Sunday, January 30, 2011

Minnesota State Capitol Senate Chamber

I am starting a new feature called Minnesota Mondays featuring Minnesota postcards. The image used on the title button is the Minnesota State Capitol from a postcard published by V. O. Hammon.

The postcard featured this week is another V. O. Hammon card of the Senate Chamber in the Minnesota State Capitol.

Here is a description of the Senate Chamber from the The Minnesota capitol: official guide and history by Julie Celina Gauthier dated 1907 and digitized by Google:

THE SENATE CHAMBER. The Senate Chamber occupies the center of the west wing, and is lighted by a circular dome decorated in old ivory and gold, which also forms an ornament to the exterior.

Opposite to the main entrance is the raised chair and desk of the presiding officer, with two columns and entablature forming a background. Above this, as well as upon the opposite side, are arched openings to galleries for spectators. The marble used for columns, pilasters, door-casings and base is of Fleur de Peche (peach blossom) imported from France. It has a soft creamy ground toning to yellow, flecked with strong violets and rich reds. It is considered the most beautiful marble in the building.

The pendentives between the arches are decorated with figures of "Freedom," "Courage," "Justice" and "Equality," designed by Mr. Garnsey and done by Mr. Willett. These and all the other decorations are in lower tones of color than are the two lunettes by Mr. Blashfield, for which they form a suitable setting. The subdued richness of the room could only be accomplished by the combined efforts and understanding of the several artists who worked for this result.

MR. BLASHFIELD'S PAINTING—"THE DISCOVERERS AND CIVILIZERS LED TO THE SOURCE OF THE MISSISSIPPI." In his two lunettes—which are said by the critics in the East to be his best work—Mr. Blashfield has admirably attuned his colors to their surroundings. The general tone of color in "The Discoverers and Civilizers Led to the Source of the Mississippi" is a cool white and green in the center, changing into soft warm greys and reds towards the sides.

In the center of the picture, seated upon a slight elevation, and in august dignity, is the Great Manitou, the chief god of the Indians. In his hand he holds an urn from which pours the Father of Waters, the Mississippi river. At the right are a number of men—the first explorers and pioneers over whom soars the Spirit of Discovery holding a mariner's compass in one hand and pointing towards the Source of the Mississippi with the other. This group is menaced by a superb Indian in war bonnet, who stands near an Indian girl who crouches at the foot of the Great Manitou, and to whom a priest is offering salvation in the form of a crucifix, across the rushing waters. Back of the priest are men, women and children; the dogs held in leash and the boat upon the opposite side show the principal means of travel in the early days. The colonists are guided by the Spirit of Civilization, who floats gracefully above them. The background consists of pine trees, rocks and sky.

Postcard Publisher Ads 1906

Some postcard publisher ads published in National Druggist in 1906.

Source: Google Books Result

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Oskar Andersson Cartoon on Swedish Stamp

This postcard shows the Swedish stamp issued on March 24, 1977 to commemorate the centenary of Oskar Andersson's birth. Oskar Andersson was an early Swedish cartoonist. This cartoon is called "Politeness." The large OA on the left is Oskar Andersson's signature.

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

Thursday, January 27, 2011

PFF - G'day from Australia

I just learned today about Australia Day which is celebrated in Australia on January 26. Australia Day is a national holiday that commemorates the 1788 arrival of a fleet of ships from England to establish a penal colony at Sydney Cove. The real celebration is over for this year, but I decided to do an Australia post anyway.

This is one of the cute Australian animal postcards I found at an Australian booth that was at the Minnesota State Fair one year (about 20 years ago). Can you name all the animals (I can't). Can you say "G'day"?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

VTT - A Rare-Bit & Peter Pauper ABC Cookbooks

My Rare-Bit postcard and my ABC cookbooks are from different eras, but they share a whimsical approach to cooking illustrations. The postcard with the chef magically creating a pretty lady out of rarebit ingredients is early twentieth century, © 1909 by the Colonial Art Pub. Co. The cookbooks are mid-century publications by Peter Pauper Press.

These Peter Pauper Press books are 4-3/8" X 7-3/8". Peter Pauper Press published many small cookbooks, including other ABCs. The ABC of Casseroles is © 1954 and the ABC of Gourmet Cookery is © 1956. Both books have decorations by Ruth McCrea.

The pages below are from the ABC of Casseroles. The books have ABC decorations matched up with recipe names in alphabetical order. However, the decorations do not relate to the recipes shown on the same pages.

The Pleasures of the Used Text: Revealing Traces of Consumption is an interesting article (though written in academese) that makes the point that the traces left by previous owners of used books add to the interest and value for some collectors. The article focuses on Peter Pauper Press books as "A Case Study of Collectibility." An excerpt:
Our favorite examples are from the delightful ‘ABC’ series, which includes drink and dining recipes for all occasions. These colorful cookbooks, each in the same tidy size, and featuring similar, pleasing designs, focus on specialized culinary themes, for example, ‘chafing dish cookery’, ‘herb and spice cookery’, ‘ wine cookery’, ‘and ‘microwave cookery’. We are not alone in valuing these minor manuscripts: several recent exhibitions reveal the growing estimation and cultural cachet of Peter Pauper Press -– demonstrating how marginal publications often transform into culturally notable artifacts, due to their provenance, their publication history, or their popularity. We invite the reader to join us as we dust off an expanding archive of little literature, a unique retro window into an aesthetic economy of books.

I'm participating in Vintage Thingie Thursday

Saturday, January 22, 2011

John F. Kennedy on Stamps

If you have been watching the news this week, you probably know that January 20 was the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy's inauguration. I am showing this postcard with Kennedy stamps from many nations in honor of that anniversary.

This undated card advertises the Interpex International Stamp & Coin Show Kennedy Memorial Exhibit. Surprisingly, the 5¢ U.S. stamp honoring Kennedy that was issued issued May 29, 1964 for Kennedy's 47th birthday is not shown. This seems like a strange omission unless the exhibit was held before the U.S. stamp was issued.

stamp image from Wikipedia

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

Thursday, January 20, 2011

PFF - John F. Kennedy - 50 Years Later

John F. Kennedy was inaugurated 50 years ago on January 20, 1961. I visited Washington D. C. in the spring of 1961, and I still have the postcards I bought then. I will always remember the day that Kennedy was killed because November 22 is my birthday.

I agree with the description of this video where it is stated "It was 50 years ago… But for many of us of a certain age it seems like yesterday. "

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

VTT - Early 20th Century Style Exotic Girls

The postcard above and the burnt wood (pyrography) plaque below are from the early 20th century. Even though the postcard is titled "My Best Girl," they both seem to me to represent an exotic fantasy dream girl more than the girl next door.

size 11-1/2" diameter

This plaque is marked FLEMISH 853 ART on the back. Flemish Art was the largest and best-known manufacturer of pyrography products. This plaque would have been sold with the design stamped on the wood and would have been burned by a hobbyist following the stamped design. There are two red glass jewels glued to the crown. "Brilliant glass jewels" were said to add lustre and give a luxurious finish to pyrographic designs.

I used to think the Flemish Art numbers referred to the design. However, in an old burnt wood supplies catalog, the 853 refers to all the 12" plaques, not to a specific design. The 12" plaques were priced at $0.25 each or $3.00 per dozen. Jewels in the size used here were priced at 50¢ per hundred.

I'm participating in Vintage Thingie Thursday

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Cats and Dogs on Stamps

Above are postcards from the United States Postal Service showing the Spay Neuter stamps issued in 2002.

According to information from USPS the puppy, Kirby, and kitten, Samantha, featured on the stamps were adopted from animal shelters and were respectively neutered and spayed.

I bought the dog card at a postcard show and just received the cat card from a Postcrosser. I was really surprised to see that the cat postcard is oversize, while the dog card I have is regular size. Now I am wondering whether both were produced in both sizes.

Below is a sheet of 2010 Animal Rescue: Adopt a Shelter Pet stamps that I bought to use on my mail. These are the postal service's 2010 social awareness stamps. They feature animals adopted from shelters and are intended to raise awareness of the need to adopt shelter pets.

Other U. S. postage stamps featuring cats and dogs are a 13¢ stamp of a kitten and puppy playing in the snow issued in 1982 for use on holiday postcards and images of a cat and a dog that were included in the "Bright Eyes" set of five pets in 1998.

There are also many cat and dog stamps from other countries. The YouTube video A Cat's Stamp of Approval shows many of the cat stamps that have been issued throughout the world.

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

Thursday, January 13, 2011

PFF - Sunny Florida vs. Freezing North

There are many variations of this postcard theme comparing Florida weather to the weather in the North. Another one I have is here. All are meant to make the folks up north envious of Florida vacationers. I think this card is pretty accurate in showing what the weather in the North has been like this winter. But, even Florida hasn't been very warm this year.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

VTT - Cute Kittens on Squeaker Postcard and Shaped Books

The kitten postcard above has a squeaker and googly eyes inside between the picture and backing layers. It is printed in Japan and is from about 1960.

Below are the covers and centerfolds of two small shaped children's books about kittens © 1949 by Whitman Publishing Co. The Pit-A-Pat book has the artist's name, Florence Sarah Winship, on the cover. The Fluff book does not list an artist or author. Both have twelve pages and are marked 1022-5 on the back. The size is about 4" X 8" when closed.

I'm participating in Vintage Thingie Thursday

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Russian New Year Stamp Postcard 1977

If you are interested in stamps and postcards, be sure to visit the new Sunday Stamps Meme at Viridian's Postcard Blog.

I like both postcards showing images of stamps and Soviet New Year postcards. This postcard combines those interests. This card was published in 1977 for the 1978 New Year. I haven't found any information on the top stamp image. The stamp on the bottom is the Soviet New Year Stamp issued in 1976 for the 1977 New Year. I found a large image of that on Wikimedia Commons.

С Новым Годом = Happy New Year

For more information see my article on Russian New Year Postcards and the links at the bottom of that article.

For more of my blog posts about stamps, click the "stamps" label at the bottom of this post or my sidebar.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

PFF - Christmas & New Years Postcards

This postcard is part of the New Year Bird Series. According to the ad on the back of the card, it is a sample of the Christmas and New Years Post Cards given for subscribing to Up-to-Date Farming about a hundred years ago. What an offer! For 25 cents you could get a one year subscription and 15 postcards! For 50 cents you could get a two year subscription and 50 postcards! I would have subscribed just to get the postcards.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Hyvää Joulua - Merry Christmas from Finland

Hyvää Joulua
Uutta Vuotta

translation: Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

This is a Postcrossing postcard received from Finland.

Here is a video I found on YouTube showing everyday postcards from Finland:

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year - С Новым Годом

Here is a new style of Russian New Year postcard. It has deckle edges and glittery decorations that don't show up in the scan.
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