As I sit here today waiting for another storm to hit, out of gas, and dreading a cold windy walk to the Post Office, I find myself browsing through some charming old postcards. I recently purchased a very large collection of vintage postcards.
The majority are the vibrant linen-type cards that were so popular in the 1930s and 1940s.
They are in perfect, as new condition, and were mostly produced by the Asheville Postcard Company. Lamar Campbell LeCompte began the Asheville Postcard and Pennant
Company in 1910. The decade between 1900 and 1910 was a period of
governmental deregulation for the postcard industry. Labeling
requirements were relaxed to allow the application of the brief term
"postcard" and now also permitted was a divided back for full sender and
addressee information. These more liberal standards allowed
entrepreneurs to explore innumerable possibilities for more visually
stunning postcard photos, comics, and drawings. L.C. LeCompte had a keen
eye for the natural beauty of the south with its' many parks,
monuments, and tourist spots. Even the untrained eye can perceive the uncompromising quality with
which the photographs for the Asheville Postcard company images were
The early postcard industry had much to do with the creation
of the tourism industry. The steam locomotive, the
automobile, then air travel created more affordable and expeditious travel opportunities
for the average citizen.
Last weekend, The New York Times Magazine featured a new coffee table book of absolutely gorgeous antique and vintage European postcards (pictured below) from the life long collection of Leonard Lauder. Click here to see more photos and the complete article.
Some of my favorite postcards from the Asheville Postcard Company are the comic ones pictured below. They are a bit dated and, in some cases, offensive, but they have a certain charm and the graphics are just so, so good. I will be selling them all winter at the Brooklyn Flea at Hanson Place.