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An Auction Photograph worth Auctioning off. C.G.Bradley and C.C. ONeil Auction House Collection Jim Linderman


Now here is a fellow who knows how to open a business, or at least celebrate his new job.  It is C. G. Bradley, standing on the side proudly as every street urchin he could round up helps him announce the big auction!  I am surmising Bradley was a recent immigrant, hence the ultra-patriotic flag tableau.  Proud of his job and his place in America. The fourth of July was in a few weeks, so flags were in stock around town.  Chicago.  The photo is dated June 14, 1904.  C.G. identifies himself as "Auctioneer, Salesman and Advertising" on the reverse.  Some of the kids are identified as someone's daughters, and the chumps at the door are probably the mugs who hold up the things for sale and berate you into bidding.

Original Photograph 1904  Collection Jim Linderman

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Wood Man with Saw Sawn From Wood Folk Art

The last time I wrote about chainsaw carvers, I received hate mail from a chainsaw carver!  Now I didn't see those slasher and slicer movies, but I do NOT want to piss off anyone with a chainsaw this time.  So let's just say this is something for the contemporary chainsaw artist to aspire to.

Believe it or not, the chainsaw was invented back in 1785!  Jeepers!  That seems to be a long time to perfect the craft, and I will let others debate whether the craft IS an art this time.  This is a good carving, no matter how it was done.  I think it is art.


Real Photo Postcard, 1936.  Garden City Grange Fair Collection Jim Linderman

Rhythm and Blues come Rock and Roll 1965 photograph collection Jim Linderman

For a century and then some, photographers and camera makers have lauded the ability to "capture movement" whatever that means.  To stop it?  To Freeze the action?  At least this one is perfectly framed. 

I just wish I was there, or that the photographer had captured the music as well.

Anonymous Snapshot, Untitled (1965)  Collection Jim Linderman  

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Basil Wolverton and Monte Wolverton Comedy Magazine Poems and More







I write about cheesecake gag cartoonists on the sister site Vintage Sleaze, but for a time the much admired (and, now, finally, much respected) Basil Wolverton had his work printed in the line of Humorama (Timely Features, the forerunner of Marvel comics) pinup gag digests I study.  Far from cheesecake or pinup girls, as you can see, Wolverton's work must have been included in the Humorama magazines not because it was titillating, but because it was pretty damn good. 

Wolverton made up as many words as the characters he drew.  One panel here contains fourteen sound effects, and there have been entire articles based on the words he created. 

Monte Wolverton, the artist's son, fell so close to the tree he climbed up it!  A successful editorial cartoonist, sculptor and fine artist Monte is just as interesting as Dad.  His work appears in no less than 850 publications weekly and he regularly shows work in galleries around the country.  The Monte Wolverton website is delightful.  In addition to an up-to-date display of his work, the site is a tribute to the work of his father.  See some of his colorful work below (and on his site)
Monte Wolverton Installation View Peculiarium Gallery Portland
Monte's site lists available publications on his father's work along with a good sample of Basil's work, including the extraordinary apocalyptic drawings Basil did for Plain Truth magazine.  One is shown here...quiver! 
Basil Wolverton Image from The Apocalypse
The index provided on Wolverton's site omits the works from Comedy in the bibliography, so I do not know if they have been included in any of the anthologies.  ALL were taken from ONE issue of Comedy Magazine, the January 1953 issue, and there was much more.  In addition to these poems, there were several short pieces of multi-panel work in the same single issue. They represent just a miniscule amount of the work he produced.  The Monte Wolverton and Basil Wolverton Website is here.  Spend some time.

MONTE WOLVERTON WEBSITE is HERE








Magician The Great Virgil Wounds a Volunteer From the Audience Original Photograph Collection Jim Linderman


The Great Virgil was Virgil Harris Mulkey, born 1900 - Final disappearing act 1989.

Quite a magician and quite a show, one which could afford to have three buffoons stand around in clown heads.  Virgil's greatest trick, however, was marrying the lovely Julie Capriotti.  In 1929, the magician asked for a volunteer from the audience and young Julie stepped up.  The Great Virgil injured her on stage!  While visiting her in the hospital, they fell in love and married two years later.
 
They look happy here, don't they?  They were.  They were married 58 years...and THAT is no trick.

The Great Virgil Publicity Photograph, circa 1940  Collection Jim Linderman




Baby Adelina Cabinet Card by Frank Wendt Collection Jim Linderman

Baby Adelina Cabinet Card Photograph Collection Jim Linderman
Frank Wendt Carnival / Circus / Sideshow photograph of Baby Adelina, circa 1890  Cabinet Card Collection Jim Linderman


SEE CURRENT AUCTIONS HERE

Stunt with Chair RPPC Collection Jim Linderman

Real Photo Postcard circa 1920 Collection Jim Linderman
New book on the way soon (!)  It's looking good, should be done in a few weeks.  Until then, current available titles are HERE.

A Large Oak Split Basket with Shaped Handles and Beautiful Form Folk Art



A Large handmade basket, thick Oak strips with shaped handles.  30" long at top, 20" long at base, with a taper.  Circa 1920?  Collection Jim Linderman


THREE Big Pauls Paul Bunyan, a Beatle and a Friend with a Gun Me and Paul

One of the three most famous and deserving "Pauls" in the world, the other two being Sir Paul of Beatle and just plain Paul who played drums and carried the gun for Willie Nelson for 50 years. (The club owners who hired Willie were often slow to produce the night's receipts...Paul was there to make sure they did.)  If you are interested in Paul, the song "Me and Paul" tells the story.  You already know Sir Paul's story, and if you don't know Paul Bunyan's tale, you can read it HERE from several years ago, and see a bunch of his big effigies.

The Paul here was built by Cyril M. Dickinson and Jim Payton, in 1936, in Bemidji MN.

Paul Bunyan Real Photo Postcard circa 1936 Collection Jim Linderman

Bud Stewart and his Crippled Critters Blood Red Wounded Fishing Lures


This is the true story of an unlikely gruesome genius, flesh hanging off hooks and people dredging a lake.

Bud Stewart has been called Michigan's Legendary Lure Maker (the title of a book as well) and Michigan is proud to claim him as their own. 

Michigan is a state surrounded by water, with even more dotting the interior, and for many fishing is art, skill, hobby and life.  As such, the state tends to bring out the best in carved fishing decoys and lures. 

Oscar Peterson was one carver, and his lovely ice fishing decoys from the 1920s and 1930s regularly sell for thousands of dollars. 

The other was Bud.

Bud's great invention, rather Bud's great concept, was the creation of the wounded lure.  That's right.  Wounded!  What attracts a predator to prey?  The weakest in the pack. The wounded. 

Bud's genius was to create the crippled lure.  His fishing lures were painted in places fish blood red, and often even WEIGHTED to appear wounded.  Bloody messes which would float on an angle, a seemingly easy gulp for a bigger fish.  Some, as this one, even had little plastic trails of blood. 

Bud Stewart's lures were literally killing machines.  Painted with deception in mind.  Trained to hunt.  They came out of the box ready to snare and snag any mouth (or finger) close enough to graze them.  It is said Bud's lures were the last factory made lures which were hand-painted.

Could fish see color? Apparently, although they haven't tested every species.  Do they sense the infirm among their brothers?  Who cares.  Fishing is a combination of superstition and luck.  If a crippled lure catches a fish, it will be used again. 

The lure above is more relic than art.  It was an earner...it provided many a fish dinner for a Michigan family.  Well-used and used well.  Amazingly, it has even been repaired!  Imagine repairing such a tiny, utilitarian object when so many efficient and modern replacements were so readily available.

Later in life, having been recognized by his peers and the collecting community, Stewart continued to make a few lures a year, but then for folk art aficionados as much as for fisherman.  They stayed on tiny pedestals rather than lines, and caught only the attention of other carvers.

Years ago, on a visit to Michigan, and having read about Bud, I went to the area he was best known and asked around to see if any were for sale.  Folks said nope.  I said maybe someone should dredge the lakes to see if any old ones were caught in the weeds.  Folks said they already had.



Bud Stewart Fishing Lure (Injured Minnow) Collection Jim Linderman

WAY out on a ledge Umbrella Rock RPPC collection Jim Linderman


Real Photo Postcard images of Umbrella Rock at Lookout Mountain are not uncommon, but few bring an intake of breath like this one.  What were these guys thinking?

Real Photo Postcard undated (circa 1900?) Collection Jim Linderman


The Last Levon Helm Tribute Pecks Drum and Lavon the Gentleman Percussionist

On my first of several visits to the magnificent Levon Helm rambles, which was the process by which one of the greatest singers in American history relearned to sing, I stopped Levon as he was headed to tinker with the drum kit.  Great mechanics take care of their machines, and Levon was one of the great mechanics of percussion.  I had a few brief things which were so important to me to say, and who knew at the time I would have several other chances to say it.

The lovely Barbara O'Brien, at the time Levon's manager and organizer of the Midnight Ramble at Levon's house, had somehow invited me.  I truly don't remember how or why, but I rented a car the same day and booked a room in Kingston, New York, a ten minute drive from Levon's place.  She told me to bring food to share, and sure enough it was potluck. 

Levon was in a pair of nylon pants, soft-sole black tennis shoes and a determined look.  If those drums needed tightening, even though the audience was to be some 50 people, they were going to be perfect. 

I asked Mr. Helm to pause.  "Mr. Helm, I would like to thank you for two things."  He grinned and looked me in the eye.  I continued.  "First, for inviting us into your house.  Second, for all that you have done for me over the years without knowing it." 

He reached out his hand, the right hand, a drummer's hand, and said "Thank you brother."

That night I don't remember who was playing, but in the barn we heard Levon's music the way it should be heard.  On a stage with no nails in the wood (!) Levon had insisted the place would be held together with wooden pegs rather than metal.  I was ten feet from the kit, and no one was more than five times that as they played all night. 

I was lucky enough to see a few more shows.  One particularly special evening turned out to be one of the last performances of Pinetop Perkins.  That's right.  Pinetop played all night, with the entire line-up of Muddy Water's band, the one which had backed Muddy on his album recorded at Levon's place years earlier and came to be known as Muddy's Woodstock album.  The whole band reunited just to play at Levon's.  At the time, Pinetop was maybe 95 years old.  He wore a purple suit and, I am not kidding, flirted with women and HE wasn't kidding.  He would have taken any women in the place.  The band came from afar and they were all there.

Remembrances, and there could be many more, are clogging the web.  It doesn't surprise me, as Levon (actually named Lavon as a child) was one of the true gentleman in a business full of creeps.  There was a bit of Paul McCartney in him...as in "if Levon asks, you do it" just like you would for a Beatle. He was that highly regarded as a man and a musician.

On the day I learned he was passing, I posted a recording he made with his band mates in 1961.  Further on Down the Road, a blues chestnut they put on a 45rpm when they were "Levon and the Hawks" and marveled all over again as I realized he had been playing over 50 years professionally.  The entire history of Rock and Roll.

What tribute can I leave online for Levon?  The following, courtesy of Elvis Costello and HIS tribute, from which I quote: 

"Peck Curtis" received a press roll and a cymbal smash that sounded like a round of applause but then Levon had purchased and preserved Mr. Curtis' hand painted kit from his days playing with Sonny Boy Williamson on the "King Biscuit Time" radio show on KFFA and put it on display in the Delta Cultural Center in Helena, Arkansas."

I had always hoped to find that drum myself. 

Levon grew up listening to that drum on the radio.  He was born and raised ten miles from the studio.  It was a daily 15 minute program with Sonny Boy Williamson, and it obviously thrilled young Lavon.  That he was able to procure the drum is a mystery as beautiful as Kane's sled in my mind. 

Those of you who would like to know a but more about Levon and life itself should read his autobiography.  It is written as he speaks and you will learn phrases you will remember.  Including "like a horse pissing on a rock" which is not something you might expect from a gentleman like Levon, but makes perfect sense coming from a percussionist.
Jim Linderman 4/21/12

Paperboys from the Past Snapshot of Toledo Blade Boys Collection Jim Linderman

Click to Read Headline

Adult actions can have dire consequences on the kids...and though you would not suspect that truism has anything to do with this photo, click to enlarge, squint, and make out the headline.

What appears to be a circa 1935 snapshot of paperboys ( a now extinct profession) is fine enough, but they all seem to be smiling as if the war ended or their team won!  What's the headline? 

PEACE REACHED IN TRUCK STRIKE!  It looks like these hard workers are back to work, and Dad gets his morning paper.

Toledo Blade Paperboys, original snapshot collection Jim Linderman
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Wendell P. Loveless Three Children in a Furnace with Sound Effects RECORD STORE DAY!

THREE CHILDREN IN A FURNACE on HAPPY TIME RECORDS




Remember!  Record Store Day is APRIL 21, that is THIS SATURDAY.  ALL YOUR REAL FRIENDS WILL BE THERE!     

This one probably won't.... Evangelist Wendell. P. Loveless Three Children in a Furnace on Happy Time Records.  Collection Jim Linderman


Essential Exhibitions at the International Center of Photography 2012

"Jeff Davis and His Last Ditch" International Center of Photography

Jefferson Davis hikes his skirt in the upcoming exhibition "President in Petticoats!  Civil War Propaganda in Photographs" at the International Center of Photography in NYC.   Looks like a good show to me.  The Exhibit opens May 18, 2012 and runs until September 2, 2012.

Note also the Weegee show "Murder is my Business" runs until September 2. Other shows include Christer Stromholm and "A Short History of Photography" from the ICP collection honoring Willis E. Hartshorn.

More information is available at the ICP website




What's Better Than A Box Of Paints ? These Are! Blaisdell Pencil Box




What's better than a box of paints?  My box of Blaisdell Map Coloring Drawing Pencils!  They are encased in wood.

Blaisdell Colored Pencils No Date Collection Jim Linderman


Folk Art Sculpture Man with a Bowler c. 1900 Collection Jim Linderman




Man with a Bowler Hat Folk Art Sculpture, 15 inches tall, 27 inches around.  Circa 1900  Collection Jim Linderman

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TOP VALUE ! Looking for Top Value?


Looking for top value?  Shoot, who ain't?  Trading Stamps can stretch your dollar, and just look at the perfect, clean world they come from!  Look really, really close and you can see the Top Value mascot, "Toppie" the frugal elephant painted on the wall of the redemption center, all dressed up in his tartan frock to represent value.  Top Value was located in Canton, Ohio

Top Value Trading Stamps Booklet Top Value Enterprises 1966  Collection Jim Linderman

Etui Etui ??? Homemade Folk Art Needle Case

Etui   ???   Edui is another name for a needle case.  Well, sorta.  So let's just use needle case.  A handmade one, with felt, feedsack printed cotton, some trim...and a nice little tab of paper above from where this little lady once lived in a scrapbook but was torn out.  She has had a few lives.

An odd thing, as printed needle cases and needle books were literally given out free.  
SEE HERE  
Still, someone took the time to make it, the least I can do is scan it.

 

Depression Era handmade Needle Case  Collection Jim Linderman