Monday, July 15, 2013

The heart of Alsace

Alsace is a region next to the German border and for many years passed between Germany and France. The history of Alsace is very complicated, so you can imagine how strongly the people must have felt being passed back and forth. These cards were posted in 1907. The young woman is wearing the traditional bow which became a symbol of the region. Colours and patterns varied from place to place within Alsace.

The three postcards are ‘Pray for France’, ‘God protect France’ and ‘The voices of France’

Sunday, July 07, 2013

Artist's inspiration

Here is a postcard illustrated by the artist Frédéric Régamey. It is an advertisement for Vin Mariani which was Bordeaux wine treated with coca leaves. Here you see examples of before, during and after.  The wine extracted the cocaine from the leaves which very much altered the drink’s effect (Queen Victoria drank it too!!). The wine was exported to the US where it was eventually replaced by Coca-Cola during the prohibition. While researching Vin Mariani and Frédéric Régamy I was interested to discover that he made the drawings from his own autoportrait – useful information for me as his brother was also F Régamy (Félix) and drew in a very similar style…

Frédéric Régamey

The postcard is in very poor condition and is over 110 years old. Thank you to Wikipedia for the drawing and information

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Don't move

This family came from Le Faouët in Brittany and were being photographed in their best clothes. Over 110 years ago having your photograph taken must have been an ordeal. .. and not everyone knew about smiling for the camera.