|Answer to Quiz #69 - July 21, 2006
|What is the latest date this picture postcard could have been produced?
What is the earliest date the card could have been mailed?
|Submitted by Gwen Upton. Click on thumbnail to see larger image.
For a higher resolution image, click here.
The latest date the card could have been produced was
Presidential Election Day, November 3, 1908.
The earliest date the card could have been mailed was December 1, 1908,
although it was probably mailed late spring/early summer 1909.
|This image of the back
of the card showing its
it was mailed
Aug. 14, 1909.
|Latest Date the Card Could Have Been Produced
The question about the latest date the postcard could have been produced was
somewhat ambiguous, as pointed out by Charles Hagler, Reference Librarian at the
Library of Michigan:
I did say the picture on the card was of Main Street, Rushville, Nebraska, 1908 but
maybe I misunderstood you when you said produced, are you talking about the
manufacturing of the postcard or when the photograph was shot? ....My 1915 date was
from when they stop manufacturing that style of postcard.
Library of Michigan
We actually meant the latest date the picture on the card could have been taken. Based
on this interpretation, we offer the following information.
|William Jennings Bryan's 1908 Candidacy for President
|The banner "Bryan's Head Quarters" on the clothing store relates to William Jennings
Bryan's third and last unsuccessful run for the Presidency in 1908. He was defeated by
William Howard Taft. The latest date the picture on the card could have been taken is
election day, November 3, 1908. Presumably the Headquarters was dismantled shortly
after Bryan lost the election, and the building reverted back to a clothing store.
Some readers guessed that the headquarters was related to one of Bryan's other
campaigns, either in 1896 or 1900, or that the headquarters belonged to his younger
brother Charles Wayland Byran, who served as the mayor of Lincoln, Nebraska, and
who ran several times (successfully and unsuccessfully) for Governor of the state. But
the picture on the posters in the headquarters' windows is the same as the one featured
in Wikipedia's article on William Jennings Bryan taken in 1907 at
rules out Bryan's earlier campaigns and any of his brother's.
William Jennings Bryan (March 19, 1860 –
July 26, 1925) was an American lawyer,
statesman, and politician. He was a three-time
Democratic Party nominee for President of
the United States noted for his deep,
commanding voice. Bryan was a devout
Presbyterian, a strong proponent of popular
democracy, an outspoken critic of banks and
railroads, a leader of the silverite movement in
the 1890s, a dominant figure in the
Democratic Party, a peace advocate, a
prohibitionist, an opponent of Darwinism, and
one of the most prominent leaders of the
Progressive Movement. He was called "The
|Clarance Darrow and William
Jennings Bryan during the Scopes
Money Trial, 1925
Great Commoner" because of his total faith in the goodness and rightness of the
He was one of the most energetic campaigners in American history, inventing the
national stumping tour. In his presidential bids, he promoted Free Silver in 1896,
anti-imperialism in 1900, and antitrust in 1908, calling on all Democrats to renounce
conservatism, fight the trusts and big banks, and embrace progressive ideas. President
Woodrow Wilson appointed him Secretary of State in 1913, but Bryan resigned in
protest against Wilson's policies in 1915. In the 1920s he was a strong supporter of
Prohibition, but is probably best known today for his negative criticism of Darwinism,
which culminated in the Scopes Trial in 1925. Read more about William Jennings Bryan
Charles Wayland Bryan was the younger brother of William Jennings Bryan. Bryan
served as mayor of Lincoln, Nebraska from 1915 to 1917, and again from 1935 to
1937. He also served as Governor of Nebraska from 1923 to 1925 and again from 1931
to 1935. He was an unsuccessful candidate for governor in 1926, 1928, and 1938. If
the headquarters were those of Charles (and not William), the card would have had to
have been taken before 1938. Since he was not from Rushville but from Linclon; there
would be no reason to have a Bryan "Head Quarters" in Rushville unless it was for a
statewide office like Governor. Assuming the headquarters was that of Charles
Wayland Bryan, the latest date the postcard could have been produced would be 1938.
|Earliest Date the Card Could Have Been Mailed
There were several answers that were given by our readers about the earliest date the
card could have been mailed, based on the patent for the Ferris wheel, the date of the
1908 Democratic National Convention where Jennings Bryan was nominated for
president, depending on when Rushville's electrical power plant was built, or when it
first had telephones. (See more info below on these items.)
The correct earliest date is given by the stamp in the upper right
hand corner of the back. According to
QuickChart: Franklin Head One Cent Stamps, Series of 1908,
it is Scott #331 or Scott #331a. The stamp can be identified as
either of these kinds by its various shades of green, and by the 12
perforations that appear on each side. The Scott #331 has yellow
green and the #331a does not, but it is hard for me to distinguish
which color scheme is present without pictures of both stamps to compare ours to.
The Scott #331a stamp was sold in booklet form, so that a #331a would be perforated
differently along its edges depending on its position in the book. Another way of telling
the #331 from the #331a would be to examine its watermark, but without being able to
physically examine the stamp, this is impossible to do.
Aside from providing an exact earliest date according to the type of stamp used, the
message on the postcard indicates that at the earliest, it was probably mailed several
months later. Based on the writer's comment that "The rain ruined all my hay on Rush
Creek," the earliest date is pushed back to late spring or early summer 1909 after the
next hay harvest.
|Extra Clues to the Earliest and Latest Dates from Postcard Styles
|Possible earliest date according to its style:
March 1, 1907 - Picture postcards with a divided back are printed for the first time.
Divided Back Era (1907-1914)
Postcards with a divided back were permitted March 1, 1907. The address to be
written on the right side and the left side was for writing messages. Many millions of
cards were published in this era. Up to this point most postcards were printed in
Germany which was far ahead of this country in the lithographic processes. With the
advent of World War I the supply of postcards had to come from England and the
N.B. Quiz #46, January 28, 2006 on the Jed Prouty Tavern featured a divided back
postcard. See www.forensicgenealogy.info/contest_46_results.html.
Possible latest date according to its style:
White Border Era (1915-1930)
Most of our postcards were printed in the USA during this period. To save ink, a
border was left around the view thus we call them "White Border" cards. High cost of
labor, inexperience and public taste caused production of poor quality cards. High
competition in a narrowing market caused many publishers to go out of business.
|Clues from Other Photographs of Rushville Point to 1908
Another early view of the west side of
Main Street. The building to the
right with the pointed top was the
location of the Pudelko store. To the
left of it is a merchantile store and
furniture store (also seen in our quiz
picture). The electric plant was built in
1910 and telephone service started in
1913, so this photo would date from
around that time. However, I have
seen photos from 1908 that show
power poles as well, so the poles
might date to a few years before that.
An early view of the west side of Main Street, looking south. To the right is the
Stockman's Hotel (aka Evans Hotel, and the Pfister Hotel prior to that - visible in our
quiz picture). The building with the pointed top is now the Pedelko Store (originally the
Ben Franklin 5 & 10, also visible in the quiz photo). See
www1.cedar-rapids.net/hindman/RUSHVILL.HTM for more vintage pictures of
Population (year 2000): 999. Estimated population
in July 2005: 902 (-9.7% change)
Males: 468 (46.8%), Females: 531 (53.2%)
Sheridan County, Zip code: 69360
Median resident age: 40.6 years
Median household income: $27,361 (year 2000)
Median house value: $38,400 (year 2000)
Races in Rushville:
White Non-Hispanic (76.8%)
American Indian (20.9%)
Two or more races (3.6%)
Ancestries: German (24.7%), English (11.9%),
Irish (10.8%), United States (5.1%), Norwegian
(3.8%), Dutch (3.2%).
Elevation: 3746 feet
Land area: 1.2 square miles
For population 25 years and over in Rushville:
High school or higher: 88.6%
Bachelor's degree or higher: 14.9%
Graduate or professional degree: 2.1%
Mean travel time to work: 18.5 minutes
For population 15 years and over in Rushville:
Never married: 23.0%
Now married: 55.6%
1.4% Foreign born
Population change in the 1990s: -122 (-10.9%)
Comments from our readers:
An interesting comment – non-Bryan related: http://www.ci.rushville.ne.us/communit.
"Buffalo Bill" Cody headquartered in Rushville when he was hiring talent on the
reservation for his wild west shows. Cody paid the Indians in script that was
redeemable only at the Asay Store while the performers were in Rushville. Cody always
stayed with the Asay family when in Rushville. (It has been said that Cody entertained
Mrs. Asay on picnics at the Niobrara River while Mr. Asay tended the store.) In later
years, Cody returned to Rushville to film a re-enactment of the "Battle of Wounded
Knee." The Pine Ridge Indian Reservation continues to be a major part of the Rushville
So Possibly, the store with the Jennings banner, may be the ASAY store- and the show
may be the Buffalo Bill show? Although I’m not sure he would have had the “Electric
Show” etc., but it’s an intriguing possibility. Mary Fraser
The C.E. who sent the card may be Clarissa (Clara) Walgreen Evans, who was a Rex
Evans' a farmer, wife in Rushville 1930 census.
I can see what look to be power wires going to the building to the left of the Electric
Theatre and to the Bryan Headquarters building I can't be sure they are power lines or
telephone lines. I doubt that telegraph lines would be going to every building especially
during this time frame when Marconi and gang were working on wire telegraphy.
Remember the Titanic and David Sarnoff receiving the news of the Titanic sinking in
New York from the wireless on board the rescue ship in April 1912. I wish I could see
the campaign poster clearer to see if it is William Jennings Bryan's mug shot on the
poster. His brother Charles always seem to have bow ties on, whereas William's
pictures show him in regular ties.
I can see the cow now, but it is not clear on the scan. Fred Stuart
I completely missed the Ferris Wheel. I assume that the device had to be portable and I
found the patent number and date of issuance: http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-....
The patent was issued April 16, 1918. With all this in mind. It is possible that the photo
was taken in 1922 or so which would explain the dress, the Ferris Wheel and the
Political headquarters. Evidently, prior to the telephone popularity, postcards were
huge. It is possible that someone had some of the Franklin 1 centers and since Gordon
and Rushville were next to one another the postcard was sent just to use up the stamp
on a current postcard. I could not get the word "infantry" on the card as it was
addressed to Miss. Could the word have been infancy?
Thats MY story and I'm stickin to it. LOL I spent way too much time diggin on this
one. Fun tho. Still could not find out anything on Nora the Phillipino Wild Girl.
I had a lot of fun with it. My husband Bill worked for the IHS at Pine Ridge, 1973-75,
so he knew Rushville and Hays Springs very well. I found out about the stamps
through Google, too. I have a slew of sisters and nieces and nephews who love history
so I have sent the puzzle site to them. Don't be surprised to see some Bates and Bethea
responses, as well as Laughlin, Longest, and Corhern. Judy Bethea
The sign that intrigues me is the "Wild Girls" one with Nora Phillipino - I wonder who
she is? Googling her name turns up nothing, but using "nora filipino" turns up lots of
links to a current porn star. Randy Seaver
Colleen, Wow, this was a surprise! You are very kind and can make a person feel so
good. I really didn't think I would be right, but your email just made my evening. I
thought about the quiz off and on today and really expected this to be the loosing one. I
wanted to find the Electric Theater and Nora Phillipino/Wild Girls, but there just wasn't
anything, even under sideshows or circuses. I thought that would set a time. Did you
find anything on either of them?
There were so many views of Rushville, I feel like a resident. I read somewhere that
William Jennings Bryan had started the practice of speaking from railroad cars on his
campaigns, so I tried to connect that with Rushville being a railroad town. I just
couldn't identify the stamp and today I read in the Ancestry magazine of a website for
stamp identifying. That may have helped. So many possibilities to decipher, but along
the way I always seem to learn a lot and you are so right about people's lives frozen in
time in these pictures. That is something I never paid the slightest attention to and
since working with genealogy, and examining your quizzes, I enjoy looking at all
pictures for what I can learn from the background as well as the people.
|Congratulations to Our Winners
Stan Read Patrick Carney
Judy Bethea Elaine C. Hebert
Fred Stuart Mary Fraser
Mike Pfister Larry Adams
Marty Guidry Randy Seaver
Marilyn Hamill Kelly Fetherlin
Bob Witherspoon Liz Mackie
Charles Hagler Eva Royal
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