I normally would not purchase, nor do I collect "Black
Americana" postcards as I find most of them to be degrading,
condescending, and very stereotypical. (At least
this one doesn't depict a little boy sitting on a watermelon and I have seen
several of those.) I purchased this card because it is the first
"Private Mailing Card" I
have seen addressed to Providence, RI.
A short history of "Privately
Produced Postcards" and the text of the message follows.
PRODUCED POSTCARD HISTORY
On May 19, 1898, the United States Congress
enacted a law giving private printers permission to print and sell postcards.
These cards were all issued with the inscription "Private Mailing
Card" and are referred to by collectors as PMC's. On December 24, 1901
permission was given to use the word Postcard on the back of the cards These
undivided back, (only the address was to appear on the back) postcards were
issued until 1907. (See: Snuff
Mill Post Card - 1906)
On March 1, 1907; the first "Divided
Back Postcards" were issued, which made it possible to place both the address and a
short message on the back of the card. Most of these cards were produced in
Germany and were of very good quality. (See:
Harbor - Block Island Postcard - 1912)
In 1915 as a result of World War I, it was no
longer possible to get this high quality cards and United States printers began
producing their own postcards. This began the era of the "White Bordered
Postcards," which lasted from 1915. to 1930. (See:
Landing Postcard - 1920s)
Beginning around 1930, American printers
began producing postcards on paper with a high rag content. These cards are
known as "Linen Postcards" and are quite popular with collectors. (See:
River Bridge Postcard)
The modern postcard era began in 1939 with
the introduction of the "Photo-Chrome Postcard,"
which combined vivid colors with
crisp and clear graphics. (See:
Post Office Postcard - 1961)
This card was sent to Mrs. Charles Warren in
Providence, Rhode Island by C. Warren from Jacksonville, Florida. I assume that
C. Warren is the Charles who is married to Mrs. Warren. He seems quite
surprised at such pleasant weather in the month of January. It appears that
Jacksonville is a short stopover on a continuing trip to the island of Jamaica.
I can not tell from the short message if the trip is for business or pleasure.
The card was sent in 1903 although by this time regular
undivided back postcards were available. Perhaps this card was an old holdover
bought in a small country store.
Jacksonville, Fla. Jan. 14 - 1903 -
We are beginning now to get a little better idea of Fla. Today has been quite
warm just like spring weather and we have been out seeing more of the city. I
have not room here to tell you what we saw. I hope will come later in a letter
- but you will be glad to know that we think we have found a way of getting to
Jamaica after all. We leave here tomorrow and reach Miami Friday night.