Quote and Credit

Quote and Credit


Uldine Mabelle Utley Signs and Wonders Child Evangelist Girl Preacher with God's Photographer at Work

Uldine Mabelle Utley, a "signs and wonders" child evangelist. She received a vision in 1921 at the age of 9 and the long-winded little girl commenced teaching. Her devotees wept, trembled and spoke in tongues. She preached at Madison Square Garden in 1925 to 14,000. At age 26 she married salesman Wilber Eugene Langkop, who promptly committed her to a mental institution and divorced her. From that point on, she was in and out of various institutions and hospitals until her death in 1995

Selected images from the Uldine Mabelle Utley House Organ and Newsletter "The Rose of Sharon" Bound volume, issues number 1 to number 12, 1925. Collection Jim Linderman

To SEE my blog of similar material, click OLD TIME RELIGION

Modern House Modern Garage Sundeck...Heaven? or TOYTOWN

A project for you and the kids this weekend. Click to Enlarge, print, color, cut, fold.

Assorted cards from Toytown Shredded Wheat Premiums, 1946 (set of 36, "Three in each box") Collection Jim Linderman

Welcome to the Neighborhood!

"Exhibit at Houghton Lake, Mich." (Real Estate Office) EKO Real Photo Postcard c. 1945 Collection Jim Linderman

Byrd, Ice Bird, Global Warming, Climate Change and the Chemical State of H20

It is "climate change" not "global warming." Every day I hear some misguided, misled and misinformed Fat Rush fan say "it's colder than ever...so much for global warming." First of all, Fat Rush is an ENTERTAINER, not a SCIENTIST... an increasingly dangerous one. Secondly, global warming means a change in weather patterns, not simply that it might get hot. Our weather is now the weather which used to be in Seattle, and I'm 2000 miles east of there. We've had a pounding "winter of a century" and a drenching "wet spring of a century" two years in a row, while California bakes and burns. The earth is a closed system. All that moisture changing from one physical and chemical state (ice) to another (rain) has to go somewhere. It seems to be going here. Admiral Byrd, shown as a penguin in an early child's game, traveled to the North Pole in 1926 and the South Pole in 1928. He wouldn't recognize either place today, and I think I know which way his political opinions would lean.

Admiral Byrd Game Card, c. 1940 Collection Jim Linderman

Woodstock, The Band, and the Anagram Photographer

Woodstock. It is curious to this day why the only band who actually both LIVED there and performed at the gig has to this day not had their set shown or released. Most folks don't even know The Band were there. At the same time plans were being made for the giant festival, The Band were living right down the road, practicing every day and in the woodshed with Dylan, another well-known, though reclusive resident I mentioned in an earlier post. Bob didn't make it, despite rumors he would. His backing band did...a full set of ten songs which have never been put on a compilation or added to endless reissues of "bonus" material on editions of the still essential film. In Levon's autobiography he claims it was because they forgot to turn Robbie's microphone off before the performance. (Personally, I like Robertson's voice, but he was no Levon Helm , Rick Danko or Richard Manuel) The set has been bootlegged, of course.

There is another angle to the story not told enough. While Dylan was healing up, drying out and raising a family nearby, very few pictures of him came out. Being fan, I was always glad to see the few that did, including a famous luminous shot of a 28 year old healthy gentleman Bob in pressed pegged pants leaning against an old car, surrounded by an aura of pink which ran on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post. A few more trickled out, notably the striking, in fact now legendary photos of the boys in The Band. They were credited to one Elliott Landy. I always thought Landy, who happens to have a last name which is an anagram of Dylan...were one and the same. By that time, serious Dylan students were used to his attempts at preserving a life by hiding his under myth, I always just assumed he picked up a camera and took the shots himself. Whoever did certainly had Dylan's artistic skill (or extraordinary access)

Well, Elliott Landy is in fact a photographer, and a good one indeed. Many of his photos have become both iconic and emblematic of the era. The most comprehensive catalog of his work has just been released, shown here, and the photos are beautiful, colorful, crystal clear. Although of the time, they somehow manage to avoid the psychedelic claptrap of the period (something The Band did as well) The set? Not The Band's best, which is still to say better than almost everything else.

The woman above? Placed there by the photographer to make the boys smile, something they didn't do enough. It worked!

Elliott Landy's Website

The Next Best Blog...Fringepop

So when one of my heroes announced she was going to start a blog, I knew it would be good. It is. I approached Astrid a year ago for help with a book idea. I hope to get back to it one day, but what with harvest time approaching and my required four hour nap...who knows when. She was immediately helpful, forthcoming, charming, friendly, open...and in no time a very, very good friend from afar. She is also beautiful and a genius, her significant guy is buff and a genius, their art, photography and book collection is as extraordinary and unique as it is rare and unusual...and now having been carefully born it is being shared on their blog FRINGEPOP. Worse than all that, they are both frightfully young, well educated and perfectly positioned for the future. I hate them. But I love their blog, and you will too. I expect it to grow like kudzu on a steamy damp day and if you would like to get in from the get go...now would be the time. (The painting is by Mark Ryden, the juxtaposed images by Astrid)

Selected images from FRINGEPOP the blog.

The Philosophical Underpinnings of Mail Art (and some advice from my mother)

Receiving a hand-decorated piece of mail from a loved one is always a pleasant surprise. Unfortunately, it is a practice falling by the wayside along with everything else done by hand. You can "personalize" an email but must use freehand software...or all you are doing is selecting a pre-designed piece of digitized junk some programmer thought was cute. And you are probably downloading it from a company stealing your IP address. If it blinks, squeaks, dances or wiggles it is even worse.

Also annoying is when mail art becomes a "movement" with philosophical underpinnings like Dada, Fluxus, Merz, the Mail Art Network and such. I know there are all sorts of rational artistic justifications for the practice but it seems for the most part to be made up of people who are a little too impressed with their own cleverness. (And those who like to tease the post office, which along with the public library is one of the few true bargains left) Want a conceptual foundation from my mother? To get mail, you have to send mail. Not deep, but true.

Group of Handmade envelopes, postcards, etc. c. 1900-1940. Collection Jim Linderman

The Banner Line The String Show Ten-in-One Sideshow At the Circus in Black and White

Click to Enlarge

These circus banners, when strung in a row to attract customers, were known in the trade as a Banner Line or The String Show. "Ten in One" refers to the usual number of acts. The Lincoln Brothers, who apparently had only eight acts...lasted only a few months.

For other sideshow photographs posted on Dull Tool Dim Bulb, click blue "sideshow" subject heading below.

Anonymous Photo Snapshot 1921 Collection Jim Linderman

Hell on Earth, Logical as Hell and the Worth of Man (73 cents)

Religious Tracts 1944-1946. According to the imprint published "Opposite Penn Terminal" in NYC where I suspect they were handed out.

Other titles in the series of 21 include:

Advance Information
You Need This!
Carrier of the Keys
Standard Equipment
Makes Sense, Doesn't it?
Why Go Hungry?
What's God Like?
Direction for Use.

Five Tiny Religious Tracts, 1944-1946 Collection Jim Linderman


Eliza, Uncle Sam and the Most Beautiful Woman in the World Profiles in Crime

James Montgomery Flagg was at one time the highest paid illustrator in America, having painted the famous Uncle Sam "I WANT YOU" poster, (actually a self-portrait in which he added a white beard to avoid using a model). He did use models however, eventually producing thousands and thousands of works for magazine covers and books. He was also judge of beauty, for he called the above woman the most beautiful in the world and used her likeness in many of his illustrations. This is Julia Eliza Bruns, a silent film actress from St. Louis who succumbed, as they say, to fame in a big way. This is the only photograph I can find of her (!) but trust there are mug shots somewhere...you can trace her decline on the web. Arrests, drug addiction, jewel thefts to pay her pusher and finally death of alcoholism in a fleabag Manhattan hotel. She even published articles about her drug addiction. A sad tale, and one which has become cliche...but this is the real deal. If she was in fact the most beautiful woman in the world, it is odd there are no photographs available on the web...and stranger still the press touched her up in this 1924 wire photo describing one of her arrests. Maybe they caught her on a bad day. Two years later she was dead.

Original embellished press photograph, Sept 1925, Collection Jim Linderman

What Does YOUR Swimming Suit Reveal #2

Still (or finally) summer, so an excuse for another photo of beach beauties.

Hand-Tinted Photograph, circa 1950 Collection Jim Linderman

A Mountain Lion Cub Captures Kid Johnson's Heart RPPC

Hand written on reverse "Kid Johnson's Mountain Lion when about 18 months old. Captured near Glacier Park Mont. March 1925. Now at Manhattan Mont. Showing a hold up stunt" and dated Feb. 11th 1926.

A powerful and rich photograph. Folks who collect pictures are often bitten and smitten briefly...an image is found, obtained, enjoyed and filed. Something about this one makes it an exception. Was there love and respect between the two, or a relationship based on something else? Cats are hard to train, and Kid Johnson seems a proud, loving trainer. On the other hand, we ourselves have been "trained" by now to believe animals belong in the wild, but who is to say here? Who captured who? I suspect life was difficult for all living creatures in Montana in 1926, be one collared or not. It was probably a "hold-up" stunt as Kid Johnson would feign a weapon and direct the performer to "stick-em-up." Did Kid take the time to lay out the canvas backdrop, or the photographer. Were they performing on a street corner for coins, or was the star performer taken out specifically for the photo shoot. Six months before this photo was taken, Manhattan, Montana was struck by an earthquake which damaged half the town's few structures. Manhattan thrived producing Malt until prohibition in 1916...I do not know how either event affected Kid and his pet, if at all. The town today has some 1500 inhabitants. Dig further and you will find the well-known "Real Food for Real People" advertising campaign was filmed there. I don't think that would surprise the folks at PETA.

Real Photo Postcard 1926. Collection Jim Linderman


Rebus is not the name of a prominent country singer's spouse. It is the use of a pictogram to represent a syllabic sound. This adapts "pictograms" into "phonograms." The writing of correspondence in rebus form became popular in the 18th century and continued into the 19th century. Lewis Carroll wrote children picture-puzzle rebus letters, nonsense letters, and looking-glass letters, which had to be held in front of a mirror to be read. Rebus letters served either as a sort of code or simply as a pastime. They persisted in cheap magazines in dentist offices for a while, but the practice seems to have disappeared along with my deciduous teeth and I find the process just as tedious as a trip there today. Don't waste your time. Shown here?

Auto Rebus
The Cannibal's Puzzle
Handsome Harry's Problem
I See You Are Easy
Summer is Here (excerpt)

Group of REBUS images, Collection Jim Linderman


I am often reminded I'm so far from being a writer, there should be a quarter slot on my keyboard like the tire inflation machine at the car wash...oh, if I could edit. The internet lets us all spill words like flour in the grocery aisle, except no one comes along to clean up the mess. Here is the latest humbling example of a real writer, a blog with choice words, nothing to sweep up and nice full tires.


Anon, The Second Worst Cartoonist in History Privately Printed Postcard Set

The only thing worse than worst is one worser. This one comes close. A few months ago, I profiled the world's worst cartoonist, one Rod Raymond and his privately published set of dreadful, dreary, gruesome and just plain bad homemade postcards. (See Dull Tool Dim Bulb of June 25 2009) Rod retains his title, but barely. Along comes "Anon" to give Rod a run for his money. Again, self-published. Unfortunately, this time anonymous, he didn't even sign his name. The least he could have done was typed it. Whoever he was, I presume he learned "there ain't no money in postcards"...something I hear at antique shows all the time.

Set of five anonymous privately published postcards c. 1950. Collection Jim Linderman

If the Shoe Fits, Mail it. Handmade Postcard Folk Art Foot

Handmade Postcard in the Shape of a Shoe, mailed c. 1906 Collection Jim Linderman

Mell Kilpatrick Weegee of the West and the Dashboard Camera

Mell Kilpatrick was a self-taught master photographer with Weegee skill and fortitude. In fact, the precious few times his name is mentioned, Weegee's often follows. Living in Orange County when it was literally a county of oranges, Mell was attracted to photography young and certainly had the right eye. In the only photo I've found of him, he is posing as if squinting into a lens finder. Like a Weegee in sunshine, he traveled light...camera, flash, tripod and a trench coat when the road was slick. But he also had a camera mounted on his dashboard pointing through the windshield and I am sure these photos were shot with it. Like a hard-boiled P.O, whenever California blood was spilled, he was there. Crime, Crash, Insurance Fraud...he squinted through them all in black and white. A James Ellroy with a speed graphic camera and a police-band radio. He is probably best known for the iconic photo "It's lucky when you live in America" which depicts a car overturned in a field after having crashed through a billboard advertising a mountain fresh brand of beer. These photos of Mell's skid marks, so to speak, are mild compared to the gruesome carnage shown in his work (and which should be shown to every driver using their cellphone)

In an extraordinary article which draws comparisons with the car crash silkscreens of Andy Warhol and the car crash fetishists of J. G. Ballard, writer Nathan Callahan attributes Kilpatrick's vision to those he saw while working as a projectionist at the Laguna and Balboa Theaters in the late 1940's, where he watched film noir masterpieces while waiting to change the reels. He learned well and got used to the dark. All these photos have his identification stamp or notes, but only one provides the time: 5 am.

Kilpatrick's negative collection, well organized and labeled, sat for 35 years until being turned up by photography collector and dealer Jennifer Dumas. She compiled them into a coffee table book "Car Crashes & Other Sad Stories" in 2000 published by Taschen, linked below.

Remarkably, there was another side to Mell. As Orange County turned into Disneyland (literally) Mell turned his camera to the construction. Soon he was loaning his darkroom to other Disney photographers, and Uncle Walt himself granted him full access to the construction site. Mell's granddaughter has published no less than five books of his early Disneyland photographs. As Callahan reports, she "sold the most gruesome ones...they brought a bad vibe to the house."

Forensic Photography would seem to be a growth industry, what with all the teenage texting going on at 75 MPH. It was probably a good gig for Mell...even if most of them seem to have been taken at 5:00 AM.

Set of Original Accident Scene Photographs by Mell Kilpatrick, Each 8 x 10. Circa 1952 Collection Jim Linderman

Superior Magic-Mirror acrylic Lacquer Finish

1961 Salesman Sample Color Chevrolet Color Chart Collection Jim Linderman

David Slayeth Goliath with his Glow Stick (A SUPER-GLO PICTURE)

I hope some kind of 50's radiation hasn't messed up my scanner here, I tried to "glow" them but the chemicals are all used up. Glow-in-the-dark products contain phosphors. A phosphor is a substance that radiates visible light after being energized. They are photoluminescent...that is energized by light. Still seems like a miracle to me. In the Bible story, little David takes the sword from Goliath and cuts off his head. That seems kinda brutal...all this time I just thought he bopped him in the noggin with a pebble from his "old-style" slingshot.

"SUPER-GLO" Picture Card (EXPOSE TO LIGHT-SEE IT GLOW IN THE DARK) circa 1950 Collection Jim Linderman