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Dating RPPC photo postcards

October 27, 2017

Dating RPPC photo postcards

This week I’ll share a tiny bit of new knowledge gained in my researching items being added to the store inventory.

I’ve have a nice vintage photo postcard of a kid in a soapbox derby. No identifying location or year…or so I thought. As I was doing a final magnifying glass look of the front, saw nothing. But on the back of the postcard, I noticed that in the area where the stamp is placed, instead of a generic box with something like ‘affix 1¢ postage’...there was a word: ‘VELOX’. I found that strange, so I researched what that text meant. It turns out that it is the paper used to make the RPPC (Real Picture Post Card), and even more interesting, based on the word and some other identifying marks, it can be used to date the image.

So…going to the website that listed this information (www.playle.com/realphoto/), I got VELOX…diamonds in four corners…:1907-1914.

I just happened to be listing two other RPPCs this week, and both have similar paper information. So this was timely.

A photo postcard of a WW1 American artillery soldier with AZO and 4 triangles pointed up: 1904-1918. And lastly, an RPPC of Billly Sunday evangelical preacher, with AZO and four squares...gives a date range of 1926-1940s. This last one is interesting, because there is a copyright date of 1908 on the front.

Another little useful ‘factlet’ for reseaching your RPPCs!

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