Friday, September 30, 2011

John Is Thrilled

Here he is - excited about riding the pony.

Here is John again - excited about relaxing in the sun.

And here he is, excited about riding his tricycle.

The truth is that John really was very enthusiastic about many things. It just doesn't show in these pictures. I think it's fair to say that he probably didn't like to pose for pictures. John Korinek, born in 1926, was my father-in-law.  Here's a picture of him getting excited about a new pair of glasses he got in 2003.

And since Tracy asked, I have added this wedding photo too. There's definitely a smile this time.

If it's unbridled enthusiasm you're after, head on over to Sepia Saturday.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Hood's Sarsaparilla Saved My Life

If you read the back of this 1884 trade card, you can discover how Hood's cures what ails you, and how it saved the life of J.H. Martin of Delight, Kansas. Then you can head on over to G.L. Swift & Son in Marathon, New York to buy 100 doses for a dollar.

George Lucien Swift was the first grocer and a prominent businessman in Marathon, New York until his death in 1900. After visiting his daughter in New York City in the summer of 1900, he became ill with some ailment that sarsaparilla could not cure. His health declined as the year progressed. Although he was able to get up for Thanksgiving dinner, he died a few weeks later.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

San Francisco's Chinatown

Pamela Gerard of Cappuccino and Art Journal kindly sent me this San Francisco postcard folder. There are too many views to show all of them, but here are some of the highlights.

Here's a link to the Tattered and Lost post mentioned in the comments below. I also saw a very nice old San Francisco Chinatown card recently at Postcard Roundup.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Snowdon Railway

Every now and then when I'm reading other blogs I'm inspired to dig up a related card from my collection. In this case I was reading about Mt. Snowdon in North Wales on Sheila's blog, A Postcard A Day. I like her post because it not only tells about Mt. Snowdon, but also has a message from the sender recounting the experience of hiking to the top. Sheila also mentions that while many people seem determined to hike the summit, a train was  built in the 19th century. Here's that train.

There is a lot more information on the official railway website, although I couldn't seem to find information on how long the journey takes. I would probably want to hike up and take the train down, but the site warns that there is not always space available for one-way trips down.

Unfortunately, no message on the back.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Hotel Gregorian to the Sanitarium

In April 1906, The Montreal Gazette described the Hotel Gregorian as being among those 'realizing the highest ideals of the best homes with an atmosphere of refinement and well ordered ease'. The hotel is still there and is now operated as the Comfort Inn Manhattan Hotel.

Here's the back of the card.

The message on the card addressed to Mrs. Louise Perry at Dr. Sahler's Sanitarium reads:

I expect to be at the Sanitarium next Sunday and shall be so glad to see you. Please tell Myra Powers I am coming
cordially  E. Hathaway

The story of Dr. Sahler's Sanitarium is probably more interesting than the postcard itself. Dr. Sahler, who was educated at Columbia, was also an expert in the occult. An advertisement in a 1901 edition of the Metaphysical Magazine: a monthly review of the occult sciences, included this clip on the sanitarium:

Dr. Sahler also received a glowing assessment in the Phrenological Journal and Science of Health, volume 109, 1900. Phrenology, according to Wikipedia, "is a pseudoscience primarily focused on measurements of the human skull, based on the concept that the brain is the organ of the mind, and that certain brain areas have localized, specific functions or modules." Phrenologists would measure the skull and feel the bumps in the skull to assess personality traits.

Dr. Sahler also worked with mediums and auras, as reported in the Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research (1909). Here's an excerpt:

I only wish that Louise Perry could tell us about her experiences at the Sanitarium.

Friday, September 23, 2011

I'm Only Sleeping

The theme for Sepia Saturday this week is based on a photo of  sleeping man. I found no photos of sleeping men, but I did find a picture of my mother taking a poolside nap circa 1959.

I also found a beautiful illustration in a book of mine from 1840, showing the sleeping Chriemhilt (also known as Kriemhild) from the Nibelungenlied. This book was published with the Middle High German, so the spelling is different. The Nibelungenlied is an epic poem recounting the life of Siegfried the dragon slayer, his eventual murder, and his wife Kriemhild's revenge. The Nibelungenlied also served as the source material for Richard Wagner's opera, The Ring of the Nibelung.

The illustration was drawn by Julius Huebner and rendered as a woodcut by F. Unzelmann. The illustrations in this special celebration edition, are all very intricate and beautiful. I will feature more of them in the near future.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

More San Francisco Flower Vendors

I posted some 1910-1920 postcards of flower vendors in San Francisco a few days ago. These are a bit later - 1930s and 40s, but the flower vendors are still going strong.

By the way, how do you spell the word -vendor or vender? I have heard that vender is the American spelling and vendor is the British spelling, but I hardly ever see it spelled with 'er'  here in the United States.

Here are the backs of the cards in the same order.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Public Places in Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux is known for its wine, but the downtown is also on World Heritage list.  This beautiful public garden still exists as a place of tranquility when you want to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. The old photos of the garden have a certain air of romance and mystery.

You can still buy fresh produce at the Marché des Capucins, although it looks a lot more modern today.

Here are the backs of the postcards in the same order.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Kyoto Station - Japan

This card shows the third incarnation of Kyoto Station. The first station was built in 1889 and replaced by a newer station 1n 1914. That station burned down in 1950 and was replaced by this one in 1952.

The current Kyoto Station doesn't look a bit like this one. It was built in 1997 and includes a shopping mall, hotel, and movie theater. It is one of Japan's largest buildings. Click here to see what it looks like now.

Here's the back of the card.

Monday, September 19, 2011

San Francisco Flower Vendors

After reading about Barry the San Francisco Florist at Tattered and Lost Vernacular Photography, I had to look through my San Francisco flower vendor cards. You don't see flower vendors on the streets in San Francisco like you used to.

Here are the backs of the cards. The first one was written in 1923.
The message reads:

San Francisco - Feb. 1 - 23
Arrived yesterday A.M. with my friend and shall be here over the week-end. Mildred will come over to me tomorrow + with me two nights. Mr. Hayes telephoned me ate this afternoon from our house + said they were suffering with the extreme cold temperature down to 28 degrees and snow on all the surrounding mountains. So cold then the house wasn't comfortable.

No message on the second card.

Friday, September 16, 2011

All Aboard!

You can board this train, but only if you weigh less than 50 pounds and can fit into a Speed Racer wagon. Oh, but wait...the cars seem to be occupied by wild animals in cages.

This is a children's parade from Jarvis School in Binghamton, New York's First Ward in the late 1920s or early 1930s. Although I can't be certain, I think this is John Korinek, my father-in-law, below.

The kids have constructed cages for each wagon to hold various wild animals. A giraffe helps them to pull the train.

Here are some additional close-ups.

Be sure to check out Sepia Saturday for more old pictures and great stories.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Atlantic City, New Jersey

Last chance to get out and enjoy the shore before summer ends.  Back in 1914, there were plenty of people enjoying the sand and sun at Atlantic City. Many of them were overdressed for the beach, at least by today's standards, but those straw hats and ties look so elegant. I'd like to say no thanks to wool bathing suits though.

The message to Howard R. Spindler reads:

We got away at last + are here for a week. It is delightful and cool here. Will be home on the 16th Jessie

Howard was born on March 1, 1893 and registered for the World War I draft in 1917/18, but I don't know if he fought in the war or not.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Hotel Times Square

I guess that Hotel Times Square has a better ring to it than Hotel Claman, but it's not nearly as distinctive. I appreciate that the sender of this card marked the room where he stayed though.

This was a new hotel when the sender stayed here in 1925, but years later it became a welfare hotel. In 1922, The New York Times reported that the hotel was to be built at a cost of $1,500,000 and would provide accommodations for 'men only' for a proposed price of $9-$14 per week.  It is currently listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is rented as efficiency apartments, but for a lot more than $9-$14 per week.

I wonder if the recipient of the card, Frank Yates, was the famous sculler from Cornell.

The message reads:
Hello Dick, Am spending a couple of Red Hot weeks down here making some water grant surveys. made one at Poughkeepsie last week + have some on L. I this week. took a boat trip down to Atlantic Highlands N.J. today trying to cool off but didn't have any chills on the water. This is the hotel where I am staying + have fine accommodations. Regards to the boys HSB (?)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Broadway Central Hotel

Here it is - the only medium-priced hotel on Broadway. Only $1.00 per night for the European Plan and $2.50 per night for the American Plan. What's the difference? Well, the European Plan includes accommodations only, and the American Plan includes three meals per day. I'll take the European Plan, thank you. It's hard to imagine having enough time to explore the city if you always have to be back at the hotel for lunch and dinner.

This hotel, located at 673 Broadway, was originally known as the Grand Central Hotel. With 630 rooms, it was considered huge at the time. The Broadway Central, designed by Henry Engelbert, was opened in 1870.  An enormous sum was spent on luxurious furniture, carpets, and furnishings.

Over the years, the flavor of the hotel changed. In the 1950s, Bill Haley and the Comets played there nightly, and by the 1970s it had become a welfare hotel, charging $5 per night. By then, the building, plagued with rats, prostitutes, and garbage, was considered a public nuisance.  Illegal alterations probably led to the 1973 collapse of the hotel, which killed four residents. Check out Tom Miller's blog for more information on the history of the hotel.

Sadly, this postcard was never sent. I love reading the messages on these old cards, especially if they say what they did during the day and mark the window of the room they stayed in. No such luck this time.


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