Tattered Past

Tattered Past: My ongoing journey through genealogy, history, writing, self-exploration and art. ~~~ Rita Ackerman

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Tuesdays With Rita: Postcard Collections

What is it about postcards that attracts so many of us? Whether old or new, from places we've been or places we just want to go to, many people collect these wonderful bits of ephemera.

When my daughter was little we started collecting postcards for her. Where ever we went we came home with a handful of postcards. She still has that collection and now her son is starting his own. Every so often I send the boys each a postcard just for fun and to show them where I live. Arizona is far different than Washington and it is a bit hard for them to understand the distances but they enjoy the postcards.

A couple of weeks ago the leader of the day at my writing group used old postcards she had found at antique stores as prompts. We could write about the place shown or, even more fun, was reading the messages and writing as if we were the author or the recipient of those short bits of life.

I was reminded of the postcards my Granddad Covey collected. I ended up with a small envelope of them. It is so interesting to look through them.

Harold Cecil Covey was born in Harper, Kansas on October 14, 1899. His family were farmers and some of them are still in the area. I remember him as a very quiet, solemn, and stern man. He was a barber in a very small town up until he died.

Here's one of the postcards:

 The back says "Hello Cecil, Suppose you are having a fine time now as you don't have to go to school. Come out here and we will go swimming in the river. Harry" It is addressed to Master Cecil Covey, DuQuoin, Kansas and postmarked Jerome, April 1918.

 Wilburn, Nov. 1919. "Dear Cousin, How would you like to be run over by this big roller. I am well. How are you? Herbert" Wilburn was a tiny town near Fowler where my grandma lived. They were married January 22, 1922. I never heard how they met. It's fun to speculate.

This one is dated Fowler, June 27, 1909 and is also from Herbert. I wonder how Herbert chose to send this card to Cecil or if he even really looked at it. Cecil was only 11.

Here's a few others from the same time period.

Do you have a postcard collection? Are you drawn to these wonderful bits of history?

Just as these kitties are traveling as your visit family members during the holidays ask about their postcard collections. You might come up with some surprises in your family history.

(p.s. You can click on the postcards and print them out to use in your artwork.)


  1. I do, but not as wonderful as yours. I love those traveling kitties! Thank you for sharing your postcards!

  2. What IS it about postcards that makes us collect them? I, too, have saved them through the years and love to go back & look at them.
    Thanks for this entry!

  3. it's so neat that you have postcards that were written by members of your family!

  4. I recently came across a postcard I'd written home from Girl Scout came in 1965. It was so fascinating to glimpse my younger self and to remember feeling as I did when I'd written it.

  5. These are gorgeous and I'm a collector of vintage postcards! Thanks for your sweet comment on my train. Good luck!

  6. These are great! I love the messages they wrote. thanks for sharing. And thanks for the wonderful envelope of swap items in the ROD swap. I got mine today, and your envelope was part of it. Love the lace and the sequin waste. I'm enjoying your blog.

  7. I love postcards and so enjoy when we use them as prompts at WIG. They are such snapshots into the past!

  8. This makes me want to start a collection of my own. Thank you for sharing! Oh, the traveling cats are the BEST!

  9. if you ever come to SD stop by my house you will love to see my collection, it is a big box (well i am trying to share lately, lol)


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