Wednesday, October 29, 2008

School's out

This postcard remained in my memory ever since I first saw it. We’d put it to one side with lots of other cards to look at again at a later date. The later date has come and it’s now for sale.

This is a photograph of what was left of Boulevard des Ecoles (school boulevard) in the town of Lens in the North of France. I imagine the boy in the picture is standing on what is left of his school. Lens was first bombarded in October 1914 and the town was occupied until 1918. The population of 18,000 was reduced by half. How did those people manage? Where did they go?

The town also suffered a lot of damage during world war II

Sunday, October 19, 2008

A little bird told me

One of the seagulls on this postcard is arriving in Geneva to tell everyone that Peter will soon be arriving home in Switzerland to begin his very busy retirement.

This postcard was posted in Geneva in 1902 and is in excellent condition. I have seen the same card in black and white. I prefer the colouring on this one.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

The arrival of the Americans

While I was preparing this card for auction this morning I was taken on an interesting journey through the history of U.S. WW1 uniforms. I wanted to check up on two of the hats, I wondered it they were Canadian, but no, they were worn by American soldiers. I discovered that the winter uniforms were made of wool. Very good for the winter but when it was wet they became very heavy and uncomfortable.

The Americans arrived in June 1917 and this photo was taken on July 4th at Les Invalides in Paris, which is the army museum where you can also see the tomb of Napoléon Bonaparte. Of all the people passing by do you think that anyone might possibly recognise one of these soldiers? I hope they all arrived back home safely.

Monday, October 06, 2008

The Language of stamps

Did you know that you have to be careful when you place a stamp on an envelope? This postcard was produced for a philatelic exhibition in Paris in 1941. The stamps were all real, stuck on especially for the postcard.

Here is a translation for the next time you send a love letter through the post:

Straight: You don’t love me
Upside-down: I don’t dare.
To the left: Ardent love
To the right: The beginnings of love
Horizontal right: Tenderly yours
Horizontal left: Passionately yours

Click on the postcards for a better view.