Thursday, October 1, 2009

Postcard Friendship Friday - October Fun One!

Reproduced with permission from

I thought I would do a series of Halloween post cards for the October Postcard Friendship Fridays. This colorful little card is a Hallowe'en Series (No. 88) Tucks Post Card.


I think the cute little girl is trying to brighten the candles rather than blow them out - in an attempt to stave off the scary pumpkin. She looks like the little Campbell's Soup girl!


The card was postmarked Dodge, Nebraska, November 13, 1914, and was mailed to West Point, Nebraska. Those of us who are familiar with Nebraska, know that the state is 250 miles long north to south, and 22,347.25 miles wide from east to west. Mostly flat with the following flashing by your car window: corn, corn, hogs, corn, hogs,corn, corn, corn, hogs, corn, hogs...well you get the drift. Literally. You'll note that the sender added the word "had" to the Halloween wishes, since it was a belated greeting.

West Point, Nebraska, not to be confused with West Point Naval Academy in New York, is in the uppermost north eastern point of Nebraska. So why did they call it West Point? When founded by the Bruner brothers of Philadelphia in 1857 it was called (snore) New Philadelphia (zzzzzzz). The name was changed to West Point because it was, at that time, the westernmost outpost along the Elkhorn valley.

Pawnee Father and Son - 1912

Historical note: In the spring of 1859, over 4,000 Pawnee natives flooded the Elkhorn Valley during a hunting excursion and, displeased to find white settlers in the valley, burned several homesteads and killed livestock. The Native Americans had a totally different concept of land ownership than the intruders, so who was at fault in this scenario depended mostly on who had pens, paper and printing presses. The population was probably about 700 in 1914.


If you happen to be in the area, West Point is having a Halloween Bash on Friday, October 30th at 8:00 p.m. - midnight at the Nielsen Center. Doors open at 7:00 Costume Contest,
Door Prizes, other fun & games, bar on premises. Tickets -$8 presale, $10 at the door. Tickets available at:
West Point Banks, Chamber of Commerce, and Nielsen Center Office. Help raise funds for the Nielsen Center.

Dodge Nebraska is a village of 700 in north east Nebraska: The Dodge Daze, held annually in July, is a fun-packed day that features a pancake feed, swim meet, sidewalk sale, classic car poker run, band concert, water fights, sand volleyball and softball tournaments, a street dance and, of course, food!


What was going on in 1914?


WWI was in full swing. Jonas Salk (Polio Vaccine) was born, and W. H. Carrier patented the design for the air conditioner. (The people of Florida thank you!)


One of the many popular songs of 1914 was Aba Daba Honeymoon. In 1964, American novelist Thomas Pynchon referred to the song in a 1964 letter to a friend as "the nadir of all American expression": "Our souls [the world] leaves to whatever obsolescence, bigotries, theories of education workable and un- parental wisdom or lack of it, happen to get in its more or less Brownian (your phrase) pilgrimage between the cord-cutting ceremony and the time they slide you down the chute into the oven, while the guy on the Wurlitzer plays Aba Daba Honeymoon because you had once told somebody it was the nadir of all American expression; only they didn't know what nadir meant but it must be good because of the vehemence with which you expressed yourself."


Mmmmm! This is the reason for the season!

It is comforting to know that Candy Corn, having been invented in 1880 was available to our 1914 Halloween celebrants. We have George Renninger of the Wonderle Candy Company to thank for this charming confection. Each year, Americans eat enough Brach's candy corn that if the kernels were laid end to end, they would circle the Earth 4.5 times.

The card reads:
Dear Agie
Rec'd your letter and card both. We are done picking corn 9 weeks ago. We were done the soonest around here. I don't expect to go to the (?) pictures as you said. Would like to see you tho. I am sewing a new winter checkered dress, brown. I got a new coat dress, hat and gloves just lately. I am still engaged but don't know how long it will last. Just imagine me every Sun. on nice big 1915 model overland grey car out in every direction. So your little sister goes to school already. So you worked out too. Do you grow them potatoes out there. My but your (?) wonderfully.
I can't make out the rest of the card, other than it appears Valeria also got a new touring suit to tour in.
She also commented that the way Agie pasted the stamp on her last card indicates that she hates Valeria. I recall something about that - the stamp placed sideways, upside down, off to the left or right etc, indicated some latent emotion expressed by the sender to the recipient.
Valeria made use of every possible inch of the card which is one reason why it is difficult to read even after I enlarged and printed a copy..

This is a 1914 Touring Suit. The hat looks as though it may take off on it's own.


The silhouette of the day

And a progression of figures

See you next PFF with another Halloween treat! And thank you, Marie at Voila! Vintage Postcards for hosting these fun and friendly Fridays.


Evelyn Yvonne Theriault said...

I love the way you took this post in so many directions - it's almost a model lesson for how to blog about postcards!
By coincidence, I also have a postcard featuring Native Americans for my PFF entry this week - but mine definitely has a different feeling!
Evelyn in Montreal

Joanna (JamaGenie) said...

"Each year, Americans eat enough Brach's candy corn that if the kernels were laid end to end, they would circle the Earth 4.5 times."

Or once across Nebraska! lolololol! At least you have something to look at - on I-70 in western KS, after Salina there's NOTHING until the sign saying you're leaving Kansas. (Group cheer!)

FYI - your present comments box configuration doesn't allow FireFox users to leave comments, only those using Internet Explorer. A link to the (quite simple) fix for this is at Saturday's Child, in red at top of the right-hand column. Most visitors won't (or won't know to) switch to IE, and I only ever do when I really, really, REALLY want to say how much I enjoyed a post. This one is a scream! So I bit the bullet and fired up IE, and even then had to google Muse Swings to get here because IE wouldn't accept your URL in the address box. Grrrr....

peggy gatto said...

Boy, thanks for the fun and all the info here!!!
I had a great time!

BeachILike said...

I love the first Halloween cartoon card, sounds like she has good time. The card with very tiny handwriting is amazing too, how she sqeeze all lines in there.

Thanks for sharing, and your effort taking those lines for us to read.


My Bangkok Through My Eyes!
You got a Posty: I want to
give 15 postcards :)

Lynn said...

What a great post!
Dear God, our fore mothers were tortured, weren't they?

I'm having an excellent give away! Please join in the fun of promoting ME!!!

MuseSwings said...

I'm so glad you enjoyed the post! I love investigating these bits of information. Thank you, Joanna for the info needed to fix comments! I never would have known.

Marie Reed said...

She sure does look like the Campbell's soup girl! I was a very very very picky eater as a child. I lived off of Bean and Bacon soup because I turned up my nose at whatever my Mom cooked. She is a fabulous cook too! Kids are so weird:)

Robin said...

aba daba daba daba, daba daba daba daba, said the monkey to the chimp....
As children, we learned that song by way of Judy Garland in Meet Me in St. Louis.

A fabulously fun it!

My husband stocks up on candy corn about now. He'll go through a bag of Brach's in a week. It has to be Brach's candy other. By winter's time he has had his fill. :-)

Thanks for sharing all the interesting information.

Have a beautiful weekend.

Beth Niquette said...

I really enjoyed your post! I loved the first postcard especially and giggled over that winged hat--do you think they actually wore such things? (grin) Anyhow happy PFF!

steviewren said...

My mother used to sing this refrain from the Aba Daba song to us when we were young:

"Aba, daba, daba, daba, daba, daba, dab,"
Means "Monk, I love but you."
"Baba, daba, dab," in monkey talk
Means "Chimp, I love you, too."
Then the big baboon one night in June,
He married them and very soon,
They went upon their aba, daba honeymoon.

I bet she had no idea she was singing the song that was the nadir of all American expression. As for me...I like it. So what does that say about my taste in music and lyrics. Not much according to Thomas Pynchon.

Chris Overstreet said...

Nebraska does seem like it's 20,000 miles wide, doesn't it? Once I drove across it and I saw a tree.

Bob of Holland said...

Loved your post, although I never had heard of the Aba Saba song nor do I know Candy Corn. Sounds good. The Butterfly hat is wonderful.

Lydia said...

I haven't stopped by in a while and was so pleased to see the postcards from my neck of the woods. i live within about 60 miles of these towns (in South Dakota). Yes, you are correct on the width of Nebraska. It is kind of like the Tardis on Dr. Who, it is bigger on the inside than its circumference. endless....

maryt/theteach said...

Museswings, this is the most incredible post - so detailed and so much information! Thank you for sharing. I love candy corn and I eat it long after halloween til the stores run out of it! Ha! :)

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