At the Mail Box

Mail Box Plus 2

I love pictures of people by mail boxes, and the ladies above, on a real photo postcard, inspired me today to add a few here.

Post Box Katherine Gassaway

Postcard (1914) by Katherine Gassaway

Mailbox on Train

Unhappy man emptying mail box on the side of a trolley car

PO Box Gil Elgren

Vintage Gil Elvgren (1914-1980)

Blue Air Mail Postbox

Statue of man by British Air Mail box, with Air Mail Car arriving.

PO Macau

Postman in Macau

PO Box John Lennon

John Lennon posts for Christmas

The Pointless Postcard

“The Pointless Postcard” by Edward Gorey (1925-2000)

Hippy Jump Over Mailbox Alex Olson NYC

Alex Olson does Hippy Jump over mailbox (he’ll be landing on his board on the other side)

emma rose neves

Young woman at a mailbox from the Tumblr blog of Emma Rose Neves.

Tea with the Vanderbilts

tea biltmore 3

I do not mean to suggest that I was close to the Vanderbilts in the early 1900s, or that I have sipped tea on a porch at the Biltmore. But I am fairly certain the man seated on our right is George W. Vanderbilt II who built and owned the estate. The dog at his knee is most likely Cedric, his first St. Bernard.

Center chair, seated, may be George’s sister, Eliza Vanderbilt Webb, with her daughter, Frederica Vanderbilt Webb, standing behind her. The woman standing on the left is most likely Alice Claypoole Gwynne Vanderbilt, wife of Cornelius Vanderbilt II, and George’s sister-in-law. The woman seated in front of Alice, with the Irish wolfhound, is probably George’s wife Edith Dresser Vanderbilt.

The seated woman looking grumpy might be Margaret Louisa Vanderbilt Shepard, George’s sister, but I’m not putting any money on it. And the man with the moustache standing behind George, I have no idea. But I admire them all for taking tea with their dogs.

Tea with James J. Taylor

Tea Sand Sculpture

James J. Taylor’s only tools were his hands – and a stick to finish off the delicate details of his sand sculptures. This postcard dates comes from Atlantic City, in 1906, but Taylor did sand sculptures in his home of Asbury Park and on the west coast as well. Born in 1860, he began sculpting in sand when he was 28; he could gather about $30 in tips for a sculpture and made more by selling postcards such as this one. A California newspaper noted:

“Taylor does not exert himself unless there is a goodly crowd on the strand, for he has followed the work so long that he has grown worldly-wise. Sculpture in the sand requires of the artist that he ‘start at the top’ … for his material slips and falls, and an unnecessary touch may mean the sudden destruction of a portion of his subject. And an accident counts for a good deal, as the sand subject cannot be built up so easily as it is cut out. A figure like that of the woman and child takes about two hours’ work… His work is done within a few feet of the water’s edge. The sand must be a little damp. Rain spoils it. The dampness must be afforded by salt water. The sand on this coast the artist has found to be flat and not so compact as the eastern sand. It contains, he says, a large amount of ash.”

Did he feel a pang of regret when the tide came in and washed away his work?

“Not unless there’s a crowd of people around admiring it. The material is still there and I can do the work again.”