Tuesday, May 22, 2018
It looks like these two are in some small town out in the middle of nowhere or in some sort of mining camp. Then again, during the depression, the government started building huge dams in the western United States. Whole towns were also built to house workers and their families. Maybe these two worked in the private towns, full of gambling, liquor, and others vices, that cropped up to provide the less approved activities.
Monday, May 21, 2018
Sunday, May 20, 2018
Saturday, May 19, 2018
Another real photo postcard. There's some writing on the back, but it's too faded to fully make out. I can tell, though, that it's not in English. There's part of a date that starts with a day 6, a month that I can't decipher, and a year, 1920.
Thursday, May 17, 2018
The weird world of real photo postcards. For those of you who can't read sideways, it says, "Calls herself grandpa's lady." That is the strangest hat I've ever seen on a child. At first I thought she was standing in front of something, but after blowing it up, no, it's just the hat.
Tuesday, May 15, 2018
When I first started gathering up old photographs, I was only interested in cabinet cards, CDV's, and glass negatives. Mostly, because they were really, really old. Of course, back then, in the late sixties, World War 2 veterans were everywhere, and I knew quite a few World War 1 veterans as well. In fact, I knew a lot of people who were born in the 19th century. I knew people who could tell me about the first time they had seen a car, an airplane; the first time they had heard a radio or seen a talking movie. Somehow pictures from the recent past seemed far less interesting. As time passed and as people born in the twenties, thirties and forties became fewer in number, the photographs they took became fascinating to me. And now, for some unknown reason, I've started looking for really, really old images once again.
It didn't take a lot of research to dig up some info on J. K. Patch of Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts. Jonas King Patch was born in 1824 and became an itinerant photographer in the daguerreotype and tintype era. Eventually he settled down at one location, in Shelburne Falls, and opened a studio. Jonas died in 1909. He had several children, one of whom, Henry S. Patch followed in his father's footsteps and took over the studio. Henry was born in 1856 and died in 1939. I found a notation that Henry gave up the studio ten years before his death. I also found a brief notice where Jonas was referred to as a prominent photographist. A term I've never run into before, but I like it.
Sunday, May 13, 2018
So much for the practice of typing out what's on the back of postcards. I'm just too lazy to transcribe all of this info. So, Oscar Griffith was born in 1895, arrived on Catalina, with his parents, at age 13 and became a coin diver. Tourists, coming to the island would throw coins from the boats, and local boys would dive for the pennys, nickels, and dimes. . The harbor waters were so clear that tourists could see the kids touch bottom. Griffith served in the army in World War 1 and was an attraction at the 1934 World's Fair. I'm sure he must have made the occasional trip to the mainland, but it seems that, other than the war and fair, he never really left the island.