OK, so maybe the Oscars are over, but who doesn’t use that Sally Field quote — or at least want to use it? I think we all want to feel that way (even if our quote is a bit inaccurate; her actual gushing statement was, “…you like me, right now, you like me!”) and thanks to this Collectors’ Quest blog, I’m definitely feelin’ it.
Awhile ago, a reader named Donna contacted me — I’m assuming it had something to do with this post (or one like it) because this is what she wrote:
I have a 2 scrap books of cards my grandmother kept, one made up entirely of cards received on their 50th Wedding Anniversary and her 70th birthday, both in 1948; the other is get-well cards she rcvd in 1955 (I’m amazed she knew that many people — although families were larger then…). There is also an interesting brochure for a National Parks Smoky Mountains Motor Tour: 8 days, all inclusive (train to/from Chicago, luxury hotels, guided sightseeing) for $148.56 plus tax. I think meals were included, too, but there is a menu from one of the hotels — 5-course dinners were $2.25!
Was I interested in adopting this ephemera? Was I interested?! Well yeah!
(Part of me thinks I’m just too-cool to get such a perk from blogging; another part just believes in “what comes around, goes around” — and since I sent that coffee can of toys & toy parts off to Mark Frauenfelder to become a permanent part of the Dinosaurs and Robots “museum collection”, I’m just getting what I deserve.)
Yesterday, the box arrived — and you know I must have been so excited to dash off a blog right away.
Hubby and I sat on the sofa and, like grade school children at story time, poured over each scrapbook, one at a time.
The first one we looked at was the green one; upon opening it, we discovered this charming vintage altered art page of crayon and glue images.
How cool is that?
Turning the page, the back reads: Cheerful Remembrances along the Road to Recovery after Hand Injury July 6, 1955.
How much more cool is that?!
Then there are pages of vintage get well cards from family & friends. Most are taped in, but some, especially those with pop-ups etc., are secured with those photograph corners. But turning each brittle tanned page, with the yellowed cellophane tape clinging to (if not actually holding) the old cards, I couldn’t help but wonder just how I’m going to best preserve all of this…
But I just couldn’t concentrate on that; there were pages to turn — very carefully.
About 4 or 5 pages in, another crayon illustration. It’s not quite the full page; on the margin the book’s creator wrote, “Stepping Stones Leading to Recovery after Hip Injury Oct. 12, 1955.”
Now, I don’t want to mock anyone… but another injury? Really? So soon? Apparently we weren’t the only ones to think this. Even family noted the frequent accident miles the elderly Mrs. K was putting on.
Another illustration, “Wishing Well,” by Mrs. K, followed by more old greeting cards.
I love this silly greeting card:
Because you’re ill!
I went and had by picture took…
…And THIS is just the way I look!
So won’tcha please get well?
There are lot of cards, some more memorable than others. I’ll share some at another time, I promise; but there’s so much more to see/note. There’s a whole other book yet!
The second book is actually the first book; the items in it (related to their 50th wedding anniversary, a trip to the Smokey Mountains and her 70th birthday) are dated 1948 as Donna said. (That means that Mrs. K was then 77 in 1955 when she repeatedly injured herself and used the green scrapbook to document her recoveries.)
Along with many vintage golden anniversary cards (including a substantial number of duplicates) and vintage birthday cards, there are two old blotters from Lau Shoe House. These blotters exclaim, “Congratulations …We’ve read about you …And now won’t you please read a little about us…” There’s one for Mrs. K and one for Mr. K. You can tell it’s so from the photos — photos taken right from the newspaper article about their golden wedding anniversary (and her 70th birthday). The proof is the clipped articles preserved on the first page of the scrapbook. (Now the “we’ve read about you” part makes more sense!)
Near the end is the ephemera from the trip to the Smoky Mountains that Donna mentioned. A few pages later (just shoved inside, not taped or secured), some booklets from the Biltmore Estate and some snapshots.
I must admit, I’ve not read every single pit of old paper in these two vintage scrapbooks, but I think I have a favorite piece… It’s a note from Cousin Henrietta:
Well the time is drawing near, and if our plans work out O.K. we hope to see you soon I am keeping my fingers crossed for I pulled a piece of my toe nail off and I sure have a sore toe, think there is a little infection there but am doctoring it and hoping it will be O.K.
It rained all day Monday so to-day I have to make up for lost time, wash & iron.
Will close with love,
Henry & Marguerite won’t be able to come.
Thankfully, it was only taped on the upper left-hand corner (and a bit crooked too), so I could flip it gently to read the back. But you can click and read the toenail part off the scan, if you don’t believe me. (Like I’d make that up!)
Like I said, I haven’t read everything in these two old books; but it’s going to take something pretty spectacular to beat-out a pulled-off piece of toe nail story.
Thanks, Donna, for making my weekend! In fact, this was probably the coolest thing I got all February. Just awesome.