• Health,  Logistics,  Thomas Gray Haile subcollection

    The world was made for only two

    Thomas Gray Haile subcollection, cards 49, 69, 45, and 67 Madge in January, 1907. These next four cards all date from the latter third of January, 1907. At this time, Thomas was evidently either in Nashville or having his mail directed there–specifically to the Cumberland T&T for whom (I’m guessing) he worked. Maud sent three from Gainesboro, and one from Oneida. First up, a couple by the seaside. They appear rather pleased with themselves (from my perspective). Received your card tonight and was sure glad. Wish you could be here tonight have been waiting all the afternoon on [unclear] from being lonely. Wont be down the 22nd. Be good. Madge”…

  • Social,  Thomas Gray Haile subcollection

    I’m in trouble and wish you were here

    Thomas Gray Haile subcollection, cards 34, 68, 64, 65 First up, another flower card — and a cryptic message for us. Clearly there have been tempests of some kind somewhere. It’s easy to speculate, but best to be cautious. For whatever reason, this card indicates Madge was concerned about what Thomas’s other correspondents might report. Quite apart from that, her last line sets up an interesting offer wherein her truthfulness (by which she likely meant fidelity) was potentially contingent upon his trusting her to be true. “Hello Trust me regardless of what others may write you. Received your card. Please write often and be good and I’ll be true if…

  • Presentation/Appearance,  Social,  Thomas Gray Haile subcollection

    Be good and write often

    Thomas Gray Haile subcollection, cards 31, 4, 39, and 35 Introducing Madge. This is the first card from her chronologically, based on postmarks (unless one of the illegible postmarks turns out to be earlier). It’s addressed to Thomas in Gainesboro, Tennessee. Later cards were addressed to him elsewhere in Tennessee (Oneida, Nashville, Flynn’s Lick) and in Oklahoma (Kiowa). The number of cards she sent him, and her ability to direct them to different locales, suggests these were part of an active correspondence. The card itself is rather pretty and in decent shape for the collection (i.e. signs minimal mold/water damage). Her handwriting is fairly legible (this was not always the…

  • General Info,  Presentation/Appearance,  Social,  Thomas Gray Haile subcollection

    Valentines, union suits, and wrestling

    Thomas Gray Haile subcollection, cards 36, 55, 167, and 95 First up, a nearly blank slate ripe for speculation. This could be from Madge–but equally might not be. There is very little to go on. With respect to the sender’s identity, we have the choice of the card, which suggests a romantic connection, and the name and address of the recipient. This is the kind of card Madge generally chose (i.e. romantic, as the following posts will demonstrate), but . . . the handwriting on the card isn’t close enough for me to incline that way (much as I’d like to). Further, the card was addressed to Mr. T. Gray…

  • Collecting,  Miscellaneous,  Thomas Gray Haile subcollection

    Good and True and Truthful

    Thomas Gray Haile subcollection, overview Time to switch to a new set of postcards! The Haile cards. These, too, date from around 1907-1908, with some later cards. Nevertheless, the Haile cards differ in many respects from the Katheryn McMahon album. The Haile cards don’t constitute a coherent album collection. Oh, they were in an old postcard album when I got them . . . but mixed in with other unrelated cards. In short what I’ll be focusing on for the next month or two (or three) is a sub-collection: cards that at some point became part of some one’s collection. Was that someone one person? I don’t know. Were they…

  • Collecting,  Katheryn McMahon Newton Album,  Travel

    Numerical proof of love?

    Katheryn McMahon Newton album, an initial chronological and numerical assessment For about five months, I’ve been posting about the cards contained in the album and referring to an eventual chronological assessment. This is–and isn’t–it. It is, because it’s what I’m providing; but it also isn’t, because I don’t promise it addresses all the issues I mentioned in earlier posts. There’s only so much I can do now. I expect this particular album and assortment of cards to play a strong role as I analyze and write about early post cards in bulk and in specific, but at this point I’m still processing cards and getting ideas (and sometimes having those…

  • General Info,  Katheryn McMahon Newton Album,  Logistics,  Social,  Travel

    Daddy dear and sweetheart valentines

    Katheryn McMahon Newton album, additional materials Before we go to the additional materials, a correction regarding a recent post. When discussing card 127, I somehow leapt to associate references to the “U.S. Ex. agent” as exports. I’m not sure what I was thinking. At any rate, this was far more likely a U.S. Express agent — i.e. a firm that he had arranged to ship materials to Katheryn. A precursor / antecedent to UPS and/or FedEx. Especially given one of the letters below! The album contained two letters and three cards when it reached me. These all date from later-on. The cards on the left and right are signed from…

  • General Info,  Katheryn McMahon Newton Album,  Social,  Weather

    An ordinary park bench to the casual observer

    Katheryn McMahon Newton album, cards 130-133 The last cards in the album! There are a few non-cards for the next post, then on to a chronological overview–and we’ll be off to our next set of cards (I’m looking forward to introducing Madge to the world). But I’m getting ahead of myself. First up, one of the few items in the album that affirm Katheryn married Fred. In this case, his mother (name alas unknown right now) sent them a postcard which means I have their address in Seattle as of late 1908. If they were still there (or nearby) in 1910 this may help locate them in the census. (FYI:…

  • Collecting,  Katheryn McMahon Newton Album,  Leather Post Cards,  Social

    The customary expression appropriate in a case of this kind

    Katheryn McMahon Newton album, cards 126-129 For today, four cards from the album that are not images of places (or flowers). Whoever went through the album plucking out cards likely left them behind as of little value. In terms of inscriptions, three of the four have something on them with two speaking to Fred and Katheryn’s relationship. This one, for instance, dates from when Fred was courting Katheryn. The postmark is hard to read, but places this on/around the 25th of July, 1907. He addressed her as Kittie, as this came before the shift to Katheryn. He added lines to the front of the card, affirming the printed warning to…

  • Katheryn McMahon Newton Album,  Puzzles,  Social,  Travel

    Now am to blame for being stuck on the West

    Katheryn McMahon Newton album, cards 123-125 Fred evidently had a very good meal at Hotel Tacoma. How do we know? He wrote Katheryn about it in pretty as much detail as one can squeeze on a postcard. The color came through quite nicely on this in reality. There are places of misalignment, but the contrast between the green, gold/yellow, and brown shoes up a lot better in person than in the photo. I’m not sure where the “Uncle Dud” came from. Probably an inside joke or family joke between the two. Any other suggestions are welcome. On the reverse, Fred detailed a feast. How many courses? How many of them…

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