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Saturday, February 20, 2016

Who is Gladys Holbrook?

I come across lots of pictures, because we take a lot of pictures. Every now and then, a picture shows up that deserves more attention.  I think Gladys is someone we should know more about - can you help?
Who is Gladys Holbrook
Pretty. I know her name because someone scribbled it on the back. She may be Florence Holbrook the silent film actress, but I can't pin down a biography.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Grandma's stash wasn't safe even in the late 19th Century!

I found a grand illustration titled:
"Grandmother's Snuff Box #100"
It is from a well know printer of the era named Abraham Le Blond.
The depiction is grandma about to walk in on the kids in the middle of raiding and experimenting with her "Snuff." Named by the Dutch Snuff gives a quick nicotine "high." It should not be used by the kiddies.
If you look closely, the kitty wants nothing to do with it.
All the studying I have done would have me believe this is a Baxter oval. George Baxter (1804-1867) printer/illustrator had his work licensed by Le Blond who also acquired more of Baxter's prints after he died. I think this is one of the reproductions. However, as good as this is for it's aged it is rather beaten up, but the clarity and the color are pretty good. Le Blond was not considered by Baxter aficionados to have done justice to Baxter and the reproduction of his prints. You can read a rather long book of information (even Baxter's" death certificate!) by clicking here.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Sorry, My Dance Card is Full (1899

This is an interesting find, but where is the Gratiot Beach Casino? Looks like it may have been a fun time. I am waiting to hear back from the Historical Society in Dunkirk, NY.  There's a Gratiot Light there keeping ships from landing on the Beach goers.
Even Better was the interior
Your dance card would be full too if you could dance the two-step and the waltz

Monday, February 1, 2016

Hidden for 45 years - Vintage toys uncovered (video)

The winters seem warmer these days. Cold winters used to cause hibernation among the potential for sales. When no snow expected more people take a chance that they can clear out their unwanted items.  Though several sales were listed this weekend, it was still anyone's guess as to which one may have a story for me to find.

A random ad led to a river road in Southbury CT on a Sunday where I made a desperate attempt to find something other than the leftovers from a thousand other pickers.
What I did find at first was a fairly quiet sale with a nice couple managing it to clear out what had been their parent's home. With permission, I prefer to look in places that are not so obvious.
Full of old records this closet looked to be worth investigating. By taking my time I can take in the space as though it were a puzzle. Where would I tuck something away if I lived here? 
This darker shelf was obscured by a fallen piece of burlap and above eye-level. Pulling it away and using the light on my phone and I realized I had found something others had missed. I immediately left to get the homeowner - it had been her parents home - to show her what I found.  
She was amazed that they had missed this shelf and that no one else had been able to find it in the past 2 days.  The items belonged to her brother who was now living in California and she expected he would be amazed to have them.
 This was a full slot car racing set from 1963. Take a look at the video I produced while at the sale. This was great fun and I am very appreciative to this nice couple for letting me dig through their house.