How many people do you know who can say they appeared on a commercially mass produced postcard that had at least two printings? I had that good fortune.
In 1978 I was a Petroleum Geologist working for Amerada Hess Oil Company in Tulsa, Okla. Our office was on the southeast corner of 6th Street and Denver just a few blocks from Tulsa’s newly completed downtown Pedestrian Mall. The city had closed several downtown streets to automobile traffic and built a complex of fountains and walkways in hopes of reviving the downtown district. (It did not work; by 2005 they were tearing out the fountains and returning the streets to automobile traffic.)
One day one of the secretaries in the office came back from lunch grinning from ear to ear and showed me a postcard of the new Pedestrian Mall she had just purchased. There I was in the center of the postcard, striding toward the camera in tan pants and a white shirt (top photo). I did not remember being photographed on the mall and I was not aware that a postcard was to be made with me in it. It was a big hit in the office and for several days I was the butt of many jokes because on the postcard I appear to be eyeing the woman walking next to me.
I immediately went out and bought a number of the cards and sent them to all my family and friends. I also kept a few for myself. The postcard was published by Storer’s Cards of Tulsa as number 54623-D and was printed by Dexter Press in West Nyack, N.Y. It has an overall pinkish cast and the dress on one of the women in the background has obviously been hand colored magenta to add an extra splash of color.
As time passed I left Tulsa and worked in other cities, but when I formed my own geological consulting company I moved back to Tulsa. Because of my interest in collecting postcards from Vincennes, Ind. where I was born, I joined the T-Town Postcard Club in Tulsa and became their webmaster (visit the club Web page at http://www.tulsapostcardclub.50megs.com). At one meeting in 2004 member Elizabeth Pruitt approached me with several identical cards she had recently purchased from a dealer’s junk box. They were a newer printing of the card featuring the Pedestrian Mall and me (bottom card).
These cards were slightly different. They were still published by Storer’s Cards of Tulsa, but this version was numbered S-120 and was printed by Colorscans in Australia. The picture has truer colors and it is framed with more sky and less mall, so my feet are cut off. The lady in the background whose dress was magenta on the first card is now back in her original white dress. Elizabeth gave me her small supply of this version of the card, and later I was able to buy a few more from a dealer at the Tulsa Fairgrounds flea market for 25¢ each.
When I decided to write this article I wanted to visit Storer’s Cards but I discovered they had been bought out by Prairie Production Co. in 1993. I found an interview given by Carter Marsh, son of the owner of Prairie Production Co., in the Tulsa World newspaper for June 26, 1996. He said: “some postcards were developed 15 to 20 years ago when the company was called Storer’s Cards, and new graphics have been added so they can continue to be top sellers.”
This prompted me to contact Prairie Production Co. to see if my postcard was still in production.
Carter told me: “I remember the card and we kept it as part of our line for a while in the ’90s. I couldn’t tell you offhand if we reprinted it, but I seem to remember that we didn’t because it was looking dated in terms of apparel styles, etc. Quite the same way automobiles in postcard pictures show the age of the original photos.”
So there was probably never a third printing of my postcard by Prairie Production Co. But if you happen to find one I would be thrilled to see it.
The moral is simple. Don’t ignore the current postcards from your city, you may be on one.
– Paul Roales
Record attendance at Post Card Club Show
At the April 2 Kaaterskill Post Card Club Show, held in Kingston, N.Y., the club was thrilled to see record attendance. There were 230 admissions, way up from the last several shows, and believed to be an all-time high for the club.
Club President Frank Almquist felt that moving the show (a year ago) had finally paid off – the Midtown Neighborhood Center on Broadway in Kingston offers much more room than the previous hotel venue. The show is able to accommodate many more dealers, and customers do not feel jostled or cramped.
Show committee members offered additional reasons for the increased attendance. Joyce Granger, show publicity chairwoman, felt that the increased advertising as well as a number of free listings, helped spread the word about the show to new attendees.
Club secretary John Duda offered the opinion that the great weather that day helped. Attendance at the show in April 2005 was severely curtailed by major flooding in the region.
Show contract coordinator Gene McCormick felt that the increased number of dealers, including some new to the show, contributed to the increased attendance. Attendees at a show are always looking for new faces behind the dealer tables.
Whatever the reasons, the club was quite happy with the results and hopes to build on this success at the fall show, scheduled for Sunday, Nov. 5, at the Center, which is located at 467 Broadway in Kingston.
Editor’s note: I asked for this story from the Kaaterskill Post Card Club because they noted in their newsletter that they had good attendance at the show. I thought that some other clubs might pick up some tips from them to increase the attendance at their shows. Thanks, Joe Duda, for sending the information along!
A Souvenir Post Card Party
Taken from the book: Dame Curtsey’s Book of Novel Entertain-ments for Every Day in the Year – copyright 1909.
A SOUVENIR POST CARD PARTY
Nearly every town of any size has its own individual postals, and in this day and generation every one is the recipient of many of these charming reminders of travel, both at home and abroad. Something original in the way of entertaining for either dinner, luncheon, or afternoon was given by the hostess when she planned this affair.
The rooms were decorated with postals fastened together by holes punched in the comers and ribbons run through them. Panels were formed in this way and made a most effective decoration. Cards were stuck in picture frames, placed on tables, on the mantels, and every spot where they would attract attention. These cards were topics of conversation which was very animated. “Do you remember?” and “that reminds me” were expressions heard on all sides.
Invitations were sent out on local souvenir cards. Then for place cards at this luncheon the hostess had mailed cards to the guests, ten in number, addressing them to her own house number. By these they found their places at the table. Each one was asked to come prepared to relate some incident of travel, either humorous, startling or pathetic. “A vote was taken as to the best story in each class, and souvenirs were awarded, inexpensive articles which the hostess had collected with this party in mind. Souvenir spoons were used, and the table linen came from Ireland.
The menu consisted of grape fruit, creamed potatoes served in ramekins, whole wheat bread, cherry salad made by replacing the pits of California cherries with hazel nuts, serving it on head lettuce leaves with a rich mayonnaise dressing, and cheese wafers; ice cream was served in halves of cantaloupe with small cakes. The Bonbons were in dress suit boxes, and the almonds in miniature bandboxes which were given the guests as favors. Iced tea was the beverage with a bit of lemon and candied cherry in it.
– submitted by Carole Steele, “Taken word for word from the book – not my own words!”
WARD PARKER 1913-2005
On April 29, 2006 a memorial reception was held for Ward and Merceina Parker at the St. Louis Tennis Hall of Fame located at the Triple A Golf and Tennis Club in Forest Park.
Merceina dominated women’s tennis for over two decades and was inducted into the St. Louis Tennis Hall of Fame in 1991, in its second year of existence. Ward won over 100 St. Louis municipal titles, more than anyone else ever has. He was inducted into the St. Louis Tennis Hall of Fame in 1995 so it was appropriate that the memorial service be held there.
Ward passed away on Oct. 13, 2005 in Houston, Texas, one month to the day after Merceina died. Ward was born in St. Louis and graduated from Roosevelt High School. He received his B.S. and M.S. degrees from the University of Wisconsin.
The Gateway Postcard Club issued its first postcard honoring a member to commemorate Word’s tennis accomplishments. Ward is shown with the famous St. Louis Post-Dispatch Weatherbird, drawn by Dan Martin.
Ward competed in and promoted tennis most of his life and was active in the Senior Olympics, winning numerous medals.
He had a lifelong interest in St. Louis history, and especially postal history. He was a member of the Gateway Postcard Club and the 1904 World’s Fair Society where he often shared his knowledge through lectures and exhibits.
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