We are always buying postcards and photos from before 1950 - email us at circa1910@tampabay.rr.com.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Patriotic THANKSGIVING Postcards

While Thanksgiving postcard designs can be outdone by many Santa Claus Christmas and dressed Rabbit  Easter postcards, there are some exceptional Thanksgiving postcards worth adding to a holiday collection.  We begin this post with a Puritan Relief Ship image by John Winsch publishers, one of a series of Thanksgiving postcards tracing U.S. history through colorful images.  Below that postcard are two more from the same series.  Rich embossing, fancy Winsch lettering, and gold touches make these postcards extra nice.  Most history records mark the Thanksgiving Autumn dinner shared by Plymouth colonists and the Wampanoag Indians in 1621 as our earliest Thanksgiving celebration.

Patriotic Thanksgiving postcards can earn that name by adding red, white and blue decorations to the designs.  After all, Thanksgiving is a uniquely American holiday!


The handsome turkey above wears a star spangled top hat and stands out against a bright red background.  We love fantasy images from the turn of the century with "modern" inventions and modes of transportation. Here is one of our favorite Thanksgiving turkey images with the birds floating along in a dirigible basket, American flags flying and red, white and blue straps around their vehicle.  

These sturdy boys carry a big Thanksgiving feast basket and hold flags...love their jaunty caps! Rich embossing adds to the charm of all the postcards in this post. 

Below, pilgrims appear in a winter scene framed by a gold Good Luck turkey wishbone, all laid out on a red, white & blue background decorated with golden stars.   

We close this post with some Thanksgiving postcards featuring Uncle Sam, symbol of the country and very popular with postcard collectors.  It just seems natural to find him on images of our national holiday.  Although there were Thanksgiving festivities in various towns and states around the country, it wasn't until 1863 that President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed Thanksgiving a national holiday to be celebrated each November.

PRICE ESTIMATES:  Patriotic Thanksgiving postcards are generally more expensive than simpler images of turkeys, harvest fruits and vegetables.    Of course, any image that includes people will be harder to find, and therefore more valuable, than images that don't.  The fine Winsch series at the top of the post can be found between $12 - $25 each.  Uncle Sam cards range from about $10 - $20,  depending on rarity.  Turkey fantasies, such as the blimp image here, vary widely in price.  Sometimes turkeys in automobiles, airplanes or other vehicles can be found very reasonably...if you find a bargain, snap it up!   These prices are for postcards in EXCELLENT condition, and they are only estimates.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

ART Imitates LIFE Postcards of RPPC Models

Collecting antique postcards invites us into a world of puzzles.  The pirated designs from popular artists like Ellen Clapsaddle, Frances Brundage, Marie Flatscher and Samuel Schmucker is just one oddity.  Stolen designs most often show up on no-name publisher postcards, in slightly blurry-edged copies, smaller motifs, and in flat or pared-down versions of the originals.  We previously offered a post on linen postcards that were generic images of streams, woods or waterfalls later imprinted with the name of the buyer's location. Also, although we have not written a post about it, many early printed postcards had details like the moon, birds, automobiles drawn into the original photo image.  In this post, we address the scarcer habit of cashing in on the success of certain real photo postcard models by incorporating their images into artwork for other postcards.  Here are two we have noticed.

  We begin with three real photo postcards of a very popular young girl - then and now - with an especially lovely face and a gentlle expression.  One opens our post and there are two below.  You may recognize her - postcards of her have gone up sharply in price until they sometimes sell for $50 or more.  There are some passionate collectors of this girl!  

And here she is rendered by an artist on a pretty embossed Christmas postcard without a publisher designation:

You may also recognize this next  pretty young woman who usually appears with her lips parted - her image graces so many real photo postcards that she really should have a category all her own:

And here is a drawing of her on a bright embossed Valentine's postcard from International Art Publishers.  We have seen this series attributed to Ellen Clapsaddle, but the designs are unsigned.

Finally, here is a real photo postcard of the two very popular models together:

We have not yet seen an artistic interpretation of them together.  Perhaps one will appear in future.  If so, we'll let you know.

   Do you have a favorite postcard-related puzzle?  We'd love to hear about it if you do! 

PRICE ESTIMATESPrices for these real photo postcards are highest, at the moment, for unusual poses of the little girl with light hair.  Her postcards range from about $10 to $50 or more.  Real photo postcards of the young woman range from about $8 - $15.  The two artistic renderings of their image were purchased for $8 and $10. These estimates are for postcards in EXCELLENT condition, and they are only estimates.