Holtwood Dam

  In October 1905 McCall’s Ferry Power Co. began construction in Martic Township, Lancaster County, on what would be the second of four hydroelectric dams built to harness the power of the Susquehanna River below Harrisburg, Dauphin County. Twenty miles from the tidewater of the Chesapeake Bay, it was then the third longest dam in the world, built of solid concrete, 55 feet high. The...
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Luna Park, Scranton

Luna Park appears to be a magical place in this postcard. In the brief decade it existed from 1906 to 1916 in Scranton, Lackawanna County, it offered entry into another world for the admission price of only 10 cents. Located across a footbridge east of Nay Aug Park along the Roaring Brook, Luna Park was the creation of Pittsburgh entrepreneur Frederick Ingersoll (1876–1927). Ingersoll opened his...
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Lewistown Narrows

  The contrasting relief of Shade and Blue mountains with the Juniata River Valley creates a magnificent landscape near the border of Juniata and Mifflin counties. That splendor belies the obstacles that the topography has presented for engineers throughout the centuries. Archaeological excavations of the Lewistown Narrows within Juniata County have revealed artifacts dating back nearly...
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Punxsutawney Post Office

Although Punxsutawney, Jefferson County, is best known as the home of a renowned weather-forecasting groundhog, it is also a community of notable historic buildings, including the grand Classical Revival U.S. post office shown in this circa 1916 postcard. The Punxsutawney Post Office, with its imposing Ionic limestone columns, was the hub of the community’s mail services from its completion in...
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Camp Beaver

  “Hello Mary” wrote Frank Lloyd. “I’m in camp and have a fine time. You should be here.” Lloyd was at Camp Beaver, a 1914 National Guard encampment at Indiana, Indiana County. The camp was named in honor of James A. Beaver (1837-1914), decorated Civil War officer, judge of Pennsylvania’s Superior Court and governor of the Commonwealth, 1887-91. The entire National Guard of Pennsylvania was...
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Donald R. Brown and the Institute of American Deltiology

Donald R. Brown may well be the Dr. Albert C. Barnes of the postcard world. An ardent deltiologist, he promotes postcards as resources for the scholarly study of society, culture and heritage. In 70-odd years of collecting postcards, he’s amassed an unrivaled private collection, housed in his Institute of American Deltiology (IAD), an incorporated nonprofit foundation, museum and research center...
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J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital, Huntingdon, Pa.

“Son arrived this eve 730.” I. John Schipper, born in 1878 in Pekin, Illinois, wrote to a Mrs. F.L. Velde, also of Pekin, on July 5 in the early 1920s – the year is unreadable in the postmark. “Edith is doing fine,” he continued. “In this hospital Room marked X. Tell all my friends please.” Schipper, a resident of Six Mile Run, Huntingdon County, at the time, was manager of mines for the...
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Monument to Confederate Soldiers

In 1898 Congress passed the Private Mailing Card Act allowing the printing and publishing of postcards by private companies and launched a craze in the early years of the 20th century. Prior to this legislation only the U.S. Postal System was authorized to produce these cards. Billions of what are known as “real photo” postcards – depicting rural villages, picturesque panoramas, community...
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Postcards Can Be Valuable

William E. Stewart of Arnold, Pennsylvania, may have one of the largest collection of postcards in America. And, in addition, he has a wealth of information on what the cards depict. The postcard originated in Austria in the 1860’s with a young professor. Dr. Emmanuel Herman. The first official postal card appeared on October 1, 1869. Soon Germany and Great Britain introduced similar...
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Soldier’s National Monument, Gettysburg

We just had the thrill of standing just where Lincoln stood when he dedicated this beautiful cemetery,” wrote “Net” to a Mrs. Grace Utter of Lake Beulah, Wis­consin, on July 19, 1938. Net penned her note on a post-card depicting the Soldiers’ National Monument, the centerpiece of the Soldiers National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Adams County. Published by Marken and Bielfeld,...
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