Thanks for visiting. This site will no longer be updated.

Please visit my new site.

You can find new writing, new photos at


Sunday, August 9, 2009

This Space May Be Used For Correspondance

Locals will recognize this Islam Temple now as the Alcazar Theatre in the Tenderloin.

Addressed to:

Inspector C. Grant
Chief of Detective Bureau
Washington D.C.

July 16th, 1922

Dear Noble

This is a fine Climat. Winter Clothes.

No mosquitoes. No winged
I hope you are well.

Chester R. Samson


I accidentally happened upon the Antique Paper Faire this Sunday in Golden Gate Park. I had wandered over to the park, looking for something to take photos of in the exquisite sunshine today, and boy howdy, am I ever in trouble now. I spent most of the day fanning through massive piles of old postcards of San Francisco.

I am completely hooked on these old, charming cards (those of you who know me realize that I went a little nuts reading them). As much as for the delightful images of the city's past, but also for the stories written on them. I purchased a few, and will be sharing them with you over the next days. I am enjoying these glimpses into the past so very much, seeing places in the city that I've only read about and others that are still around in another incarnation or looking just like they were at the time the postcard was sent. And mostly reading what others thought of San Francisco from many years ago. I hope you enjoy this time traveling tour, too.


The top of this card shows The Chutes, Tenth Avenue and Fulton St.
How totally cool was this water park?!!

Addressed to:

Miss Annie Burns
Los Gatos
Lost Gatos Post Office

Sept. 11. 1908

Dear Annie

I received your post card long time ago and am most ashamed to say a word about it. I put off answering and then forgot. I am well and going to school every day. The circus is in town. I expect to go Saturday that is if my Aunt don't back out. Ma don't care for Circus it makes her anxious so she's out of the question. I hope you and your mother are well.



Caption on this card reads:
Ocean Beach Pavillion and Pier from Cliff House, San Francisco, California
On the Road of a Thousand Wonders

Addressed to:

Mrs. R.R. Gillner
227 Chapman St.
Portland Oregon

June 29, 1910

Dear Fronie:

Motored out here yesterday, had refreshments at Cliff House, dined later with Hirschfelders, afternoon tea to-day with millionaires at The Fairmont.

Wish you & Rush were with us.

Having time of our life.
Well & Happy.



Card reads Chinese Telephone Office, Chinatown, San Francisco, Cal.

Addressed to:

Miss H.M. Stener
200 E-52nd
Cor Taylor
Portland Oregon

July 30, 1915 (Postmark reads World's Panama Pacific Exposition in San Francisco 1915)

Dear Hilda:

We were down in this place yesterday afternoon. Very interesting. All the Central Girls are Chinese Girls.

Say don't any of you folks break an arm writing so many letters.



Susan L August 9, 2009 at 7:28 PM  

These are some beautiful long ago snapshots of San Francisco. Thank you for sharing these jems.

Anonymous August 9, 2009 at 8:13 PM  

Wow. I would have killed to have been there with you. I'm a history buff and photography fanatic, so I would have gone nuts just like you. It is so amazing that those are still around, and I love that you are blogging them!

Adam August 9, 2009 at 8:15 PM  

i love finding old correspondence. I remember I found tons of old letters from my grandpa's grandma and grandpa. it was amazing reading them all. makes reading Shakespeare seem like child's play.

An Open Heart August 9, 2009 at 8:22 PM  

I love old correspondence....when we were cleaning out my Grandmother's place we found an old box with all of the letters my grandfather sent to my grandmother while he was on ship during WWII....they are beautiful. The post cards are amazing...would be fun to have them framed and hanging around....
Thanks for sharing....


smith kaich jones August 9, 2009 at 8:25 PM  

Oh God, I am so jealous. I LOVE this kind of stuff. I never buy the postcards for the pictures - always for the correspondence. The best one ever said "Nuts about you baby!" and then something about let's go swinging & dancing next time I'm in town. I need to track that down & put it somewhere I can see it daily.

cuileann August 9, 2009 at 10:12 PM  

Winter Clothes in July? Hahaha PERFECT. Clearly, he was really here.

This reminds me of how much I like inscriptions in used books...

~K August 10, 2009 at 5:41 AM  

"Wish you & Rush were with us."

Rush Limbaugh?

Rachel August 10, 2009 at 9:20 AM  

Wow, awesome cards! I wish we still had the 10th and Fulton water park... I'd be there all the time!

Char August 10, 2009 at 12:33 PM  

I love the everyday speech of the writers and the sarcasm of the last sentence of the last card.


Relyn August 10, 2009 at 6:30 PM  

Oh, you know this makes me little heart go pitty-pat. Pitty-pitty-pat-pat!

evylynn August 11, 2009 at 9:49 AM  

Beautiful! Thanks for sharing. One more reason we should keep writing post cards--so people 100 years from now can find and read them, and wonder at how quaint it was in 2009.

SE'LAH... August 12, 2009 at 6:13 PM  

Cool cards. What great finds. Thanks so much for sharing and for adding a lovely energy to my day.