MRS PRESIDENT CLEVELAND : TRADE CARD : ADVERTISING “THE BEST BREWING COMPANY”

Meet “Mrs President Cleveland”. In the era of Grover Cleveland’s Presidencies, wives were just extensions of their husbands and their names, were at times, irrelevant. Mrs President Cleveland was actually Frances Cleveland (1864-1947). Grover Cleveland served two terms as President. He was the 22nd and 24th President and the only President to serve non consecutive terms. He began his terms in 1885 and 1893. Enough about Grover, there is plenty to say about Frances. She was born in Buffalo, New York. Her given first name was “Frank”, but she feminized it later. She was named after an uncle. Her father was an attorney and was a close friend of Grover Cleveland. Cleveland met Frances when she was a baby and he was twenty-seven years old. He watched Frances grow up and showed a caring interest in her. When Frances lost her father in a carriage accident, she was only eleven years-old. Cleveland became the administrator of her father’s estate and this position put him in more contact with her. While Frances was in college, Cleveland developed romantic feeling toward her and in 1885, he proposed to her. At age 21, she was the youngest wife of a President. Frances received much attention from the newspapers and magazines of the time. Her wedding was widely covered. John Phillip Sousa led the Marine band at her wedding. Throughout her husband’s terms, many American women imitated her hairstyle and her fashion taste. The Women’s Christian Temperance Union was very critical of the way Frances dressed. They did not appreciate her baring her shoulders and wearing low cut dresses. They prepared a petition of protest which the first lady ignored. Grover and Frances had five children, three daughters and two sons. She was first first lady to give birth while her husband was President. Her first born, Ruth, died at age twelve of diphtheria. The “Baby Ruth” candy bar was named after her. Grover Cleveland died in 1908. About four years later, Frances married a professor of archaeology at her alma mater, Wells College. When World War I started, she joined the pro-war National Security League and became an officer of the organization. She created much controversy with the league when she claimed that a large segment of the American population was unassimilated and preventing the country from working together efficiently. Adding to the stir was that she recommended that school children should be psychologically indoctrinated to be in favor of the war. All this self initiated commotion caused her to resign in 1919. Frances Cleveland was no friend of the Women’s Suffrage movement. She cemented the disfavor of the movement when she said that “women weren’t yet intelligent enough to vote”. In 1913, she was elected as vice president of the “New Jersey Association Opposed to Woman’s Suffrage”. On a more politically correct note, during the Great Depression she led the “Needlework Guild of America’s clothing drive for the poor. Immediately after her wedding, the facial image of Mrs Cleveland began appearing in advertising aimed at selling various products such as sewing kits, cigars, and women’s perfume. Frances was a perfect model for companies looking to advertise. She was young, pretty, and vivacious. One form of advertising that employed Mrs Cleveland’s image to sell products, was trade cards, such as the one seen above. This trade card aims to sell “The ‘Best’ Tonic” which was produced by “The Philadelphia Best Brewing Company”. Advertising on this tradecard declares that the brewing company will send a 19″ x 25″ portrait of Frances Cleveland to customers that send in twelve coupons from their “Best Tonic”product.  This trade card was printed by the Julius Bien (1826-1909) Lithograph Company of New York. This vintage trade card is in good condition (see scans).   (SOLD)

CARMEN DE FOYA : PRETTY SPANISH DANCER : COURTED BY A KING (1906)

The pretty woman in this vintage real photo postcard is the Spanish dancer, Carmen De Foya. “The Sketch: A Journal of Art and Activity (1905) reported on the De Foyas “consderable grace and skill” when she performed at the Alhambra theater in London, England. Her photo accompanied the article. “The San Francisco Call” (1905) labelled her a “famous Spanish Dancer” and announced her London appearance. The newspaper also added  that when De Foya performed in Berlin, she danced at a function attended by the Kaiser. The German leader not only complimented De Foya, but also gave her diamond earrings. It is reported that the pair had an interesting exchange about marriage. When De Foya stated she wanted to get married, the Kaiser suggested that she marry an Englishman because they make the best husbands. “The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News” (1905) described De Foya’s act as “poetry in motion”. “The Esoteric Curiosa” (2014) tells a racy story about Miss De Foya. It seems Spain’s King Alfonso XIII nearly went to “the limit of foolishness” over “little Carmen de Foya”. She “knew how to make eyes at a King without getting into trouble”. One night at the Madrid Opera, she kicked her satin toes right at him. The next day King Alfonso sent her flowers and a card. The card said “The loveliest flowers of Spain, to Spain’s loveliest” The King was a known womanizer and he often acted on impulse. In an effort to avoid scandal, Defoya left the next day for Paris. Another version of this story has the two romantically linked. The photograph of Miss De Foya seen on this postcard, was taken by Leopold Reutlinger, a very well respected talented photographer based in Paris. One of his specialties was theatrical photography. The postcard was published by Societe Industrielle de Photograpie (SIP) of Rueil, France. The card is part of a series (no. 1309). The postmark indicates it was stamped in Arente (Italy) in the year 1906.    (SOLD)

 

JOHN FRANKLIN FORT FOR GOVERNOR OF NEW JERSEY : CAMPAIGN POSTCARD (1907)

This vintage postcard was employed as advertising for New Jersey Governor candidate, John Franklin Fort (1852-1920). Fort was a Republican and won his race to become the 33rd Governor of New Jersey. He served between 1908 and 1911. He defeated Democrat, Frank S. Katzenbach. In 1908, Fort participated in New Jersey’s first radio broadcast. In 1910 he established New Jersey’s first Department of Education. Fort was followed by Woodrow Wilson in the position of Governor. Wilson went on to become the President of the United States. Fort was a lawyer. He obtained his law degree at the Albany Law School. Governor and ex civil war General, George B. McClellan, appointed Fort to serve as a judge in a Newark district court. In 1884, 1896, and 1912 he served as a delegate to the Republican National Convention. In 1900, he was appointed to the New Jersey Supreme Court. In 1915, Wilson, now President, appointed Fort to the Federal Trade Commission. He held the position for about four years but was forced to resign due to failing health. At one point,Wilson appointed Fort to act as US Ambassador to Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Besides featuring a portrait of John Franklin Fort, the postcard also displays a drawing of the state capital building in Trenton. It is interesting to note that John Franklin Fort’s uncle, George Franklin Fort, was the Democratic Governor of New Jersey from 1851 to 1854. This postcard was published by the Whitehead & Hoag Company of Newark, New Jersey. Benjamin Whitehead (1858-1940) was born in Newark. He received his technical information from the Cooper Union Institute in New York City. He became a printer and some of his printing samples were exhibited at the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia. In 1876, he opened his own firm in Newark. The business was named Whitehead & Clark. Whitehead liked to travel domestically and abroad (he visited 22 nations)  and he took many photographs as well as gathered ideas for novelties for his business to produce. Whitehouse was joined in business by Chester R. Hoag (1860-1935). They incorporated their business in 1892. Whitehead & Hoag manufactured over 5,000 different novelty advertising items. They were considered the largest business in the nation that manufactured advertising novelties. They were particularly well known for their efforts producing advertising buttons. The company opened offices around the U.S. and in some international cities. In 1959, the company was sold and shuttered it’s doors. This would be nice addition to any New Jersey politics collection. The postcard is from about 1907 and in excellent condition (see scans).             

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Buy this vintage Real Photo Postcard (includes shipping within the United States) #2927

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PORTRAIT OF MONTANA SENATOR THOMAS J. WALSH : MAJOR CONTRIBUTOR TO U.S. HISTORY

The year is 1928. The race is on for the Democratic nomination. This press photo (3/3/28) features U.S. Senator Thomas J. Walsh (1859-1933). At the time of the photo, he was vying for the nomination to represent the Democrats in the 1928 election. Walsh lost the nomination to New York Governor Al Smith. Smith subsequently lost the election to Republican Secretary of Commerce, Herbert Hoover. Walsh had sought the nomination as a “dry” candidate. In other words, he was a supporter of Prohibition. He also was noted  as a Senate prosecutor of the oil industry. Walsh was a lawyer politician who represented the state of Montana from 1913 to 1933. He was considered to be a liberal but that did not stop Franklin D. Roosevelt from selecting him to be the United States Attorney General. Unfortunately, Walsh died on a train as he headed to Roosevelt’s inauguration and never served in that role. If you are interested, I would suggest researching the details of the Senator’s demise. Was he murdered? You will find more than one conspiracy theory, and it’s an interesting story. Here are more biographical details about the Senator. During his career he had been a spokesman for President Woodrow Wilson in the Senate. He also was a supporter of Women’s suffrage, farm loans, the League of Nations, and the graduated income tax. During the 1920’s Walsh headed the Senate investigation into the Teapot Dome scandal (involved top officials of the Harding administration). In 1924 and 1932, he was the chairman of the Democratic Convention. Senator Thomas J. Walsh clearly played a major role in the US Senate and had significant impact on the nation. This vintage press photograph measures 5″ x 7″ and is in very good condition (see scans). If you think Senator Walsh appears intense in this photo, you are correct. Bob Brown, a Montana politician, states that there is no known photograph showing Walsh smiling. Brown’s comment appeared in an article he wrote for the Missoulian (1919).

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A BOY AND HIS ’59 CHEVY IMPALA SPORTING A BARRY GOLDWATER SENATE CAMPAIGN SIGN (1968)

chevy 1 This snapshot photograph is an excellent piece of American social history. The image shows a young man pointing to a political poster affixed to the side of a 1959, or 1960 Chevy Impala. The sign is supporting the 1968 US Senate campaign of Barry Goldwater  (1909-1988).  Goldwater was a conservative republican from Arizona. The sign states that Goldwater “hit the floor in ’64”.  Hitting the floor is a reference to the fact that Goldwater lost the Presidential election to Lyndon B Johnson in 1964. Johnson won a landslide victory. Goldwater only won six states. The sign maker wrote “Watch our weight in ’68”, referring to Goldwater’s Senate race that year. The sign maker was predicting victory and victory is exactly what occurred. Note the car’s radio antenna. Also take note of the “Taxi” sign behind the boys left shoulder. It is interesting to note the John McCain succeeded Goldwater in the US Senate. This photograph is a perfect illustration of life in the late 1960’s. The Chevy and the boy’s attire (love the cardigan sweater), take me back to a simpler time.  (SOLD)

Published in: on September 16, 2019 at 12:00 pm  Comments (2)  
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PORTRAIT OF JIHAN SADAT – DAUGHTER OF THE LATE EGYPTIAN PRESIDENT – ANWAR SADAT

This press photo features Jihan (Jehan) Sadat. She is the daughter of the late Egyptian President, Anwar Sadat (1918-1981). He was the third President of Egypt and served from 1970 to 1981. He was assassinated while in office. He negotiated a peace treaty with Israel’s Menachem Begin and the two shared the Nobel Peace prize. This photograph was taken by John Whitman of Camera Press, located in London, England. It was taken in 1983. The photo is in excellent condition (see scans).

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PORTRAIT OF AN ADORABLE YOUNG BOY BY A PHOTOGRAPHER / MAYOR IN MARION, OHIO

This vintage photograph features an adorable young boy dressed in a sailor styled outfit. He seems to be holding back a smile. The photograph was taken by the Wark studio in Marion, Ohio. James Wark was born in Ireland in 1847. At age 19 he immigrated to the United States and apprenticed for photographer George W Manly (Akron, Ohio). He then worked as a photographer in Kent, Ohio (1871-1891).He is known to have moved to Marion about 1895 and was an active photographer until about 1901. Wark was a busy man in Kent. In the mid 1880’s he he served three terms as Franklin Township’s clerk. He served as mayor of the town between 1886 and 1887. As mayor, Wark had complicated and controversial issues to manage. These controversies included the construction of a municipal waterworks and a resolution to ban saloon traffic in Kent. He relocated to Marion in the Mid 1890’s.  He was a popular resident there and picked up the nickname of “Daddy” Wark. He photographed four generations of clients over his more than sixty year career. He closed his studio in 1933 at 86 years of age. He died in 1934. This photograph measures about 5 1/4″ x 7 3/4″.

Published in: on November 25, 2017 at 12:00 pm  Comments (3)  
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CROWN PRINCE WILHELM AND PRINCESS CECILIE OF GERMANY (PRESS PHOTO)

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This vintage press photograph features Crown Prince Wilhelm and his wife, Crown Princess Cecilie. The photo was taken by George Grantham Bain in 1915 and it likely appeared in a number of newspapers.Some readers may be wondering about these Royals. Who are these people? Prince Wilhelm (1882-1951) was the last Crown Prince of Prussia and the German Empire. He married Duchess Cecilie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1886-1954) in 1905. The pair’s marriage wasn’t rock solid. The Crown Prince had affairs with both American opera singer Geraldine Farrar and dancer Mata Hari. The photographer of this photograph was a pioneer news photographer. George Grantham Bain (1865-1944) was a New York City photographer known as “the father of photographic news”. He was a chemistry graduate of St Louis University and also received a law degree there. He then became a reporter for two St. Louis newspapers in succession and one of his assignments was Washington DC correspondent. He then worked for United Press International and in 1898 started the Bain News Service. Forty thousand of Bain’s glass negatives are in the collection of the Library of Congress. This vintage press photo was published by the Bain News Service.
220px-Ggbain                                                 Photo of George Grantham Bain

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FAMOUS PHOTOGRAPHER SHOOTS FAMOUS POLITICIAN: PORTRAIT OF THEODOR TANTZEN BY CHARLES REUTLINGER (CARTE DE VISITE)

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This carte de visite image features German politician Theodor Johann Tantzen. The photographer who took this portrait of Mr. Tantzen was the celebrated photographer, Charles Reutlinger (1816-1881). Theodor Johann Tantzen (1834-1893) was from a political family in the Oldenburg State. His father was a member of parliament. Two of Theodor’s children became important political figures. His son, also named Theodor, became Prime Minister of Oldenburg. Tantzen’s grandson was philosopher Karl Jaspers (1883-1969). Theodor Tantzen grew up in Heering and at age twenty-one, he took over his fathers farm. In 1866 he was elected to the Oldenburg parliament. He remained in parliament for several terms and in fact died while still a parliament member. While in parliament he served in a number of other political roles. Now some words about the photographer. Charles Reutlinger was also part of a prominent and talented family. Charles Reutlinger was of German descent and founded the Reutlinger Photography Studio in Paris in 1850. The studio took photographs of many of the city’s rich and famous residents and visitors until 1937. The British Journal of Photography (1867) provides a wonderful description of Reutlinger’s studio. Charles’s brother Emile took over the studio in 1880 and he ran it until 1890. Emile’s son, Leopold took over in 1890 and among his accomplishments was that he developed the company’s esteemed and economically successful postcard business. The studio became known for it’s unusual art nouveau style of postcard designs. These were very notable in it’s portraits of actresses. Leopold also introduced risque/erotic postcards. He operated the business until losing an eye in an accident with a champagne cork in 1930. He died seven years later.

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WALTER Q. GRESHAM: CIVIL WAR HERO AND HOLDER OF TWO US GOVERNMENT CABINET POSITIONS (PHOTOGRAPH BY CELEBRATED PHOTOGRAPHER C. M. BELL)

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Walter Q. Gresham (1832-1895) was quite an accomplished man in both his military and his political careers. He was an American statesman and jurist. He held offices that included US Postmaster General, Judge on the US Court of Appeals, Secretary of State, and the Secretary of Treasury. He was a two time candidate for the Republican nomination for President (1884 and 1888). He also served as a Union officer in the American Civil War. He entered the army as a Lieutenant Colonel of the the 38th Indiana Volunteer Infantry. He was promoted to full Colonel and led the 53rd Indiana Infantry and took part in the fight for Vicksburg as well as other battles. In 1863 he was appointed Brigadier General and commanded Federal forces in Natchez, Mississippi. In 1864 he became a division commander under General Sherman during the Atlanta campaign. He was forced to leave the army after being shot in his knee; an injury that left him lame for the remainder of his life. He was married to Matilda McGrain in 1858. Gresham is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. The photographer of this historic cabinet card is C. M. Bell. Charles Milton Bell (1848-1893) was also an accomplished man. He was the youngest member of a family of photographers that operated a studio in Washington DC from around 1860 until 1874. He established his own studio on Pennsylvania Avenue in 1873. He quickly became one of the most successful photographers in the city. He was noted for his portraits of Native Americans as well as political figures and celebrities. His subjects included President Chester Arthur, Chief Yellow Bull, and Helen Keller. His photographs can be found in many prestigious institutions including The Library of Congress, Harvard University, Dartmouth University, and the Smithsonian. Bell is also known for his photographs of President Garfield’s assassin, Charles J. Guiteau. He was the only photographer authorized by Guiteau and the Government to take photographs of Guiteau and other people playing roles in his trial. Bell also took medical photographs relating to the assassination and assassin.