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The pig

I saw this in downtown Williamson WV.  Figured you’d like to see it:

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Are those flames coming up from this piggy’s trotters?

Strange Pin

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I wonder about this 1″ pinback.  I found it in a local flea.  It’s a plastic finish, but it has an odd texture.  No maker mark.

Black pin, white microphone apparently issuing lightning bolts from TN VA.  Bizarre.

Probably it’s for an uneasy association of Tennessee and Virginia broadcasters.

Johnson Bible College

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According to Tennessee Place Names, by Larry L. Miller (Indiana University Press), Kimberlin Heights got its name, eventually (1887), from Jacob Kimberlin, who mined lead in the area in the late 1700s.  In 1897, Ashley S. Johnson founded the School for Evangelists in Kimberlin Heights near the French Broad River.  He allowed the school to be named after him in 1909 and stayed as its head until his death in 1925.  As those of you who have used typewriters can attest, it’s difficult to type a post card on them.  This was nicely done.  The stamp isn’t any help in dating the card, since 1 cent postage covered a number of years.  Kraus Manufacturing of New York, the publisher of this card, was in business from 1912 to 1930.

The school still exists as Johnson University.

 

Pigeon Security – On the Job

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Boeing 377

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This is essentially a B-29 Superfortress 3.0 – the Boeing 377 Stratocruiser (the C-97 Stratofreighter was 2.0), here flying out of San Francisco.  Pan Am was the first to take this plane on a commercial flight (San Francisco to Honolulu) in 1949.  Boeing built 55 for commercial use.  All of them were retired by 1963.

The back is interesting.  I have a couple of cards from the Chicago area, dated in the early 50s, sent to “Lucky Mail Bag” or “Good Luck” to this address (a residence).  The last name of the addressee is “Leja” .  I have no idea what the “WCPCC” means.

My dad and mom lived in Chicago in the ’30s.  They were young and, from what I heard them tell when I was a kid, they had a fine old time.

Good Year Blimp “Vigilant”

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The Good Year Blimp “Valiant” NC-11A.  Built in 1929, it was wrecked when it ran into a mountainside near Piedmont AL on November 22 (or 20), 1930.  No one was injured.  The car and fins were used to build the “Columbia”, which lifted off in Akron OH in 1931.  It encountered devastating winds while attempting to land at Queens Airport in New York on February 12, 1932.  The mechanic on board died when the aircraft shifted and dropped him 50 feet into a gravel pit.  The pilot survived.

The reason I mention all this is the noting of the 1930 census in the Chamber puff piece on the back.  Because of the Great Depression, there was a great political need to find out the extent of unemployment, so the results were hurried out.  I doubt if the Chamber of Commerce of St. Pete would have had the information quoted before the second quarter of 1931.  This picture was taken in the summer of 1930 (can’t tell from the vegetation, since the picture was hand colored at the printing plant, and, by gum, it’s always summer in St. Pete, I’ve heard) and, by the time this card was published, the blimp was long gone.

 

Downtown Bristol TN/VA

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I’ve been mulling over this card for several weeks.  It bothers me.  I grant that it is a picture taken by the legendary Kelly & Green in Bristol. There’s an embossed “K&G 1931” either on the original negative or on the original print.    The EKKP around the “PLACE STAMP HERE” square makes this a Real Photo card printed sometime between 1904 and 1950, when this paper stock was discontinued.  The rest of the back style seems consistent with a 1930s production date (Real Photos are essentially one-offs).

As is typical with camera lenses of the 30s, the focus gets soft around the edges, but it quite crisp in the middle. ( That’s a fake State Line, by the way.  It was drawn in on the negative)  However, on the card itself, the focus is tight to where State Street goes over the hill past the railroad tracks.

The blurring on the car in the foreground doesn’t bother me too much. It may have been veering to avoid that dude standing in the middle of the street with a camera on a tripod.

It’s the clean back that bothers me.  Yet, Real Photos are printed on a higher quality paper than a regular postcard and, if it was done by K&G, it was properly washed after fixing.  If it has been kept separate from any other degrading element (like acidic paper of a photo album), it could very well be in this good condition.

So, I’m 90% sure it’s real.  Still, there’s that other 10%.