated to the camp. The back of the postcard has this description:
Lake Hubert, 13 miles from Brainerd, is an ideal camp location with a marvelous sandy swimming beach. Big towering pines add beauty and atmosphere.
The history of Camp Lincoln goes back to 1909 when the camp was established as the Blake Camp. In 1923, the camp was purchased by a new owner and renamed Camp Lincoln. The camps 100-year anniversary was celebrated in 2009.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Picture Postcard Centenary 1894-1994

This postcard is one of a series showing British stamps that commemorate the Centenary of Picture Postcards. There are some earlier postcards with printed stamps, but 1894 is the date when adhesive stamps were first allowed on postcards. The Picture Postcards 1894-1994series of stamps was issued by Royal Mail on 12 April 1994.

The comic illustrations on the stamps are typical of the British "saucy seaside postcard." These are relatively tame compared to many of the more vulgar and tacky seaside postcards.

This series of stamp cards consists of "postcards about stamps about postcards." This card is my favorite from the series because it shows a man writing postcards. It goes a step further, being a "postcard about a stamp about a postcard about postcards."

I am participating in Sunday Stamps at Viridian's Postcard Blog

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Apollo and Shuttle Space Programs

My first postcard shows the astronaut crew of Apollo 7 (L-R):
  • Walter Cunningham, Lunar Module Pilot
  • Walter M. Schirra, Jr., Commander
  • Donn F. Eisele, Command Module Pilot
These three astronauts never flew again, possibly due to tension between them and Mission Control. As of 2011, Cunningham is the only surviving member of the crew. Eisele died in 1987 and Schirra in 2007.

Apollo 7 was an 11-day Earth-orbital mission launched on October 11, 1968. It was the first manned mission in the Apollo space program, and the first manned U. S. space flight after a cabin fire during a launch pad test in 1967 killed the crew of what was to have been the first manned Apollo mission. Apollo 7 was the first U.S. three man mission, the first flight of the Apollo space suits, and the first live national TV from space during a manned space flight.

My second postcard shows a picture of mission specialist Bruce McCandless taken from the shuttle Challenger. The first untethered spacewalk was made by McCandless utilizing the Manned Maneuvering Unit on February 7, 1984, during Challenger mission STS-41-B .

Space Shuttle Challenger was NASA's second Space Shuttle orbiter to be put into service, Columbia having been the first. Its first flight was on April 4, 1983. It completed nine missions before breaking apart 73 seconds after the launch of its tenth mission, STS-51-L on January 28, 1986. The accident resulted in the death of all seven crew members and led to a two-and-a-half year grounding of the shuttle fleet. Shuttle missions resumed in 1988 with the launch of the third Space Shuttle Discovery. Challenger itself was replaced by the Space Shuttle Endeavour, which first launched in 1992. Endeavour was constructed from spare parts originally meant for Challenger and the other shuttles in the fleet.

Atlantis was NASA's fourth space shuttle. It lifted off on its maiden voyage on Oct. 3, 1985. The final flight of the shuttle program, STS-135, was a 13-day mission to the International Space Station. It began when space shuttle Atlantis was launched July 8, 2011. Atlantis carried a crew of four and the Raffaello multipurpose logistics module containing supplies and spare parts for the space station. The astronauts were Commander Chris Ferguson, Pilot Doug Hurley, and Mission Specialists Sandy Magnus and Rex Walheim. The shuttle returned and landed back at Kennedy Space Center, Florida on Thursday July 21, 2011 at 5:57 a.m. EDT, after 200 orbits around Earth.

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Monday, July 18, 2011

New Shubert Theatre - Minneapolis, Minn.

I chose to show this postcard of the Minneapolis Shubert Theatre because of its beautiful handwriting and its date. This postcard was in the mail exactly 100 years ago. It was written on July 16, 1911 and postmarked on July 17, 1911. It was sent from Minneapolis to "Brother" in Pennock, Minnesota. It also has an interesting message mentioning "postals," which is what postcards were often called.
Minneapolis 7/16/11
Dear Brother:
Spose you are working hard every day. tell Victor I will send him a postal one evening this week. we just came home from Minnehaha. Send us a postal.

The Shubert Theatre has had an interesting history. After a move and a slow renovation, it is scheduled to have a Grand Opening in September 2011 as the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts. It was formerly located at 22 7th Street North. It is currently located at 516 Hennepin Avenue. Here is a historic profile from Minneapolis Heritage Preservation:
Built in 1910 to accommodate The Shubert Theatrical Company of New York, the Shubert Theater is considered the oldest legitimate theater in Minneapolis. Initially located on 7th Street, the theater’s main façade is a Beaux-Arts design composed of glazed terracotta with a granite base. The theater’s auditorium, built without center aisles on all three levels of seating, has superb sight lines for viewing the stage and superior acoustics. However, drastic alterations in 1957 stripped the auditorium walls of decorative molder plaster trim which repeated the ionic order of the exterior façade thus preventing the interior from being historically designated. The Shubert Theater brought Broadway to Minneapolis in 1910, but has served several functions since. From 1915 to 1934, the theater operated as a stock company house with actors from New York, then converted into a primarily vaudeville and burlesque showplace. For a brief period in the 1950s, it was owned by the Minneapolis Evangelical Association, but was soon re-opened as the Academy, a theater exclusively for motion pictures. The Shubert closed in 1982 and sat vacant on 7th Street, the block later developed as Block E. Demolition of the historic theater was considered an option until the non-profit organization, Artspace Projects Inc., proposed to re-locate the 2,900-ton a quarter-mile to Hennepin Avenue for an estimated cost of $4 million.
A description and pictures of moving the Shubert in 1999 is here. Below is a time lapse video of the Shubert building moving:

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Canadian & Swedish Bird Stamps - Capex '78

This postcard was issued in 1978 by the Swedish Postal Service to promote the CAPEX '78 International Stamp Exhibition in Canada. CAPEX stands for CAnadian Philatelic EXhibition. CAPEX '78 commemorated the centennial of Canada's entry into the Universal Postal Union.

At first, I thought that the Canadian and Swedish stamps pictured on this postcard looked like a joint issue showing the same bird. However, not only the birds, but also the issue dates, are different. The Canadian stamp shows Canadian Geese, while the Swedish stamp shows swans.

The back of this postcard gives the issue date for the Canadian stamp as 30 October 1963 and the issue date for the Swedish stamp as 5 September 1968. Although there is not a complete catalog of Swedish stamps online, the information I found does not support that issue date for the Swedish stamp. On a listing of Swedish bird stamps, this swan design was issued in 1942 and 1953. The 1953 issue is a booklet pair with one unperforated side like the picture on the postcard. Also a listing of 1968 Swedish stamps does not show this swan stamp.

For an illustrated listing of bird stamps by country, see the Birds of the World on Postage Stamps website.

I am participating in Sunday Stamps at Viridian's Postcard Blog

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Hello Pard!

This postcard is a studio photo of four friends or "pards" pretending to be hard drinking outlaws. It has a postmark from Spokane, Washington, but there is no year date on the card. The card has a typical postcard message beginning "Dear friend why don't you write once in a while. I rote one before and I did not get no answer." It was probably sent by one of the men in the photo but is unsigned.

The use of a 2-cent stamps suggests that it might have been mailed during World War I, when postcard postage rates were temporarily raised from 1-cent. However, it may have been sent earlier, because a newer stamp was issued in 1912.

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Monday, July 11, 2011

Pictorial Quick Mileage Map - Minnesota

click to enlarge

This postcard has a Pictorial Quick Mileage Map of Minnesota by the Langwith Map Co. of Minneapolis, Minnesota. I'm sure that the original must have been much larger. It is hard to see the details on the map unless it is enlarged. I couldn't find any information on the Langwith Map Co., but the Minnesota Historical Society website has a Langwith's Pictorial Map of Minnesota from the 1930s here, and there are listings on the web for Langwith road maps for Minnesota and other states.

The map shows highways and mileages, and has comical figures scattered around the state. Up by the Canadian border, Uncle Sam is reaching across the border to shake hands with "John." In the center of the map near Brainerd there is a Paul Bunyan figure with a "Paul Bunyan Celebration" label (This celebration appears to have first occurred in 1936). Oddly, there are also labels there for Camp Lincoln and Camp Hubert which are summer camps for boys and girls. A bit south of there is "Father Hennepin Discovers the New Deal Tax." Farther north is "Me Heap Big Chief Rain-In-Puss Ugh!" A Minneapolis miller says "Oh Boy! Am I Gonna Make Myself Some Dough?" while St. Paul says "Heh! Heh! He's Gotta Make It - But I've Already Got The Capital!"

The mapmaker managed to fit in Omaha, Milwaukee, and Chicago near the bottom of the map. These are south of Minnesota but not very close!

This postcard was mailed from Bemidji in 1941 with the message "Boy! you should see all the beautiful women!"

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Patriotic U. S. Postage Stamps

The two-cent "Birth of Liberty" stamp is one of three stamps issued on April 4, 1925 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the battles of Lexington and Concord, the first conflicts of the American Revolutionary War.

The 5-dollar "Head of Freedom Statue" stamp was issued on March 20, 1923 as part of a definitive series. It shows the head of the sculpture atop the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. The Statue of Freedom was erected on December 2, 1863, in the midst of the Civil War. This stamp is incorrectly labeled "America."

The four-cent stamp with the George Washington quote was issued in 1960. The "American Credo Series" of 1960-1961 was issued to underscore the ideals upon which the nation stands. The series features quotations from six American patriots: George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Frances Scott Key, Abraham Lincoln, and Patrick Henry.

These stamps are shown on postcards that are part of a series of eighteen postcards issued during the 1976 American Bicentennial. The postcards were issued to promote Oklahoma's Bicentennial Stamp Exhibition. The following stamps were illustrated on the eighteen postcards:
  1. The Birth of Liberty - 1926 2¢ stamp commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Lexington-Concord
  2. The Minute Man - 1926 ¢¢ stamp commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Lexington-Concord
  3. Bennington Flag 1777 - 1968 6¢ stamp, first American flag made with stars and stripes
  4. The Liberty Bell - 1926 2¢ stamp commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence
  5. Benjamin Franklin - 1956 3¢ stamp commemorating 250th anniversary of his birth
  6. Ft. Moultrie Flag 1776 - 1968 6¢ stamp, flag flown during defense of fort on Sullivan's Island off Charleston, S.C.
  7. The Marquis de Lafayette - 1952 3¢ stamp commemorating 1777 arrival of Lafayette in America
  8. The Battle of Yorktown - 1931 2¢ stamp commemorating the 150th anniversary of the surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown
  9. Betsy Ross - 1952 3¢ stamp commemorating the 200th anniversary of the birth of Betsy Ross
  10. Alexander Hamilton - 1957 3¢ stamp commemorating 200th anniversary of the birth of Alexander Hamilton
  11. First Stars and Stripes 1777 - 1968 6¢ stamp, flag design adopted by Congress in 1777
  12. The Washington Credo - 1960 4¢ stamp with words spoken by Washington in his farewell address
  13. The Burgoyne Campaign - 1927 2¢ stamp commemorating the surrender of Gen. Burgoyne in 1777
  14. Grand Union Flag 1776 - 1968 6¢ stamp, flag was the first "Stars and Stripes" displayed in battle
  15. Thomas Jefferson - 1904 2¢ stamp in Louisiana Purchase Exposition commemorative series
  16. America - 1923 5¢ stamp shows the Head of Freedom on the statue on the Capitol Dome
  17. U.S. Postage Stamp Centenary - 1947 3¢ stamp commemorating 100 years of Postal Service. Washington (the First President) and Franklin (the First Postmaster General) were the first persons to be honored on U.S. stamps.
  18. American Revolution Bicentennial - 1971 8¢ stamp showing the official emblem of the Bicentennial Commission designed by Chermayeff & Geismar.

I am participating in Sunday Stamps at Viridian's Postcard Blog

Friday, July 8, 2011

Girls, Girls, Come Out to Play

The words on this postcard invite girls to come out to play in the moonshine:
Girls, girls, come out to play
The moon doth shine as bright as day.
Come with a whoop or come with a call,
Come with a good will, or come not at all.
This is based on an old nursery rhyme that is actually about both girls and boys coming out to play:
Girls and boys, are come out to play,
The moon doth shine as bright as day;
Leave your supper, and leave your sleep,
And come with your playfellows into the street.
Come with a whoop, come with a call,
Come with a good will or not at all.
Up the ladder and down the wall,
A halfpenny roll will serve us all.
You find milk, and I'll find flour,
And we'll have a pudding in half an hour
According to the article in Wikipedia, this verse may date back to the time when children were expected to work during the daylight hours, and play was reserved for late in the evening. At least part of the verse is known to have been published in the 1700s.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Chicago Union Station During World War II

The postcards above show the USO Lounge and Servicemen's Canteen in Chicago Union Station. The USO (United Service Organizations) was incorporated in 1941, joining together six service agencies. The USO in Union Station opened on May 20, 1942.

The descriptions on the postcards are about the station's facilities for servicemen and the patriotic displays in the station concourse:

USO Lounge and Servicemen's Canteen

Adjoining the Lounge is the Servicemen's Canteen provided by the Chicago Union Station Co9mpany for the four railroads serving this busy terminal: Pennsylvania Railroad, Burlington Route, The Milwaukee Road, and Alton Railroad. Here food is sold at nickel prices to meet the service man's pay. Fred Harvey provides the service.

World's Largest Patriotic Display

Chicago Union Station houses the largest patriotic display ever built, an endless swarm of 4,500 actual scale model airplanes with wing spreads up to 5 feet, symbolizing the thousands of airplanes our government is building to win the war. 12 mammoth mural paintings are part of this historic display which was built by the Chicago building Trades Council to help in the sale of War Bonds and Stamps. 50,000 travelers see this inspiring panorama every day.
Sepia Saturday 82 has a photo from the Library of Congress of the Chicago Union Station concourse taken by Jack Delano in 1943. Below are some more photos of Union Station by Jack Delano taken in 1943. The first one shows the concourse with signs pointing to trains and the USO Lounge. The second shows some of the flags on display there, and the third one shows the model planes decorating the ceiling.

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Bowlin's Running Indian Sign

Since the back of this postcard mentions the "Trading Post at N. Y. World's Fair 1964-65," this postcard is probably from the mid-1960s. Bowlin's is still in business, and the website for Bowlin's Running Indian Store near Alamogordo, New Mexico shows the Running Indian. There are some photos on flickr of almost identical Running Indian Signs.

I'm participating in Signs, Signs

Monday, July 4, 2011

American Bicentennial - Minneapolis & St. Paul

The 1976 skyline view of St. Paul and aerial view of Minneapolis depict the changes of 200 years since the founding of America in 1776.

Friday, July 1, 2011

A Century of Progress - Modern Woodmen of America

These two postcards show the exhibits of the Modern Woodmen of America at the Century of Progress International Exposition held in Chicago in 1933 and 1934. The exhibit was in the Social Science Hall on Northerly Island. The first postcard is from 1933, and the second is from 1934.

When I think of "modern woodmen," I think of lumberjack demonstrations and contests. However, Modern Woodmen of America is actually a fraternal benefit society that has been around for more than a hundred years. Here is a description of Modern Woodmen from
No need to pitch a tent to have Modern Woodmen in your camp. One of the largest fraternal benefit societies in the US, Modern Woodmen provides annuities, life insurance, and other financial savings products to more than 750,000 members through some 1,500 agents. The group, founded in 1883, is organized into "camps" (or chapters) that provide social, recreational, and service -- as well as financial -- benefits to members. Founder Joseph Cullen Root chose the society's name to compare pioneering woodmen clearing forests to men using life insurance to remove the financial burdens their families could face upon their deaths.
Modern Woodmen drill teams, known as Foresters, were popular from the 1890s to the 1930s. Each group had a different style and color of uniform. The last known “Rainbow Parade” was held on Michigan Boulevard in Chicago and halted traffic for more than two hours.

In the early 1900s, tuberculosis was the leading cause of death. Colorado's climate was favorable for treating the disease, and a number of TB sanatoriums were established there. Modern Woodmen opened a well-known sanatorium in Colorado Springs in 1907 where more than 12,000 patients were treated for 38 years. This video promoting their sanatorium was produced by the Modern Woodmen of America in 1933.

This post also includes information from Wikipedia.

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