Friday, January 6, 2017

Skies, Postcards, and 1950 Again!

Welcome to John's Island in 2017, our 7th year in the blogosphere. Thank you so much to all of you who left us the New Year's greetings and other comments on our last post.

Skies ...

The skies around Seattle are getting off to an interesting start for the new year. After clouds created a beautiful sunset on the first, we've had a blast of cold, clear air that has created its own kind of beauty.

Jan 1st  4:27 PM

Jan 1st  4:32 PM
Jan 2nd  4:20 PM

Space Needle Sunrise
Jan 4th  8:07 AM
Clear, cold morning!

Jan 4th  4:29 PM
Sunset at 236° WSW on this date.
Looking over Puget Sound from Seattle
Southern portion Olympic Mtn Range far distance at right.
This is as clear as we are going to get for a sunset.

We are linking up with Skywatch Friday where many bloggers share their sky photos. Well worth checking out and thanks to Yogi♪♪♪ for hosting the linkup!


The theme this week at Maria's Postcards for the Weekend is "trains/trams". Trains make up one of the largest categories of old postcards in our collection, so we were delighted to see this theme. Thanks to Maria for hosting the linkup!

The Overland Limited --
Chicago, Omaha, San Francisco
Published by
The Chicago Milwaukee and St Paul Railway
We found it interesting the way the sender wrote over the image on the postcard. With vintage postcards it's not so common to see writing on the image but it captured our attention here. However, all we can read is Best Regards my "??? ???" R.C.W.  Can you make out the question marks?

A Private Mailing Card
Postmarked October 12, 1905
(No ZIP code needed!)
In postal history, Private Mailing Cards lasted for a relatively short time, 1898 - 1901. Here is a little history from the Smithsonian Institution Archives -- "On May 19, 1898, Congress passed an act allowing private printing companies to produce postcards with the statement 'Private Mailing Card, Authorized by Act of Congress of May 19, 1898.' [Prior to this Act only the government could produce postcards.] The words 'Private Mailing Card' distinguished privately printed cards from government printed cards.  Messages were not allowed on the address side of the private mailing cards, as indicated by the words 'This side is exclusively for the Address,' or slight variations of this phrase. However, if the front of the postcard did not contain an image, it could bear a message. If the front did have an image, then a small space was left on the front for a message. Many of the private mailing cards also contained the phrase 'Postal Card—Carte Postale,' which indicated that it was allowed to enter the international mail system." Just about all of that history is illustrated on our card above.

The Colorado Special
Chicago - Omaha - Denver
Published by
The Chicago Milwaukee and St Paul Railway
On this card, mailed in 1913, we are hoping some of our followers can help us translate the message portion. It is definitely a foreign language, but we are not sure which one. Can you help?

Postmarked February 14, 1913
One Cent Postage
It's 1950 All Over Again!

Well, sort of. Although some have said the new political agenda is to make it 1950 again in the USA, we are talking about the CALENDAR.  Yes, 2017 is the same as 1950 when it comes to the calendar and the way the days are aligned. The evidence is in the image below, our 1950 wall calendar from one of the transcontinental railroads!

Railroad Give-away
1950 Wall Calendar
Chicago, Milwaukee, St Paul and Pacific Railway
AKA The Milwaukee Road

The company was the Chicago, Milwaukee, St Paul, and Pacific Railway, and the calendar was published in celebration of "Opening Our Second Century". As is fairly common with wall calendars, it showed three months at a time and the pages were to be torn off as the year progressed. Our favorite part of the calendar is the image at the top showing one of their passenger trains roaring down the tracks. These calendars are popular with collectors and it is fairly rare to find one in good condition with all the pages still intact.

Closing thought ...
There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.
     W. Somerset Maugham


  1. Mine was a sunrise this week though not as impressive as your sunsets. Great postacrds you showed this week with some grant trains on

  2. I can't make the writing out on the post card.
    Wow some beautiful sky pictures.
    Like the old calendar with the train on it.

  3. Nice sunset pictures, for sure. It looks like some kind of pet name, in quotes, like maybe "Jinni Pandi"???

  4. The language seems to be Finnish (I recognize 'terve', which means 'hello' / 'health'). And confirms this, that is, the first two words 'Täällä Chicagossa' mean 'Here in Chicago', and 'kaunis kun kesälla' must be 'beautiful as summer'. But I am unable to read the rest well enough to type it correct in the online translator.. :-)
    Sure there ust be blog readers who are fluent in Finnish!?!

  5. Amazing sky shots.I really like the Space Needle with the sun behind it.Enjoy the weekend and make sure to get more photos. :)

  6. Postcards and sunsets. I like them both and you have some great examples in your post. So were these brief notes on post cards texting in those days?

  7. Great cards and I liked the history of private mailing cards - thanks.

  8. My trip to Seattle has been postponed again! I'm pining for watching these skies in person ... Perhaps this isn't the "right time"...

    I'm happy that you like our theme this weekend! Thanks for sharing that postcard with the photo almost written all over. It's puzzling indeed why someone would do that! Thanks for sharing the history for Private Mailing Card, too! Now I understand more on why I see these phrases "for correspondence" and "for address only" on opposite sides at the back of some postcards.

  9. Hello, gorgeous sky shots. The colors are stunning. Happy weekend!

  10. I like the angle of the calendar photo, looks a magnificent beast. Vibrant sunsets, ours have been pale pink and purple recently, almost watercolour skies.

  11. "It's 1950 All Over Again!

    Well, sort of. Although some have said the new political agenda is to make it 1950 again in the USA, we are talking about the CALENDAR. Yes, 2017 is the same as 1950 when it comes to the calendar and the way the days are aligned."

    Isn't that weird?? What a coincidence. The 1950's sound pretty good to me. Of course, my frame of reference is Happy Days, which was made in the 1970's about the 1950's. I hope poodle skirts make a comeback.

    I wish I could translate that language! My guess is something Nordic. It seems to have those double dots over some of the letters that make me want to say Haagen Das. I also notice the address is just a name and a city. Haha! Imagine that these days.

  12. I love ancient trains.And modern ones!

  13. Hi John, your posts are always so nice! I haven't been commenting for several weeks, thanks for your kind comment.
    Wishing you a very Happy New Year.
    Best regards from Turin.

  14. Really great cards John. I'm with Heleen about the card being Finnish. I don't "know" it, but it has the feel of the language.

    Did not know about the differences between government cards and private interesting. Thanks for posting! I have so much to learn about postcards!

  15. I *love* the colors in the January 1st shot! Very beautiful picture.

    I also really like the colors on the Colorado special card. Very neat that it is in a foreign language. And I enjoyed your history on the government mailing cards.

  16. Nothing is as majestic as the skies. So evident in your photos. It seems there's never a bad shot of the heavens, right?


Questions, Compliments, and/or Suggestions: If you ask a question, please check back here, on the blog, for an answer within, usually, a day or two. Thank you in advance for compliments. I’ll try to keep an open mind about suggestions. All comments are moderated. Please note: Comments with active links will not be published. Comments with an inactive link are probably okay.

Mostly Mt Rainier

Back to Mt. Rainier 2024 ... At the entrance gate the Ranger provided a map of the Park and a sheet of info for Spring 2024.  I was careful ...