This vintage real photo postcard features pretty theater actress, Isla Garnet-Vayne. I just can’t refrain from saying “Isla, you’re so vayne. You probably think this blog entry is about you”. I couldn’t resist. My apologies to singer/song-writer Carly Simon. England’s National Portrait Gallery has four portraits of Miss Garnet-Vayne in their collection. One of the portraits is identical to the one seen on this photo postcard. The National Portrait Gallery reports that this photograph was taken in 1910 by Alexander Bassano. The website, Theatricalia, reports on three productions in which Miss Garnet-Vayne performed. The plays listed are ” The Prince and the Beggar Maid (1908-1909), “A Girls Temptation” (1909-1910), and “From Mill Girl to Millionairess” (1910-1911). All of the aforementioned plays were performed in Southampton, England. Further research is needed to learn more about this pretty stage actress. Postcard portraits of Miss Garnet-Vayne are rare and this is one of the nicer ones I’ve seen. It is in very good condition (see scans).                                               

Buy this Vintage Real Photo Postcard (includes shipping within the US) #2926

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Buy this Vintage Real Photo Postcard (includes International shipping outside the US) #2926

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Miss Winifred Emery (1861-1924) is the subject of this vintage real photo postcard. She was an English actress and actor-manager during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. She was married to actor Cyril Maude (m. 1888). It is not hard to imagine that the fact that she was born into a family of actors, played a role in her career choice. She began as a child actress and during the 1880’s and 1890’s her career blossomed as she played many leading roles in London’s West End theatres. Interestingly, her first London appearance was in 1874 in the pantomime,”Beauty and the Beast”. She later joined Marie Litton’s company, Herbert Beerbohm Tree’s theatre company, Henry Irving’s theatre company, and Wilson Barrett’s company. She eventually started her own touring theatre company with her husband. In 1896, her husband became actor-manager of the Haymarket Theatre and Emery became his leading lady. Among the plays that Emery appeared in are number of productions of Shakespeare. Emery had a successful stage career that spanned over forty years. This postcard was published circa 1910 by Raphael Tuck & Sons’ as part of the “Stage Favourites” Series (No. 5062). The photographer of this portrait of Miss Emery was Alexander Bassano, a very respected celebrity photographer. (SOLD)


This vintage real photo postcard features theater actress Miss Lydia Flopp (1877-1963). “Flopp” is an unfortunate name for a stage performer. However, it did not get in the way of her success on the stage.  Lydia was one of the five “Rudge Sisters”. The women were British actresses and dancers. Some of them were quite successful. The sisters performed as Letty Lind, Millie Hylton, Adelaide Astor, Fanny Dango, and the aforementioned Lydia Flopp. The sisters were primarily dancers but over time developed their singing ability. They performed in pantomime, variety, music hall, and Victorian burlesque realms of theater. Their venues included the Gaiety and Daly theaters in London. Letty Lind was a popular skirt dancer and star of musical comedies. Hylton worked in music halls and theatre and had much success appearing in varieties as a male impersonator. Miss Astor was a West End actress and Fanny Dango worked in London and then launched a successful career performing in Australia. Lydia Flopp’s specialty was pantomime. She was a sitter for two photo portraits in the collection of the National Portrait Gallery. The photographer of Miss Flopp’s portrait is Alexander Bassano (1829-1913).  Bassano) was a leading royal and high society photographer in Victorian London. This postcard was published in England by the Davidson Brothers. Davidson Brothers was located in both London and New York City. The firm operated between 1901 and 1911. This postcard is published by Rotary Photo as part of the Rotary Photographic Series (no.1594 B). This vintage postcard portrait has excellent clarity and is in excellent condition (see scans).  (SOLD)


This vintage real photo postcard portrait feature British silent film actress, Marjorie Villis (1891-1981). Miss Villis is quite pretty and has a wonderful smile. This photograph captures her in a risque pose and a risque costume. What an amazing elaborate and busy costume. When I first saw this image, I immediately became motivated to find information about this provocative actress. I met little success in learning about Marjorie Villis. Photographs of her appear to be uncommon, and I could not find the postcard above anywhere online. I did learn that she sat for seven postcard portraits that can be found in the UK’s National Portrait Gallery, All of the portraits were taken by celebrated photographer, Alexander Bassano. The IMDb credits Villis with 15 film roles between 1915 and 1922. Villis was most noted for her roles in “The Rugged Path (1918), “A Romany Lass (1918)”, and  “Brenda of the Barge (1920). She had a relatively short career. I wonder why her career ended so abruptly? The first talkie feature film did not get released until 1927, so we know that, unlike many other silent film stars, Villis was not shut out of the film industry because of an unsuitable voice or foreign accent. This postcard was published by J. Beagles & Company (London)  as part of a series (no.142 J). The wonderful portrait of Miss Villis was taken by S. Ward. This vintage postcard is in very good condition (see scans)

Buy this original Vintage Real Photo Postcard (includes shipping within the US) #2813

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Buy this original Vintage Real Photo Postcard (includes International shipping outside the US) #2813

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crawfordPHOTO 1  (SOLD)

alice crawford         PHOTO 2  (SOLD)

crawford 2 PHOTO 3  (SOLD)

crawford 4  PHOTO 4   (SOLD)

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These vintage real photo postcards feature a beautiful actress named Alice Crawford (1882-1931). Miss Crawford was born in Bendigo, Australia. Her sister, Ruby Crawford was also an actress. Miss Crawford came to England with actor Wilson Barret in 1902 after appearing with him in Australia. Her London debut was in 1902 in in the play “The Christian”.  She was in the revival of the play in 1907. Other stage credits include “Antony and Cleopatra (1906), Matt of Merrymount (1908), and “The Passing of the Third Floor, Back” (1908). The New York Times (1909) announced her arrival in New York to perform in “These Are My People”. She is credited with film roles in “False Ambition” (1918) and Glorious Adventure (1922). There are fifteen portraits of Alice Crawford in the National Portrait Gallery, eight of which are by the photographer of the top photo postcard (Alexander Bassano}. Bassano  (1829 –1913) was a leading royal and high society photographer in Victorian London. Crawford was married to George Valentine Williams. He was wounded twice in WW I and was awarded the Military Cross. He later worked as a journalist, mostly in trouble spots. During WW2 he conducted “confidential work” for the British Government. He is best known as an author of Detective Fiction. He died in 1946. This postcard captures Miss Crawford in costume for her role as “Diantha Frothingham” in “Matt of Merrymount” (1908). Alice Crawford certainly qualifies as a “stage beauty” and she has an amazingly engaging smile. Bassano photographed the actress for Rotary Photo’s, Rotary Photographic Series (no.1852 R).                                      

The second photo postcard features Miss Crawford looking quite beautiful. Her hair is long and flowing and she has a flower hair band. Her eyes are beautiful and she appears to be holding back a smile. Like the first postcard, this card is also published by Rotary Photo and was part of a series (no. 1852 K). In fact both postcards seen here are part of the same series.  The postcard’s photograph was taken by the Dover Street Studio.  The studio was active between circa 1906 and circa 1912. The gallery specialized in taking theatrical portraits and was located in London, England. They were the successors to the Biograph Studios as well Adart (a studio that took advertising photos). Examination of the reverse of this postcard (see second postcard below) reveals that it was postmarked in 1907. The message on the back of the postcard is quite interesting because it contains comments about the photo on the postcard. The writer reports that she was charmed by a postcard from the addressee and she asks her how she likes “this one”. The writer also states that she was planning to go see “The Thief” at the St. James Theater. Billboard (1907) contains a review of the musical and describes it as an English version of Henry Bernstein’s “Le Voleur”.  The play was produced by Mr George Alexander and it’s cast included Mr. Alexander, Irene Vanbrugh, and Lillian Braithwaite. 

The third photo postcard portrait of Miss Crawford was produced by Rotary Photo and photographed by Dover Studios. The postcard was part of the Rotary Photographic Series (no.1852 P) and was printed in England. This photograph captures Alice Crawford appearing quite dismayed.

The fourth real photo postcard in this collection features a close-up portrait of Miss Crawford. This image confirms that Alice Crawford was certainly a stage beauty. The photograph is very similar to the second postcard in this group and the two images were likely taken during the same photo session at the Dover Street Studio. This postcard was published by Raphael Tuck and Sons and is part of the “Celebrities of the Stage” series (no. T 1148). Raphael Tuck and his wife started their photography business in 1866 in London. Their store sold pictures, greeting cards, and in time, postcards. Their success came from the sale of postcards during the late 1890’s and early 1900’s. In the early 1900’s the firm conducted postcard competitions for collectors of Tuck postcards. These competitions offered cash prizes and they were very popular. The winner of one of these competitions had a collection consisting of over twenty-five thousand cards. Three of Tuck’s four sons participated in the business. The company was devastated by German bombing during World War II. In 1959 the company merged with two other printing companies. This postcard was written and postmarked in 1908. It was postmarked at Bradninch, England. The message on the card is a “Happy Birthday” wish.

The fifth photo postcard features a close-up view of Miss Crawford. She looks pretty with her rolled curl hair and her engaging eyes. This postcard was published by Raphael Tuck and Sons. It is part of the “Celebrities of the Stage”  series (no. T 1202).

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crawford 4 1                                                                        POSTCARD 4

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                                                                        POSTCARD 5



This vintage real photo postcard features beautiful music hall actress Miss Hilda Hammerton. Hammerton was known for being one of the “Cozy Corner Girls”. She and Gertrude Thornton, and Clare Richards appeared as the Cozy girls in the musical comedy, “The Earl and the Girl” (1903) which was produced at the Adelphi Theater. “Weekly Magazine” (1904) article reports that Hammerton performed a very heroic act. She risked her life to save the life of a little child. While out walking, she heard people screaming about a little girl in danger who had strayed into the roadway and was in “imminent danger” of being run over by a fast approaching vehicle. The actress ran to the scene and scooped up the child, and barely avoided being hit by the speeding truck. It was reported that witnesses to the scene gave her an ovation for her quick actions. There are three portraits of Miss Hammerton in England’s National Portrait Gallery. The talented photographer responsible for this lovely portrait is Bassano. Two of the three portraits of Hammerton in the National Portrait Gallery are by Alexander Bassano. Bassano  (1829 –1913) was a leading royal and high society photographer in Victorian London. This postcard was published in England by the Davidson Brothers. Davidson Brothers was located in both London and New York City. The firm operated between 1901 and 1911. This postcard is part of the “Real Photographic Series” (no. 2253). The message on this postcard is written in French, but the sender mailed it from England. The postmark indicates that it was stamped in Edinburgh, England in 1907. The postcard was mailed to someone in Paris, France.   SOLD


 The pretty subject of this vintage real photo postcard is actress and opera singer, Violet Essex (1893-1941). The English born Miss Essex appears in a web site entitled “Forgotten Opera Singers” which is written by Ashot Arakelyan. Essex sang during World War I when there was a demand for “lighter music”. Essex, a soprano, fulfilled that need. She recorded under her own name as well as under “Vera Desmond”. Miss Essex was known for her performances in Gilbert and Sullivan’s operas. She starred in the comic opera “Chu Chin Chow” during its five and a half year run in London. She was married to Charles Tucker, an English theatrical producer. She died just six months after moving with her family to Beverly Hills, California. This postcard portrait shows Miss Essex as Emmeline in the Edwardian musical comedy “The Sunshine Girl”. The show was first produced by George Edwardes at London’s Gaiety Theatre. The musical opened in 1912 and ran for 336 performances. The show introduced the tango to British audiences. Violet  Essex was in the original cast. The play also had a Broadway run in 1913 at the Knickerbocker Theatre. The photographer who took this photograph of Miss Essex is Alexander Bassano (1829-1913). He was a leading royal and high society London photographer and more of his images can be seen by clicking on Cabinet Card Gallery’s category “Photographer: Bassano”. This postcard was produced around 1912 and is part of a series (41243 8). To hear a recorded performance (Dear Heart) by Violet Essex, click on the link below. 




Published in: on April 14, 2017 at 6:50 pm  Comments (1)  
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The top vintage real photo postcard features stage actress Miss Denise Orme. She is very attractive and beautifully dressed. She is wearing a fur stole and and fur muffs. She has a lovely hat and wonderful smile. Miss Orme’s given name was Jessie Smither, and was later known as Duchess of Leinster. Denise Orme (1885-1960) was an English music hall singer, actress and musician who was a regular performeer at the Alhambra and Gaiety Theatres in London during the early years of the twentieth century. Her mother was a professor of music. She trained for her theatrical career at the Royal Academy of Music and the Royal College of Music. Her stage debut was in 1906 in the chorus at Daly’s Theatre in London. Later that same year she appeared in the title role of “See See” at the Prince of Wales Theatre. In 1906 she participated in gramophone recordings of Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Mikado”. Her marital history reveals that she had a predilection to choosing husbands that were “rich and famous”. She was married to an English Baron, A Danish millionaire, and an Irish duke. She was the maternal grandmother of Aga Khan IV.who is the current Imam of Nizari Ismailism which is a denomination of of Ismailism within Shia Islam with 15 million adherents. He is also a British business magnate. Miss Orme’s photographic portrait was taken by the Foulsham and Banfield Studio. Foulsham & Banfield were well known celebrity photographers. Frank Foulsham and A. C. Banfield operated a studio in the 1900’s through the 1920’s. The postcard was published by Rotary Photo and is part of the Rotary Photographic Series (#4098 Q). The postcard has a postmark from London, England, and dated 1907. The postmark date reveals that this portrait of Miss Orme was taken at the beginning of her stage career. In the message section of the postcard, the sender asks the receiver, “What do you think of Denise?”. In addition, the sender asserts on the front of the postcard “Nice hat, isn’t it?”. I have to agree; not only is Miss Orme lovely, so is her hat…….  The second postcard shows the beautiful and well dressed Miss Orme peeking out from behind a curtain. The photographer is Alexander Bassano (1829-1913) who was a leading royal and high society photographer located in London. This postcard, like the first was published by Rotary Photo and is part of the Rotary Photographic Series (no. 1933 I)……. The third photo postcard portrait of Miss Orme presents a close-up profile view of this stunningly pretty young actress. Like the first two photo postcards, this one is also published by the Rotary Photo company and is part of the Rotary Photographic Series (no. 4098 M). The photograph was taken by “Play Pictorial” which was an English theatre magazine published in London between 1902 and 1939. The publication provided a pictorial presentation of West End theatrical productions with each issue focusing on just one play.

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This item is a vintage postcard featuring the very attractive theater actress Sybil Arundale (1879-1965). Her stage roles included a number of Shakespeare plays. Her sister Grace was also an actress. The postcard was produced by Philco Publishing Company in London, England. It is number 3005 in a series. The photographer was Alexander Bassano (1829-1913) who was a leading royal and high society photographer located in London.   SOLD


Marie Tempest: English Singer and Actress

Marie Temptest (1864-1942) was a famous soprano in late Victorian light opera and Edwardian musical comedies. She later became a a leading comic actress. She toured in North America and  other parts of the world. She was also a significant force behind the founding of the actors union Actors’ Equity in England. She was born in London, England and educated in Belgium. Her later musical education took place in Paris and London. She had her debut in 1885 in the operetta Boccaccio in London. After a few years in other performances, she performed on Broadway over a three year span. She was in numerous productions including The Tyrolean, and The Fencing Master.  She was considered on the few rivals to Lillian Russell. Tempest was a difficult star but mellowed in middle age. She was a very active actress and performed in numerous productions over the years. She was created a Dame Commander of the British Empire in 1937. The top Cabinet Cafd was photographed by famous celebrity photographer Falk, of New York City.  The bottom Cabinet Card was produced by A. Bassano of London, England.