Victorian Prank 96 Years In The Making
Here’s my latest eBay acquisition – a wonderful 96 year old postcard featuring currently 340 year old Van Pelt Manor (aka Van Pelt Mansion and Van Pelt Homestead) located at 18th Ave & 82nd St. in Brooklyn.
Ethics of publishing other people photographs and letters are rather questionable to me. This seems to be a gray area. For instance I feel that many posts in found_objects, foundphotos and vintagephoto communities of photos that were ripped up and thrown out, or of embarrassing nature, or personal letters overstep some ethical guidelines. But on the other hand I enjoy them nevertheless.
I don’t think that the writing on this postcard could likely hurt or embarrass anyone, so I decided that I’ll publish it.
It came from someone at 182 Garfield place. A little note on the right says “look under the stamp”.
On the back it says:
New York is a great place, we are “Forty five minutes from Broadway”. Do you see “Kitty” very often. She ran away and never did say good-bye to me. Pump up your Airship and sail over to see me some evening soon.
Youre “Soda Water Tessie”.
The stamp was still attached. The mystery of what was under the stamp was solved rather quickly : being a stamp collector I know how to properly take stamps off. My wonderful espresso machine provided some steam and I carefully peeled back the 1 cent green Ben Franklin (Scott Catalogue # 300). “Was it hard to get off?” – the little prank that “Soda Water Tessie” pulled on Mr. Ray Feathers of Toledo, OH finally saw light of day 96 years later.
I wonder, did Mr. Feathers actually own an airship?
P.S. Taking stamps off is generally a capitally bad idea. Dang early collectors liked to steam off stamps so much that we have very few surviving stamps on envelopes (which are often referred to as “postal history”). “Postal history” items usually sell with a high multiplier to the value of every stamp on the envelope.