My Fair Lady Wishes You A Happy Christmas!

Sent with no message, December 22, 1909

This fair lady sends greetings for a Happy Christmas. Seven year old Donald C. Minor received this card at Christmastime 1909, and though the painting is not signed, I believe it to be another Ellen H. Clapsaddle card.  Why?

  1. An embossed frame of gold holds the portrait of a sweet young lady, hair swept stylishly up and under a hat bedecked with fresh roses.  A ruffled collar frames a face full of youthful innocence.  Such a joyful illustration of Victorian youth is characteristic of Ellen H. Clapsaddle’s work.
  2. Turning the card over, I discovered this:
  3. The International Art Publishing Company was established in 1895, merging companies formerly run by Messrs. Wolf and Samuel Garre.  Their most prolific artist was Ellen H. Clapsaddle, as I discovered while researching Skating to Greet YOU!, a card also printed in 1909.

Until a collector convinces me otherwise, I stand on my judgement: My Fair Lady is a Clapsaddle original.  Happy Christmas!

Happy Thanksgiving Greetings: (almost) Wordless Wednesday with Vintage Postcard #5

This series digitizes a set of postcards collected by my grandfather Donald C. Minor from 1906-1910. Born in Greene County, Pennsylvania in 1902, Donald was the youngest son, youngest grandson and youngest cousin of the Francis Marion and Mary Jane Gwynn Minor clan.  His parents, Robert and May Stephenson Minor, sent cards from their travels; his older sister, Helen, sent cards while she was attending school in nearby Waynesburg; aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends sent photocards and holiday greetings from all over the United States with great regularity.  The resulting Postcard Collection is both a family puzzle and a cultural window to the world of Donald Minor during the first decade of the twentieth century.

International Art Publishing Company card by Ellen H. Clapsaddle

This postcard is a signed Ellen H. Clapsaddle masterpiece, though I must admit to a being a mite bit confused by the subject matter – why would the sight of a child luring a wild turkey to the Thanksgiving table be considered a suitable way to extend Thanksgiving greetings?  In spite of this bemusement, I love the cards lush details and vivid colors. Born in 1866 New York, Ellen Clapsaddle was trained as an artist and was one of the few women who actually found a commercial outlet for her talent. Hired by the Wolf Brothers, a subsidiary of the International Art Publishing Company, Ms. Clapsaddle was a prolific postcard artist, with over 3000 designs patented in her name.  Mr. Samuel Garre, manager of the IAPC, maintained a 1909 copyright for the painting, which was printed on postcards in their German factories. 

A neighbor, Helen Ruse, sent this card to Donald on November 19, 1910  with this message:

Dear friend, Come over and eat this turkey with us!

Best wishes for a Happy Thanksgiving!

Postcard Advent Calendar, December 22: My Fair Lady Wishes You A Happy Christmas!

Sent with no message, December 22, 1909

This fair lady sends greetings for a Happy Christmas on this ninth day of my Minor Postcard Advent Calendar.  Seven year old Donald C. Minor received this card at Christmastime 1909, and though the painting is not signed, I believe it to be another Ellen H. Clapsaddle card.  Why?

  1. An embossed frame of gold holds the portrait of a sweet young lady, hair swept stylishly up and under a hat bedecked with fresh roses.  A ruffled collar frames a face full of youthful innocence.  Such a joyful illustration of Victorian youth is characteristic of Ellen H. Clapsaddle’s work.
  2. Turning the card over, I discovered this:
  3. The International Art Publishing Company was established in 1895, merging companies formerly run by Messrs. Wolf and Samuel Garre.  Their most prolific artist was Ellen H. Clapsaddle, as I discovered while researching Skating to Greet YOU!, a card also printed in 1909.

Until a collector convinces me otherwise, I stand on my judgement: My Fair Lady is a Clapsaddle original.  Happy Christmas!