Family Stories

Dating Old Photo Postcards

Dating Old Photo Postcards

In addition to the postcards that everyone sends or collects from vacations, in the early years of the 20th century people often had a photograph taken and put on a postcard.  Fortunately for us the manufactures of the photographic paper for the post card, have information on the back to help date the card.  Playle has a wonderful website to help us.

Scan_Pic1098 2

The stamp box gives us the clue to the postcard’s date.  It contains the letters AZO, with four triangles pointing up – dated 1904-1918.


This is a great example of the photo postcards – or Real Photo PostCards (RPPC) as per the Playle website.  This is a favorite of mine, as it is an outdoor scene.  The horse and buggy with driver reminds of my grandmother, Mary Alice Montgomery Carrico, who drove to church and town in a buggy with her beautiful roan, Nipsy.  Nipsy was grandmother’s horse and was quite partial to her.  When the horse became ill, grandmother sat with him, his head in her lap!  Even in her late years tears would form when she talked of Nipsy!  In the above photo three of the four people are named, and I believe it is inferred that the woman who sent the postcard is the driver of the buggy.


Mrs. R. E. Sutton

Well, this card was given to me to send to you. I guess you know this old lady. This little girl is Jessie Johnson. She is the one that thinks so much of me. That is Ella Shellhorn that I liked up there by the fence, and that young man is Edwin Uulrickson, standing back of the buggy. This is given in remembrance of Mrs. M. M. Shellhorn.

Do you have any old photo postcards of your family?

Any thoughts?

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