IT'S LYNNY KANSAS
DON'T LET THE RUBY SLIPPERS,
OR THE DOROTHY INSPIRED NICKNAME
FOOL YOU., THERE'S NO PLACE LIKE HOME,
BUT TRAVELING IS FUN.
I have always been interested in history, and anyone who knows me knows what a massive sentimentalist I am. Family history is particularly interesting to me, I love discovering little things that make me go "wow"! My Mum passed away in 2014 in the UK, after living for 50 years in the same cottage in Dunham Massey, Cheshire. She left behind some interesting items, photos, cards, etc that she had "saved," this in itself fascinated me, wish I could ask why she chose to keep the things she did. Perhaps I am like my Mum in more ways than one, because instead of tossing them, I stuffed them into a suitcase and brought back home to Virginia so I could take a closer look. I briefly went through them initially, but not in any great detail, and they have been sitting in the cupboard, waiting for me. Just recently, I decided to take a closer look (have to admit that this was spurred on by watching an episode of Marie Kondo's Tidying Up!!) and discovered a bag full of postcards that she had kept. Upon looking even closer, I found that some of these postcards were very old, the oldest dating back to 1905!! Yes, you read that correctly, 1905!!
I went through the pile and discovered cards from 1906, 1908, 1909, 1910, the 1920s and 1930s, There is a gap from the 1940s to the 1960's, but then they start again in the 1970s and the 1980s. Some of the names on the cards I recognised as family members, others I have no clue as to who these people were. There was even a card that I had sent to my parents from Cyprus in 1989 which upon reading brought back many memories and made me smile. A lot of the cards were just blank, obviously momentos in lieu of a photograph from various holidays or trips.
A Happy Christmas message on a postcard fr0m 1906.
I particularly loved this postcard from 1908 wishing my Grandad, John Willie Brundrett a Happy New Year and telling him to be a good boy. He would have been 4 years old in 1908.
As I read through the cards, I was fascinated by so many things. The writing style, some quite hard to read. When was the biro invented?!! A lot clearly is written with an ink pen. The fact that these postcards were used for just quick brief messages, more or less saying, "we are ok," or just a quick wish for a Happy Easter, Birthday or Christmas. The absence of phones and other means of communication we take so much for granted today clearly means these cards were a lifeline for families and friends to stay in touch.
Another big take away, particularly from the really old cards, is that they have very minimal addresses, no postcodes. The postman obviously knew everyone on his round. Then there are the stamps!! Because these cards are so old and span an entire century practically, I spied British postage stamps depicting images of 3 Kings and 1 Queen.
King George V was on the throne in 1905, so the cards from 1905 to 1930 show his image. There is a gap in the postcard collection from 1930, until a postcard dated 1937, but this particular card stopped me in my tracks. In January 1936, King Edward VIII came to the throne upon the death of his Father, George V. This was the unfortunate Edward who decided to abdicate the British throne so he could marry his love, the American divorcee, Mrs. Wallis Simpson. He abdicated in December 1936, so why is his stamp on a card dated 1st July 1937? After a bit of research, I discovered that the post office could not bring into production new stamps so quickly after the abdication, this would take a few months. So, despite King George VI, our current Queen's father, being on the throne in 1937, the Edward VIII stamps were still in use. By 1938, all is well, and King George VI has his stamps!! The cards from the 1970s and 1980s obviously have the current Queen, Elizabeth II.
Amazing to see a stamp showing the image of King Edward VIII who abdicated the British Throne.
Particularly fond of this card from 1939 as it was sent to my Mum wishing her a Happy 10th Birthday from her Uncle Jim, Auntie Flo and their twin boys Keith and Roy.
As I mentioned earlier, there were family names I recognised, but this particular one caught my attention and my imagination, as I have no clue as to who this lady is or what relationship, if any, she had to my family. Her name is Mrs. Dainty. Was she a family friend, and family member? I have no clue. The age of these cards means that these must have been kept by my Great Grandparents possibly, and then my Grandma took them, and on down to my Mum who probably had no idea who this lady was either, but she kept the cards anyway. Dated from 1938 and 1939 these cards, addressed to a Mrs. Dainty, "Park Hill," The Firs, Bowdon, Cheshire really had me fascinated. This address is close to where I grew up, so I know the area. A Google map search shows the street, but I couldn't pinpoint the actual house, as there is no house number, just a name, "Park Hill." This street has some pretty big old houses, so it was a quite well-to-do area.
I even did a search on Ancestry.com to see if I could find out more about Mrs. Dainty, maybe a family connection. The only thing I could find was an entry in the 1939 UK census showing that she did indeed live in the house. Mrs. Maria Dainty was born on 10th April 1849, so she was an old lady of 90 by 1939, she is referred to as Grandma in some of the cards which appear to be from her Granddaughter Anne. She passed away on 18th February 1942. She lived in the house with a couple by the name of Davies, George, and Annie, who are in their 50's. He lists his occupation on the census as "Minister of Religion. What relation they are, if any to Maria, I have no clue. You really are a puzzle Mrs. Dainty!!
It's all really interesting. This card from 1977 was sent by my Mum to my Dad, myself and my sister. All I can think is that she had gone on a coach trip holiday with my Nana, who was a widow in 1977.
This one made me smile a lot too. A card to my parents from their dear friends, and Mum's distant cousin Dolly and her husband Bob, who were clearly having a great time in Scarborough.
And finally, the card I sent to my parents from Cyprus in 1989. We were staying at the Pefkos Hotel in Limassol, which was run by Phytos and his family. Lots of the British Airways staff had gone there, as had my parents, so Phytos was very welcoming to us. Our son Martin was around 18 months old at the time. Blast those Brandy Sours!!!
The above is just a sample of what I found, a lot of the cards in the bag did not have clear dates, or the stamps had been taken off, maybe for a stamp album collection somewhere. To see the above, and more all in date order, pleaseclick here, to go to a dedicated page.
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