Quote and Credit

Quote and Credit


Ed Atop a Stack of Hay 68 Tons RPPC

"Well, Pauline, I've landed on the old homestead again. Left Portland March 20 and landed in Hayburn the following day. Did you ever see a picture of a real hay ride? This is one of myself and a hay stack on my place. I'm on top of the stack. I had 3 stacks like this last year."

Real Photo Postcard mailed from Idaho to Salt Lake City, Utah March 31, 1914 Collection Jim Linderman

Misdirection Magic and Michigan The Abbott's Institution of Magic

Did you ever want to get lost in a magical world? Go to Colon, Michigan. Home of Abbott's Magic for over 70 years, the 50,000 square foot shop and factory is the official home of magic. The catalog, which is now over 475 pages and from which I cribbed these beautiful, evocative images is not only still being produced, you can DOWNLOAD THE WHOLE THING FOR FREE! My treasured copy is #22 from 1976, but all the beautiful retro magical graphics are still in the digital catalog. And what a show it is...hundreds of tricks, books, machines, devices, card tricks...It is truly an amazing spectacle, and despite having one of the most entertaining collection of websites around (the site turns and twists from one video to another, vintage flicks of tricks run continuously, there is a live chat room for sharing, a used marketplace for, well...torture tricks) and that's not all. They also print a newsletter (The Newest Tops) act as a clearinghouse for traveling magicians, list shows...you name it. If misdirection or slight of hand is your thing, this is the place. Colon, Michigan is the burial place of Harry Blackstone. Over 1,000 magicians gather there every year for a convention. Harry would be pleased, and I suspect plenty of them make a pilgrimage to his resting place.

Archie Zimmerman: Carving like a Cartoonist

There are still 19th and early 20th century folk art collections and bodies of work to be found. I had thought the last gasp for searchers of work by undiscovered eccentric carvers may have been the first few years of Ebay, when folks in Middle-America started listing things they found in the attic as they learned to use their computers. Scarce few groups of work remain, but husband and wife team Heidi Kellner and Robert Zordani found some, the eccentric pieces of comic book carvings created by Archie Zimmerman. They won't change the world, and there have certainly been better folk artists, including many who worked in a similar manner. (Fred Alten, Earl Eyman and dozens more...whittling used to be done until the sun went ALL the way down) But the recently found cache is unique in their comic book quality. Each seems stretched and skewed in a way that characters in the Sunday Funnies and matinee cartoons used to be. Zimmerman passed away in 1961. A few examples are shown above, the biography and more examples of his zany creations are shown at the Z & K Antiques Website.

The Art of Oxymoron. Inside Outhouses at Alabam's RPPC

I had to ask around..."What's is called, you know...when you have, like, Jumbo Shrimp?" Oxymoron. I must be getting old. It might sound like an infomercial laundry product, but it turns out to be a wider phenom than I thought. Below is merely a few of the ones starting with the A. See them all at the HOME of the OXYMORON. Buffalo, Wyoming's once Alabam's "Soup or Service" station. Slogan? Don't go hungry or run short of gas." There must be a name for that too.

A Fine Mess
A just war
A little big
a little pregnant
A new classic
absolutely unsure
abundant poverty
Accidentally on Purpose
accurate estimate
accurate stereotype
Act Naturally
active retirement
actual reenactment
acute dullness
adult children
advanced BASIC
airline schedules
all alone
All natural artificial flavor
alone in a crowd
almost candid
Almost done
American culture
American education
American English
amicable divorce
among the first
Amtrak schedule
Anarchy Rules!
anticipating the unanticipated
Anti-Missile Missile
Auto Pilot
authentic reproduction
Awfully pretty

Alabam's Real Photo Postcard, circa 1955 Collection Jim Linderman

Domke and Da' Dinosaurs Prehistoric Meat-Eaters in Michigan

Pauldra Domke created a half-Bible, half-Dinosaur theme park on the shores of Lake Huron in Ossineke Michigan. He started in the 1930's. Known affectionately as "Uncle Paul" he delighted in painting gruesome drips of blood all over the big fellas, in particular the dropped Dino plopped on the ground as a wild dog-like creature rips his flesh above. I'm really sorry not to have color postcards! Guess what? STILL THERE.

Collection of Domke Dinosaur Real Photo Postcards, circa 1940. Collection Jim Linderman

Loew's Theaters Cover-Up (At the Movies and Meet the Press)

Press Photograph from 1939, a landmark year for the movie industry. Text on reverse, if you can believe it (and you can)..."Loew's Theaters Employes (sic) pasted paper panties on the undraped backs of 10,000 twin babies pictured on billboards throughout the city, after the District Attorney's office decided the posters were "indecent". The Pictures of Undiapered Infants had been displayed as a promotion stunt."
Original Press Photograph, 1939 Collection Jim Linderman

Special Temporary Oscar Post for Jeff Bridges

In hopes one of the most interesting, "normal" in every good way, talented and quietly politically correct genius actors wins tonight, a man who has entertained me from afar for some 40 years, I present Jeff Bridges State of the Art WEBSITE. That he is next playing Rooster Cogburn in a remake of True Grit with the Coen brothers is a gift of manna. Cross your fingers for the Dude.

Bear Rug Saturday Night Lazy Post

Amazing what one can (and used to) do with rags. I suspect we'll find out again soon. Group of outstanding hooked rugs from upcoming Brunk Auction, March 29 The Thomas A. Gray collection.

Soft Landing Vernacular Photograph Snapshot

Untitled Snapshot (Model Airplane on Bed) circa 1940 Collection Jim Linderman

A New site worth following: The Home of Folk Art

A very kind and generous profile below from the fairly new site "The Home of Folk Art" which is doing a wonderful job of reporting events and developments in the 20th century folk art field. Sharp, professional, good photos and links...It is nice to have them around. They brought an exhibit of William O. Golding (illustrated above from the exhibition at the Morris Museum of Art) to my attention, he was an exceptional fellow and far under-rated African-American Artist whose work I have always loved. I also learned from the site that the extraordinary environment known as "Margaret's Grocery" is being preserved. Good News! As I don't have time to keep up with these things like I should, it is a pleasure to have a "go-to" place and I suggest you bookmark and follow the site. Christian and Michelle Daniel maintain the site, and Christian has written a book on Visionary artist Minnie Evans, also from his state of North Carolina. Another splendid artist one can't say enough about...I'm looking forward to the book. Take the time to check them out. They were, I believe, the first to report the death of one of my heroes Howard Campbell, which I knew about but still lament. They are accepting adverisers...and with the unfortunate demise of Folk Art Magazine, this could be an opportunity for you gallery owners out there.

check them out HERE

Jim Linderman Profile on The Home of Folk Art

The Art of Collecting, One Man’s Vintage Take On It

The Home of Folk Art

Jim Linderman is a Folk Art collector who considers his collecting an art form. He is also a man with some unique talents. He’s an artist, an author, a self professed Americana iconoclast, and a pop-culture historian. Combine all that with his passion for collecting historical photos, music, and objects and you start to get the picture. By following these passions over the years and seeking his own unique place in art, music, and collecting – Mr. Linderman has reaped some nice rewards. It has even landed him a Grammy nomination along the way.*

One of the great aspects in Folk Art collecting is to seek out the rare, the unusual, the fun, and the obscure. Linderman is a man taking this aspect of collecting one step further – publishing his findings to share with the rest of his fellow collectors. He recently released a book titled In Situ: American Folk Art in Place. It is a book showcasing his collection of beautiful, curious, and unusual vintage Folk Art photos taken in location across America - spotlighting the ‘history’ of Folk Art from earlier years.

Arguably, this photo collection could be thought of as a more non-traditional approach to what is considered Folk Art collecting. However, it makes perfect sense coming from a historian’s point of view such as Mr. Linderman. The images are ones that may not have survived had someone not taken the time to “collect” them and bring them together. He has saved a piece of American Folk Art history and has made it possible for us all to enjoy his collection. We are thankful that he’s sharing.

*Jim Linderman’s first book (which includes an album) titled Take Me to the Water: Immersion Baptism in Vintage Music and Photography 1890-1950 along with record label Dust-to-Digital was given a 2009 Grammy nomination in the Best Historical Album category where Linderman is listed as a compilation engineer.

Mr. Berry Cropped

Chuck Berry Press Photograph (Hand-embellished) Collection Jim Linderman

A Tea Party without Fools RPPC

Tea Party without Fools
Real Photo Postcard 1907 Collection Jim Linderman

Stretched Out

There are a few ways to elongate a photograph. One is to expose the image on paper while holding the plate on an angle...the other is to aim your camera right into a fun house mirror. This is the later.

Anonymous Fun House Mirror Snapshot, circa 1940. Collection Jim Linderman

Deception of the Innocent! Cheap-ass Comic Characters by Charleton

The landmark congressional hearings on the obscenity of children's comic books in the 1950s lead to Fredric Wertham's famous book "Seduction of the Innocent." Well, how about Deception of the Innocent? Examples of knock-off imitations all produced by cheapskates Carelton Comics here give an indication of the lengths companies will go to infringe on successful characters without incurring copyright violations. I give you Timmy the Timid Ghost (Not Caspar) Goofy Rabbit (Not Bugs) and Atom the Cat (Not Sylvester) All from ONE ISSUE! In a brilliant preemptive legal maneuver, they prominently placed the letter "T" on Timmy's pale chest lest there be no mistaking him for any other well-established cute flying ghosts.

Also shown here are notable knock-off Charleton characters including the legendary Masked Ranger (not Lone) and Li'l Genius (who isn't a menace named Dennis) and Freddy...basically "Archie" with one girlfriend instead of two, and neither as hot as Betty or Veronica. Want more? Charlton's "Son of Vulcan" was a fake Thor and "Pudgy Pig" who I can only assume was "related" to Porky. I am sure there were more.

I once tried to trick my nephew into eating yogurt by claiming it was ice cream. He was three years old and couldn't even count, but he COULD shout "That's not ice cream, it's YOGURT" I Iearned my lesson. So did Charleton...they went out of business in 1985.

Cheap Imitations by Charleton, all from "Timmy the Timid Ghost" special issue for R & S Shoe Store 1960 Collection Jim Linderman

Skydancers Betty and Benny Stunt

Betty and Benny Fox in the Death Taking Sky Dance. 18 inch Disc Dancing.
Group of Three snapshots, (with details) circa 1935 collection Jim Linderman

Sleaze Superman Style (!) Shuster's Sadomasochistic Side

Does this look a bit cleaner and more professional than most sleazy girly gags? It should. JOSH is in fact Joe Shuster, co-creator of Superman way back in the late 1930s. The story of how he was screwed out of royalties is familiar to most cartoonists and fans, but what was certainly NOT well-known until last year was his work as a fetishistic, sadomasochistic, bondage and sleaze illustrator in later years.
When I came across this drawing in an issue of "Snappy: Perky Pinups and Lively Man's Gags" (Yes, I have an issue of Snappy) from the 1960s I recognized the lines. Earlier in the year I had read Craig Yoe's astounding book "Secret Identity" linked at right and knew the story, but I was familiar only with the notorious Nights of Horror digests he produced. Sure enough, Yoe points out Shuster did some one-off cartoons and this is an example. YOWSA. If you are interested in vintage sleaze or Superman...the book is fascinating and goes to show what an artist can and will do to pay the bills. 35 years after giving away his rights to the billion dollar man of steel, Warner Communications (then parent company of DC Comics) belatedly granted Joe a near poverty level pension of $20,000 a year. "Josh" passed away, nearly blind, in 1992.

(A simultaneous post on my VINTAGE SLEAZE blog)

Real Body Building and Real College Humor

From the incredible magazine insert "Body Odour: The Magazine for all Viral Body Builders" (For Men who want strength, health, and mental effeminancy) a collaborative effort produced by The Cornell Widow from 1949. A masterpiece of classic college humor, and I haven't laughed so hard since the Harvard Lampoon morphed into the National Lampoon, thus providing my generation with a monthly dose of genius. The Cornell Widow never achieved the legendary status of the Harvard Lampoon, which is I believe the longest running humor magazine in history...but based on the issue from 1949 I am reading tonight, they could have given them a run for the Dean's endowment fund. There was, I am sure, a camaraderie among the fellows who put these things together, and I'm not sure uploading a brief film hosing your dorm mate up to You Tube quite matches it.