RSS Feed

Category Archives: Bob Lawrence Photography

French fan


This lovely French fan, in paper and very fragile, dates from the early 1900s.  At the lower right is “Eventails Duvelleroy” (“eventails” is “fan” and “Duvelleroy” was the company that made the fan.  Over on the left side, there’s a sketch of two men, one on either side of what appears too be a crest.  Each man is wearing a sash and they both have walking sticks.  Then “Hotel Knickerbocker Restaurant”.   The Knickerbocker Hotel was only in operation from 1906 to 1920.
Duvelleroy returned women’s fans to society in Paris, after they’d been out of fashion since the late 1800s.  They’re still in business producing remarkable fans.

Every time I open this 14″ fan, something falls off.  It’s the paper backing, not the mount, that’s coming apart.  The gold pressed details on the guards is still visible.  All in all, pretty good for a centenarian.

Smoky Mountains Trailways Bus

trailwaysfront trailwaysback

I don’t know squat about pre-WWII buses (or any other buses, for that matter), but I was curious about this Smoky Mountains Trailways bus.  By the shape of the windshield, I think it may be a Mack. I welcome a correction on that. The card was printed in the early 40s (Smoky Mountains National Park was dedicated, by FDR, no less, in 1940.
I read a posting that stated the “founder of Trailways” had a lodge up in the mountains.  I couldn’t track down who that may have been, but there was no real Trailways.  It was Trailways Transportation System, comprising five individual companies, that was set up in 1936.
Darn nice-looking card, though.  Asheville Post Card Company, natch.  It’s linen finish, but borderless.  I thought it might be a Curt Teich, but that inventory number doesn’t match up (I get a lot of that.  APCC used other printers).
As I post this, the Smoky Mountains are actually quite smoky from the numerous forest fires we have going on.

Trailways Token

Posted on

I found this locally.  In 1963, according to an ad in the Kingsport Times-News, Tays Farmer was the parts department manager at Daugherty Bros. Chevrolet in Gate City.  The worn notch at the top indicates it was hanging off something for quite a while.  There’s a blackening around the notch.  In the center front is what remains of a Trailways logo.  On the back it states “Travel Bus Trailways”.  (Only so much you can do within a circle, word-wise)
If that is, indeed, a worn Trailways  logo on the front, it’s the National Trailways Bus System logo and dates this to the ’50s.

Later:  on the ‘net, I managed to find another Trailways token very similar to this one, but from Bybee VA.  On that token, the side with the name on it is the reverse of this one; i.e., the “Travel Bus Trailways” side has the name on it.

This token is considered rare.

How to Repurpose a Tailgate

This is in Cromona KY.

Piedmont Racing


From 1982 to 1988 Piedmont Airlines, apparently feeling flush in good times and with an infusion of cash from Norfolk & Western Railroad, ventured into NASCAR.  They were the first airline to do so.  They sponsored Richard Childress’ team from Ricky Rudd to Sterling Marlin.  This iron-on patch is 3.75″ wide and 2.5″ deep.  Incidentally, Piedmont was the 10th largest airline in the U.S. at the time.  I think United owns the name now.

Piedmont Tea

Starting in 1987 or so, Piedmont Airlines acquired some Boeing 767-200ERs and began service from Charlotte NC to Gatwick in London.  This tea container (it still has the original tea bags in it) measures about 4.75″ long, 2.75 deep and about 4″ tall.  It was made in England.  I would expect this to have been distributed around the time of the origination of the service.  Speedbird seen!

Down the Road into Morning


We were heading down an abandoned and cleared railbed on a frosty morning.  When we hit that sunny area, the temperature went up 10 degrees, easy.

Cinderella Stamp


This is a Cinderella stamp.  It’s also called a Poster stamp. This one is about 2″ horizontal and a little over 2″ vertical.

Some time ago, I bought a lot of advertising stamps and didn’t think too hard about doing any research on them.

Turns out (as you can read in the link above) everyone was Over.The.Moon for advertising stamps in the early part of the 20th century.  I don’t know exactly what these wacky ancestors did with the stamps, since they seldom had glue on the back.

Dumb Buy


I paid $3 for these.  I am stupid.  I actually stand in front of the mirror in the mornings and say, “Please, Bob, don’t buy anything you don’t know anything about.”  And how does that all work out for me?  Each one of these is worth south of 30 cents. But they’re neat as hell.  I only saw two others the same day (one was postmarked and one was torn in half…and postmarked).
I like airplane stuff.  This 1941 carmine air mail stamp depicts a “transport” aircraft.  It puzzled the heck out of me…looked like a Boeing, kind of, in the front, but that tri-tail is pure Constellation, sort of.  A website pointed out that if the wing flaps were lowered, they would scrape the runway on landing.  Anyway, it’s purely fictional, some ignisfatuus in the artist’s concept brain file.  Well, I like ignisfatuus (’cause it’s obscure…a crossword thing), but it’s really just a mashup.

Window, Damaged

width="300" |

This is in an old, abandoned school in Glade Spring VA.
It must have been a pleasant room, before the ransackers came.