Tag Archives: Vintage Postcards

Three Views And A Dollop Of History

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You get three views of Huddersfield for the price of one on this vintage postcard I acquired the other day, but as with all postcards from one hundred years or more ago, you get an awful lot of history as well. Those familiar with Huddersfield, will probably recognise the three views: most of the buildings featured are still standing today. The General Post Office is no longer the post office, but the building still exists and is directly across the street from the current post office which was built in 1914. The view of Church Street was a little confusing until I realised that it is, in fact, Cross Church Street, and that is clearly St Peters Parish Church at the far end.
Turn the card over and the potential interest is maintained. The postmark date is unreadable, but every indication would be that the card was sent at the height of the postcard boom in the period 1903-1907. The recipient was a certain Miss L A Kiddell-Monroe in Clacton-on-Sea and that name, date and location suggests that this was probably the sister of the famous children’s illustrator Joan Kiddell-Monroe who was born in Clacton in 1908.

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The Last Chara To Dewsbury

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Whenever you look at an old photograph of a familiar scene you become aware of content; the very scale and detail of what is going on. This is Brighouse in the early 1920s: there are shops, there are men waiting for the Black Bull to open and there is a charabanc waiting to trundle you off to Dewsbury Market (fare 2/- return). It is busy, it is lived in, it is a cobbled metropolis.
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The Black Bull is still there but now it is flanked by some concrete conveniences and a Wilko wall. And the last “chara” for Dewsbury left a long time ago.
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Dear Elsie, Excuse me not writing to before now. I will send you a letter later but with the card you will see I have not forgotten you. I got your letter and card was very nice and thank very much. Well my Dear friend how are you keeping I hope you are well. I am very well myself. Do excuse me Elsie Dear not writing before now. I have been thinking about you Elsie Dear all the same. Well Dear I will stop. With love I remain your loving friend, Edith xxxxxx

 

Elsie Shuker of Church Street, St Georges in Shropshire was 28 years old when she received this postcard from her friend Edith in Brighouse. Perhaps they knew each other from being in domestic service together? In the 1939 Register, Elsie Shuker – who was then 44 years old – is simply listed as “Daily Girl, Domestic Duties”.

The Musical Boy Scouts

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This trio of musicians appears on the front of a vintage post card which was sent to a Mr E A Hopkins in Cardiff in October 1913. The message on the reverse is as follows:-

Lydney, 18/10/13
Dearest,  These are poor cards. The boy at the back is the cleverest, he plays cello alright. Best love, Mame xxxxxx
Lydney is a small town in Gloucestershire near the Forest of Dean, and Mame’s “dearest” lived some 50 miles away in Cardiff.

The Singer Trio – who were also known as “The Musical Boy Scouts” – toured the variety halls and music halls of Britain in the early part of the twentieth century. In an advert in the variety newspaper “The Era” in November 1913, they described themselves as follows in an advert for tour dates:
“SINGER TRIO : Wonderful musicians. 15 stringed instruments (not toys) played (not played with). Great success everywhere. Wanted. Known at liberty Oct 17, 24.

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NORTHAMPTON DAILY ECHO 21 December 1914
The following year brought the outbreak of the First World War, but the Singer Trio were still touring the theatres, although now they were having to share the billing with moving picture shows about the horrors of war – “a beautifully coloured production”!

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MANSFIELD REPORTER AND SUTTON TIMES  11 September 1914
There are frequent mentions of the Trio in the stage and variety press until September 1915, after which all mention of them ceases. One can only assume that the “musical boy scouts” were eventually drawn into that most tragic of twentieth century performances – the Great War.
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