Friday, September 24, 2010

Thailand – 1961

No. 212 CHOLBURI THAILAND: Working in the Salt-fields
 I don't usually post multiple postcards in one story, but when I happened across this vintage set of cards from Thailand the other day, I knew they belonged together and would be sharing the same page! All three postcards were posted by the same person from Bangkok on 25 October, 1961, to different addresses different people at the same address in Rome, Italy and seem to have been torn from what was probably the same book of postcards, with the left hand edge of each card having a torn off edge.

No. 161 THAILAND: Nakorn Chaisri, Thailand. Ploughing paddy fields.
Each of the cards carries identical postage – one 25 satang stamp (green in colour, with a pen and world map floating over an envelope) and another 1 baht stamp (crimson in colour with a pen, letters and a globe). It seems incredibly appropriate that these stamps were part of a set issued to celebrate International Correspondence Week!

No. 115 THAILAND: The Thai Fishing
I'm including the back of one of the postcards, but for reasons of privacy have masked the name of the sender and recipient as both parties may quite feasibly still be alive.

Published by Soma Nimit, a Bangkok based company at 1154 New Road, these ethnic vintage postcards cards are a wonderful record of traditional farming and fishing methods, although the collection of salt seems to be as labour intensive now as it was decades ago.
Find more vintage postcards over at Beth's postcard blog The Best Hearts are Crunchy and join other collectors on Postcard Friendship Friday.

Postcard Friendship Friday

Friday, September 10, 2010

Cheers! - 1905

This absolutely gorgeous undivided back postcard, printed using the chromolithographic method was published by Meissner & Buch and posted in 1905. When I spotted this vintage postcard I was obviously disappointed to see that two of the corners had been cut (presumably as a result of having been hastily removed from hinges in an album), but the image was such a fine example that I bought it anyway!

Based in Leipzig, Germany, Meissner & Buch (1876 through to 1914) were known for their fine quality postcards featuring pretty women and children, with and without greetings, and this design is typical of their output, although the image of the girl in a bonnet raising a glass reminds me somewhat of a vintage soft drinks advertising campaign.

The reverse of the card carries no copyright information – instead, it's printed along the front left hand edge of the card. The inscription reads:

Meissner & Buch, Leipzig. Künstler-Postkarten Serie 1232 “Auf Dein Wohl” Gesetzl, geschützt
which roughly translated means:
Meissner & Leipzig. Artists Postcards Series 1232 "To your Health". Copyrighted design

Find more vintage postcards over at Beth's postcard blog The Best Hearts are Crunchy and join other collectors on Postcard Friendship Friday.

Postcard Friendship Friday

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Southport Pier and Donkeys on Southport Beach – early 1910s

This gorgeous embossed postcard is a classic British seaside souvenir. Whilst embossed postcards from the early years of the last century are reasonably easy to come by, this was such a fine example that I couldn't resist it! The gelatin finish is highly glossy and has remained very well preserved over the years, with only a little cracking in small parts of the embossed frame. The card was issued by Valentine’s Co. Ltd, a family run business founded in Dundee, Scotland by James Valentine in 1825. The company expanded to London, England and was at one time hugely successful until business eventually dwindled after several generations and they closed their doors in 1963. Often recognisable by a large "V" symbol on the reverse, this postcard was part of their Valentine's Series and carries no logo.

Being an uncirculated divided back postcard, I found myself with very little to go on as regards dating the card precisely, until I stumbled upon a wonderful online resource currently being compiled by the University of St. Andrews Library - the monochrome James Valentine & Co. image archive. Through this archive I've been able to track down the dates of the photographs used in this card!

The upper oval featuring Southport Pier was originally entitled "Southport - On the Pier" and was registered by the company in around 1908-12, whereas the lower panel with the donkeys on Southport Beach (originally "Southport - Donkeys on the Sands") was registered in 1906. With this in mind this card probably dates from the early 1910s.

I just love the incidental details in these scenes – the donkey riding girls are actually riding side-saddle! The pier quite clearly has a wooden walkway and a railtrack, presumably used to carry the tram which still runs to this day from Southport to the pier head. Southport Pier (now situated in Merseyside) was designed by James Brunlees and first opened in 1860. A Grade II listed building and Britain's second longest pier at 1,112 metres (3,650 feet), amazingly this relic of Victorian times risked being demolished by the local council in the 1990s! Thankfully, this decision was overruled by one vote, funds were found and the pier was restored to its former glory.