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The Automotive Chronicles

Monthly newsletter published by McLellan's Automotive History. Dedicated to literature collectors, restorers, museums, publishers, manufacturers and investors who collect and preserve automotive literature
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January 2005 Issue
 
ARTICLE
 
Postcard Collectors Paradise
By Sharon McLellan
 
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Postcards can be used to tell a story and nowhere is that story more prominent than with the automotive industry. Companies printed photographs of their cars in postcard format to distribute to customers (and young children) as an economical way to promote the new models. These postcards could then be mailed to family and friends and further advertise the company's product. Who wouldn't respond to this young woman enjoying her bright red Playboy Convertible.


 
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Themes chosen for the photographs often reflect a "good times" philosophy a family enjoying a picnic, which they drove to in their new car; race cars for racing enthusiasts; sporting activities such as camping, tennis, swimming or horseback riding.
       
 
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Other photographs simply shows the best features of the models by "posing" them on a stage with one or more pretty girls or in a romantic scene such as outdoors with fireworks surrounding a couple.
       
 
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Oldsmobile, in 1969, chose themes from movies as backdrops for its models.
       
 
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Luxury cars and limousines are favorites with collectors.
       
 
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And the celebrity postcard with a focus on either a movie star or a well known race car driver is always popular.
   
 

Historical Note:
According to www.ShilohPostcards.com, "the first postal card was suggested by Dr. Emanuel Herrmann, in 1869, and was accepted by the Hungarian government in the same year. The first regularly printed card appeared in 1870, a historical card, produced in connection with the Franco-German War. The first advertising card appeared in 1872 in Great Britain. The first German card appeared in 1874. Cards showing the Eiffel Tower in 1889 & 1890 gave impetus to the postcard heyday a decade later. A Heligoland card of 1889 is considered the first multi-colored card ever printed."

 
 
The Automotive Chronicles, January 2005
 
 
 
 
 
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