Thursday, December 31, 2009

French New Year's Greeting Card - Bonne année - 1917

I always find any postcard printed during the Golden Age of postcard production in France in the early decades of the last century absolutely irresistible! This hand-tinted real photograph postcard issued by French printers Suzy is in superb condition. Compared to some of the more garish colours that came out of the studios of the numerous Parisian postcard publishers right through the 1920s this is a rather tasteful affair with its subtler washes, although the crimson used on the patterned tops, sock trimmings and flowers is a dazzling hint of what those hand-colourist would be capable of in the future!

Whilst this postcard may be uncirculated, luckily for us the sender dated the Italian New Year's Greeting message - 31st December, 1917 - and also added their location - Alexandria in Egypt - a detail which inevitably piques the curiosity as once again there's a curious cross over of journeys and untold stories here in a French postcard sent from Egypt to Italy...

Happy New Year!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Winter scene and "Glückliches Neujahr" - early 1900s

This gorgeous winter scene with its Happy New Year message is my Christmas postcard to you all for this year. The postcard was issued by Paul Trabert of Leipzig (shown here by the initials P.T.L) who was operational from 1901 until at least the late 1960s. He set up his family-run business with its own publishing department Art de Vienne and was also a contract collotype printer for other firms until end of the First World War. This postcard would also appear to be a collotype or some other kind of high quality printing technique, whilst the snow flurries seems to have been finished by hand as the matte surface is slightly raised on the snow flakes. The card is artist signed but the signature isn't clear.

It was posted to "Volosca" (or rather "Volosko" – the spelling of the address is Italian on the card, as is the message) which is now found in modern day Croatia, although when this card was posted it would have been part of the district of Istria in the Austrian Littoral. This popular resort on the Austrian Riviera was a crown land (Kronland) within the Austrian Empire from 1813 till 1867 and subsequently part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire or Dual Monarchy from 1867 to 1918. The area has always been linguistically and ethnically very mixed with Italians, Slovenes, Croats, Germans, Furlans, and Istriots being the main ethnic groups - its history is a long and complicated one and this postcard is evidence of this!

There isn't much left of the postage stamp, but we can just about make out the beginning of “Magyar Kir Posta” (meaning "Hungarian Royal Postage"), and with the currency “Filler” and the value of 5 overprinted in black we have just enough information to identify the stamp as an Hungarian postage stamp issued in 1900 which featured the Turul, the mythical bird of the Magyars (not visible) flying over the royal Hungarian crown (visible). This postcard must have been posted from neighbouring Kingdom of Hungary, therefore, as the Austro-Hungarian issues I believe, were issued in Heller currency. This is a thorny area, however, so please do correct me below in the comments if anybody knows better!

Happy PFF and of course, Merry Christmas!

Find more vintage postcards at Marie's Cpaphil Vintage Postcard Blog and join other collectors on Postcard Friendship Friday.

Thanks to The Postcard Album

Friday, December 11, 2009

Jackie Coogan - circa 1927-29

After the popularity of my recent post about child star Shirley Temple I thought I'd share another vintage film star postcard with you here featuring yet another child actor - Jackie Coogan. The film stills of him alongside Charlie Chaplin in The Kid are some of cinema's most lasting and iconic images, whilst his later appearance as Uncle Fester in 62 episodes of the classic US TV show The Addams Family in the 1960s assured his place in the annals of television history. He was also instrumental in helping to get the California Child Actor's Bill passed into law - it is also also known as the Coogan Act or Coogan Bill - which ensures that the earnings of child stars are safeguarded until they enter adulthood and cannot be squandered away by reckless parents or guardians (as indeed happened in the case of Coogan).

In this photograph Jackie Coogan is sporting his trademark pageboy haircut - he would be shorn of his locks in the 1927 movie Johnny Get Your Hair Cut, in a clever gimmick used to both sell the movie and also mark the actor's growing maturity at the ripe old age of twelve!

The uncirculated real photo postcard was issued by the Milan-based publisher A. Traldi (Ed. A. Traldi Milano). It is Traldi's lovely - and for the times, retro - Art Nouveau logo on the reverse of the card which also helps date it with some precision to 1929 at the latest, for their logo changed completely in 1930.

Find more vintage postcards at Marie's Cpaphil Vintage Postcard Blog and join other collectors on Postcard Friendship Friday.