Thursday, November 21, 2013


A few real photo postcards of bands.  That's because I just realized I have absolutely zero cards on the topic of Thanksgiving!  So, enjoy a favorite topic instead!

(And have a great Thanksgiving anyway!)

Friday, November 8, 2013

Boring Restaurant

What's for dinner tonight?  How about some Moo Goo Gai Pan at the China Lane Restaurant, East Greenwich, RI.

I hope you don't mind the lack of decor.  Formica, Venetian blinds, and fake flowers near the cash register.  At least there's a jukebox in the corner!

Friday, November 1, 2013

The Mill in Millinocket

The Great Northern Paper Company is the mill in the mill town of Millinocket.  When the local falls were identified as a great potential source of hydro power in the late 1800's, the idea was born to build the paper mill.  At the time, however, there was no town there, so the town was built along with the mill, and many of the workers stayed on to work in the mill itself once it went into operation in the 1900's.

Today's postcard is a fine portrait of the employees in the "Paper Machine Room" which was able to put out 500 feet of paper per minute, 152 inches wide.  The card conveys not only the state of the art of industrial revolution machinery, circa 1900, but the work uniforms of the day, the pride of the employees, and a few OSHA regulations here and there that far pre-date OSHA.

For more on the history of the mill and the origins of the town, see this short video:

Thursday, September 12, 2013


Where are we going for dinner tonight?  How about The Stockholm restaurant in Detroit?  Opened in 1939, this was a family restaurant featuring a Swedish Smorgasbord, a buffet table laden with the delicious food you see here.  The restaurant was one of Detroit's finest, and it was open until 1962.  Then, the place was sold, and a Playboy Club opened up in the same location.  Now?  There's a windowless brick building on the site that houses telecommunications equipment.

For more about Swedish cooking click here.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Last Pool Parties of Summer

Already it's starting to feel a little bit cooler here in Connecticut.  The summer weather will be over soon. But let's celebrate the last of the good weather at the pool parties at the Concord Resort and the Pines, both in the Catskills, circa 1960's!

Friday, August 30, 2013

L'shanah Tovah

Happy New Year, L'Shanah Tovah to all my Jewish friends.

This recent addition to my collection is one of the less commonly found Jewish New Year cards from the Williamsburg Press, around 1910-1920.  The newspaper salesman is standing before his display of papers, with headlines for the holidays.  The upper left hand corner says "L'Shanah Tovah," which means "Happy New Year."  The one to it's right says "Gut Yom Tov," which is a Yiddish phrase meaning the same thing.  My favorite is the lower left hand corner, which says "Tikeeyah Gadola,"  which is the phrase that is recited in the Synagogue, when the Shofar (Ram's Horn) is blown at the end of services, indicating the musical (?) blast should be long and loud.  More about shofars: and their primitive sound.

I do need help translating the text in the upper right hand corner.  Anyone out there speak Yiddish?

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Puttin' on the Ritz

A couple of other Ritz's, that is.

The top linen card, the Ritz of Muldraugh, Kentucky, is advertised as being "completely air-conditioned," and as having a "clean rest room."  It specialized in "Southern style cooking for tourists."

The Ritz Plaza on the bottom is located in Terre Haute, Indiana.  It was right next to the Howard Johnson's, and had RCA 21" televisions in all the rooms, not to mention wall-to-wall carpeting.

Two great examples aspiring, but not quite reaching the caliber of the real Ritz's, which were the hotels in the Ritz-Carlton chain starting way back in 1918!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

All Hail Caesar!

Once upon a time, Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas may have been a little bit alone on the Strip.  The place wasn't as built up, back when this postcard was produced just after 1966, when it opened.  But, did it really look that desolate back then?

I don't think so!  Look closely, and I think you'll agree.  The desert background, in both top and bottom shots, is exactly the same.  The crafty graphic designer cut out the two views of the hotel (old school, way before Photoshop, way before personal computers) and plopped them onto the same background.  It's especially obvious on the left hand side of the pictures, where you can see the same mountain rise in the distance, and the same road going off into the vanishing point with an asphalt area to its left!  Maybe this would be an acceptable practice for pictures on two different postcards, but for two pictures on the same postcard?  This graphic artist should have had his license revoked!!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Accordion Time

As the back of this card from the 50's-60's says, "Introduce your child now to the delight and satisfaction of the accordion."

Or, just give 'em an iPad.  The more things change, the more they stay the same (or is the other way around??)

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Sand Man

No message on the back.  Don't know where this postcard came from or was sold.  But, it's been in the 90's for 4 days straight, with two more forecasted, so I looked at my collection of "Bad Postcards" and selected this one.  How'd you like to join this family at the beach and help build the Sand Man.

Or, maybe check these pictures instead: Sand Castle Images

Thursday, July 11, 2013

A New Kitchen

I'm posting this card in honor of the groundbreaking of our new kitchen renovation at home.  After planning and saving for several years, it's time for the old floor, counters, cabinets, and appliances to go!!

Youngstown Pressed Steel Kitchens were the #1 brand of steel kitchen cabinets across America in the postwar period.  Don't leave this page until you've watched this video, that they made in 1953 with the "Mullionaires" to rally their sales troops.  Be sure to sing along with the bouncing ball!

Friday, July 5, 2013

Summer Dining

Time for summer shack dining!  Let's meet up at the Seminole Restaurant in Clewiston, Florida for some catfish and hush puppies.

Friday, June 21, 2013

The "Flagship" of Holiday Inns

This Holiday Inn on 57th St. in New York City is advertised as the "flagship" of Holiday Inns, but I'm not sure why.  Sure, it's got a lot of rooms, and it's in the biggest city where "The World's Innkeeper" has inns, but I don't think it was that awesome.

I'm including the card as a tip 'o the hat to a best friend from high school, with whom I made a trip to NYC for the first time in 1980.  We had a great time, leaving on a 3:00am Greyhound bus from Portland, ME, for the long weekend.  After a few years, we drifted apart, but managed to reconnect last weekend for dinner after about 30 years.  Somewhat disappointed in ourselves for letting so much time slip by, I think we'll keep in better touch now!

It's still there today as a Holiday Inn, and the buildings that were there on either side are still there, although they didn't show up in the idealized postcard illustration above!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Moving Stairs

Here's an old escalator from the Chicago Initial Subway System.  According to the back of this nice linen card, "Reversible escalators are to operate between train platforms and mezzanine stations of Chicago 8-3/4 mile, two route, initial subways.  Other equipment is to include streamlined all-metal cars, rubber-insulated tracks and fluorescent lighting."  The Chicago subway opened in the early 30's, and it looks quite pristine as compared to today.

Escalators come in lots of varieties.  While looking for more information about the stairs above, I stumbled upon a great article about escalators in the WebUrbanist site, which is one of my favorite sites altogether!  Take a look here: and you'll see the longest, the shortest, and the highest, as well as escalators that curve and ones that are built for bicycles!
Hold Child's Hand Keep Feet Away Sign

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Office

In honor of the final episode of "The Office" tonight, here's an advertising postcard from offices-past.  Our executive is using his "Easier to Use" Soundscriber, the dictaphone with the unique green disks.  Read all about it here, while saying goodbye to the gang at Dunder-Mifflin  tonight!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Mad Men Ditto Machine

Here's a joyous secretary thrilled with the copies coming from her RoNEo Duplicator.  According to the back of the card, they are" world-famous for their Beauty of Design, Efficiency and Simplicity of Operation and Overall Economy.  RoNEo is CLEAN to operate and the only Duplicator to reproduce continuous tone photographs.  Try RoNEo for complete Satisfaction."

I couldn't find any contemporary information about this machine, other than it a brand in the UK going back to the early 1900's.  However, I did find a reverent, interesting video of a similar A. B. Dick machine in action.  The video falls just a tad short of fetishing the duplicating machine, from the removal of the dust cover, application of the purple fluid and the climactic arrival of the aromatic copies in the output tray.  Enjoy:

Thursday, May 2, 2013


Different hotels, but cool TV's!  The TV Motel at the top is halfway between Montreal and Quebec City, which I guess means in the middle of "nulle part"  (That's French for "nowhere).  The bottom view is the interior of a room at the Rondee Motor Hotel in Sedona, Arizona.  Great TV on the credenza, only bested by the awesome 1960's lighting fixture hanging above it (and the avacado green telephone next to it).

Thursday, April 25, 2013

On the Jackrabbit

What's wrong with the image on this postcard?

Your comments welcome!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Boston's Copley Plaza

A tragic event this weekend at the Boston Marathon, with sympathy going out to the thousands of people personally affected, especially those close to loved ones who died or were injured.  The bombs went off right near the Copley Plaza Hotel, a historic hotel right on the finish line.  The hotel was where all media outlets were stationed, and Channel 10 News reporter Nathan Pransky described being stranded inside for several hours: 
"We ducked into the Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel as officers were expanding the lockdown zone.  For the next few hours, nobody would leave - or enter - the hotel. With cell phone service seemingly non-existent, frantic family members scrambled through the lobby looking for loved ones. By the time everyone realized what was happening, the hotel had essentially become a refugee camp.  And through the hotel windows, the sun shined brightly - a reminder of how gorgeous of a day it should have been outside."
 The hotel has of course seen finer days and is wonderfully preserved.  It opened in 1912 on the site of the original Boston Museum of Fine Arts, architected by Henry Janeway Hardenbergh who also designed the Willard in Washington, D. C. and the Plaza Hotel in New York City.  It has been host to every U. S. President since William Howard Taft, and John Singer Sargent kept a room there where he painted a number of his portraits.

The two cards above show the luxurious surroundings in the Tea Room and the Main Restaurant.  The hotel has retained its character, as you can witness by visiting a photo of the lobby on Wikipedia.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Pioneer Village

A great pair of chrome cards from the glory days of family owned Roadside Attractions.  The top card features "Elmer" at the Entrance. According to the back of the card, he and Mathilda Just Can't Get Going, Located in Minden, Nebraska (i.e. the middle of nowhere), here can be seen 30,000 items in 22 buildings on 3 city blocks, showing man's progress over the past 120 years.   Today?  It's still here.  But what do people think?  See here! It's still going strong!!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Beauty Rest Motor Court

From the back:  On beautiful Lake Cherokee.  Two places to eat and sleep, here and home.  One of Tennessee's Best.  9 miles west of Rogersville, Tenn. on U. S. 1-W.  79 miles to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park.  21 units built of beautiful everlasting Permastone.  Fireproof.  Air cooled.  Electrically Heated.  Tile baths.  Radio in every room.

An especially interesting linen card, because it shows the staff and some sullen customers, before their Beauty Rest.  Note the postcard display and the appealing design in the floor tiles.  Also, I'm not sure about the "everlasting Permastone," as I could not locate this place using Google Earth!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Shamrock Hotel

Your guess is as good as mine as to why this is called the "Shamrock" Hotel, but I figured it was a good choice for St. Patrick's Day!  Despite the absence of leprechauns and a plate of  corned beef and cabbage, this is a great linen card with a really cool pool and diving platform!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Diplomat Motor Hotel

Located in the heart of the Nation's capital, The Diplomat has 200 luxury rooms and suites, an Olympic swimming pool, a cocktail lounge, ample parking and complete air conditioning.  It is only minutes away from train, bus and airport terminals, the Capitol, the Washington Monument, Jefferson's Memorial, Lincoln Memorial and Immaculate Conception Shrine.

Love the "Flags of Many Nations" on the wall in the lobby.  Click on the postcard to see an enlarged view.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Guess Who Turned 100?

Grand Central Terminal, NYC 352 Section of new Grand Central Terminal, NYC 1266 Interior, Grand Central Station, NYC 1709

Grand Central Station in New York City, that's who!  On February 1.

Visit their 100th birthday website here:

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Ice Harvesting

It's been freezing here lately, so I thought it would be appropriate to do a post relating to ice!  This card shows ice harvesting on the Kennebec River, in Maine. 
It's always great to add a little background information to my posts, but in this case no one has done it better than Steve Round, a 1st grade teacher in Providence, Rhode Island.  Visit his class website for lots more information.  For an excellent treatise on ice harvesting from the 1918 Book Of Knowledge, follow this link as well.  It's a great article, with lots of character and writing style from the same era as the postcard pictured above.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Hunger Games

This is a great "rally" card, one of several hundred that churches could send to Sunday School students if they didn't show up. I have a lot of them in my collection, and a common thread is to induce guilt in the recipient for not doing their part.  The card above is typical.  With the recent popularity of the "Hunger Games" books and movie, however, this one is also a little creepy if you think about it for too long!
Here's an earlier post on the same topic:
See you Sunday, if you know what's good for you!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

One Hour Martinizing

OK, we know it has to do with dry-cleaning, but what IS "Martinizing?" Was there a Martin involved?  Why, yes there was...
From the official website:  Martinizing Dry Cleaning was founded in 1949 by a New York chemist named Henry Martin. Mr. Martin revolutionized the dry cleaning industry by offering ‘on-site’ cleaning at retail locations.  He did this by using a less flammable solvent to clean clothes. At the time, dry cleaning was done with highly flammable solvents, which made it necessary for the plants were located remotely from the storefronts for safety reasons. A customer would typically drop off their cleaning in town.  The garments would then travel to a remote production facility to be cleaned and pressed and would finally return to the store several days later for pick-up. With the use of the new solvent discovered by Mr. Martin, dry cleaning plants could now be located much more conveniently and the process could be carried out in a timely manner.

In the US, Martinizing franchaise locations have fallen from 526 in 2001 to 229 in 2012, clearly in a steady decline.  In general, 20% of U.S. dry cleaning businesses have closed in the past decade, so Martinizing is falling at a faster rate.

However, it may always, live on, in Bill Griffith's Zippy Comic Strips. 


Thursday, January 3, 2013

Where to Stay

Where to stay?  Why at the Greenbrier Motel of course.  The back says: "The newest and most ultra modern.  50 units offering the traveler comfort in Air Conditioning.  Thermo Controlled Heating.  Room TV and Heated Swimming Pool.  Johnson Restaurant Adjoining.  Our Bridal Suite with circular bed, the talk of the South land."  Female model on the circular bed not included.
Best suited for folks traveling through Lumberton, North Carolina, where this motel is located!