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Monthly Archives: September 2017

In the Land of the Sky

I was going through a pile of perfectly uninteresting post cards at a flea market and happened across this one.  I recognized that it was early, so, for research practice, I bought for the extravagant sum of $1.
Turned out to be an interesting card.  It dates to around 1913 and refers to a sobriquet once applied to the State of North Carolina.  The Land of the Sky, or, Adventures in Mountain Byways is a book published in 1876 by Christian Reid, a.k.a. Mrs. Frances Tiernan.   Later, Asheville adopted the phrase to describe its own vaunted location.  I don’t get the “coffee” bit, nor the reference to Blockade Hill, but I haven’t read the book and will read it probably never, so, well, there you are.

The card was published by Southern Post Card Company in Asheville and it was printed by Curt Teich in Chicago. Teich’s inventory numbers weren’t as organized the the teens as they later became, but the number does set it right at 1913.  In 1914, the publishing houses went to the “Let’s Save Ink!” white-border style (oh, a note: as I’ve mentioned before, if you read that the “linen era” cards were called that because using linen gave them a nice texture, you’ll know the author didn’t know about post card production…the linen finish was applied during printing by using a special textured plate).  Read all about it in the excellent Postcard America, Curt Teich and the Imaging of a Nation by Jeffrey L. Meikle (University of Texas Press, 2015/ISBN 978-0-292-72661-1)

Good card.  Glad I forked over a buck for it.

The Old Land of Oz

I dunno. I think the costumes are creepy.  The Tin Man looks like something from “Radar Men from the Moon” (1952)(look it up. it stars Commando Cody, the man with an asbestos ass).  Dorothy is lovely, though, fake pigtails and all.   The place opened in ’70, burned in ’75 and closed in ’80.  The fire destroyed the original Dorothy dress from the movie, along with other artifacts.  It fell into disrepair and was vandalized.  It’s now open again for short periods during the year.

John Mellencamp sang, “Life goes on, long after the thrill of living is gone…”

Postcard published by Land of Oz…no printer’s credit shown.

(I know that Dorothy looks as if she’s floating.  Trick of the light – she has her right foot raised slightly to look as if she’s walking.)

Grts, Pennington Gap

“Grts”, in post card lingo, often refers to a card with “Greetings from…” on the front.  The picture on the front of this card is some generic view of a river with a train steaming along it.  When I looked, the railroad in Pennington doesn’t get too close to the Powell River, anyway.  The overprint just ties it to Pennington, for tourism’s sake, you know.  I would date this card to the late 40s, early 50s.

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