Delving into Henry K. Wampole & Company: Sharon Reynolds of Morehead, Kentucky, writes: "I was working on cleaning a house that was destroyed by the March 2nd, 2012, tornadoes here in east Kentucky and found an old label off of a box of Wampole's but couldn't figure out what it was. Thanks, this was informative and interesting."
And Anonymous writes: "Any idea what a Henry K. Wampole 1 gallon crock would be worth? I found one while cleaning out our cellar. It is in prime condition."
Anonymous, I'm not really an expert on antique glass or ceramics. I do see old Wampole bottles listed fairly regularly on eBay, and they don't seem to fetch much when they sell -- maybe $10 to $20. If you have a larger piece in excellent condition, you might want to check with a local appraiser to get a better sense of its worth. And then, of course, you have to find a buyer. I'm in that spot right now, as I have stumbled upon one volume from the four-volume translation of the Old Testament published by Charles Thomson in 1808. Theoretically, it could have a good bit of value. But finding the right buyer can be hard work.
My daughter's special guest post about geography: Dianne writes: "Great post, Sarah. Good journalism seems to run in your family."
1961's World Flag Game About the United Nations: Anonymous writes: "The wiki says that the Ukrainian SSR become one of founding members of the United Nations (UN) together with the Soviet Union and the Byelorussian SSR. This was part of a deal with the United States to ensure a degree of balance in the General Assembly, which, the USSR opined, was unbalanced in favor of the Western Bloc. The fourth Soviet founding member,the Transcaucasian SSR, didn't make it into the UN because it was dissolved in 1936 and divided among the Georgian, Armenian and Azerbaijan SSRs."
The wonderful world of comic book advertisements: Mel Kolstad of Ephemeraology writes: "I LOVE comic book ads - they're a breed all their own. I used to pore over these when I was a kid! Thanks for rekindling those memories."
Mystery photos inside "Helen of the Old House": Someone from the website Ephemerania writes: "In the two closeups at the bottom: look at the chin and lower mouth region ... it's very distinctive, so I would say those two are the same person for sure."
Mystery photo of well-dressed boys: Anonymous writes: "Does not look like it is a normal outfit, it would probably be a Sundays outfit (church). (I'm not from Amsterdam but nearby, so I only know my regional clothing.) I would date the picture 1880-1910."
Quaker Oats takes you "Around the World with Hob": Lots of comments on this one!
- Wendyvee of Wendyvee's RoadsideWonders.net writes: "Poor Hob would have to 'register' to live in the mill these days and would probably be on the TSA watchlist. If I were having a baby, I would SO steal the name Electra Papadopoulos."
- Anonymous writes: "Electra Papadopoulos? You've obviously never heard of the author Crescent Dragonwagon."
- Another Anonymous (or perhaps the same Anonymous) writes: "Did Bob Robin perhaps get his name from the song, or was it vice-versa? 'When the red-red robin comes bob-bob-bobbin along, along. There'll be no more sobbin' when he starts throbbin' his own, sweet song...'"
- And my wonderful wife writes: "I would just like to point out that no other wife in the WORLD gave their husband this as a Christmas gift. I'm incomparable."
Postcards: Lakes in Wisconsin and Vermont, and a river in England: Mom writes: "Idlepine was where my grandparents and mother always stayed when they came up to visit my brother and I when were were at camp. The building you see in the photo is the main lodge, which was the dining room (Duncan Hines was right, the food was excellent), kitchen, library and game room. The rest of the property had cabins -- some singles, some twins -- which were very basic. Beds and a bathroom with a sink, commode, and a big old clawfoot tub. Each room had a small woodstove, which you really needed to light a fire in in the mornings because it could be COLD! All the cabins were nestled in the pine woods and had screened porches. It was quiet and lovely. There were many camps on Lake Fairlee, some of which are still there today. My brother and I spent years as campers and then counselors at Camp Norway (boys' camp, now gone) and Lochearn Camp (girls' - still thriving today)."
Mystery photos inside Cullum's "The Night-Riders": Alamedared writes:
Per ancestry.com-is this your Gerland...
10 Apr 1891
14 Mar 1986
Enlistment Date 1:
9 Jun 1917
Release Date 1:
13 May 1919
Enlistment Date 2:
6 Jan 1921
Release Date 2:
13 Dec 1923
A trio of cemetery photos: Jo Ott, who previously contributed her memories of West Pittston, Pennsylvania, writes: "Chris, please visit the tiny cemetery on Alpine Road, about a mile or two off Route 177 [in York County]. It's on the right side of Alpine going towards Dover, set back a few feet from the road and is easy to miss. It is treed, has a stone wall a few feet high and a little wooden gate. I've stopped a few times but it looks snaky so I won't go in. If you dare, see if any names can be seen on the stones."
Thanks, Jo! As soon as this weird weather (80 degrees one week, 30 degrees the next week) stops, Joan and I fully intend to check this place out.
Two mysteries: Who were these people? What did they did do? Bob Gill writes: "Those are 'Breaker Boys'. Most of the major coal mines of the time hired boys to work in the breaker, where they sorted coal into different grades."
Thanks, Bob! After some examination of the old postcard, our initial guess was that these were, indeed, child laborers. But we didn't know what they were called or what, exactly, they were doing. Here are some excerpts from Wikipedia's entry on breaker boys, along with a public-domain photograph taken in 1911 in Pittston, Pennsylvania:
"A breaker boy was a coal-mining worker in the United States and United Kingdom whose job was to separate impurities from coal by hand in a coal breaker. ... The use of breaker boys began in the mid-1860s. ... The work performed by breaker boys was hazardous. Breaker boys were forced to work without gloves so that they could better handle the slick coal. The slate, however, was sharp, and breaker boys would often leave work with their fingers cut and bleeding. Breaker boys sometimes also had their fingers amputated by the rapidly moving conveyor belts. Others lost feet, hands, arms, and legs as they moved among the machinery and became caught under conveyor belts or in gears. Many were crushed to death, their bodies retrieved from the gears of the machinery by supervisors only at the end of the working day. Others were caught in the rush of coal, and crushed to death or smothered. ... Public condemnation of the use of breaker boys was so widespread that in 1885 Pennsylvania enacted a law forbidding the employment of anyone under the age of 12 from working in a coal breaker, but the law was poorly enforced; many employers forged proof-of-age documentation, and many families forged birth certificates or other documents so their children could support the family."
Advertisements from a 1977 Slovenian almanac: Mel Kolstad writes: "This is an AMAZING find! I LOVE THIS. My first husby was half-Slovenian; you don't usually find a lot of Slovenian ephemera!"
Meanwhile, I would also like to point out that the "Republika Slovenija - The Republic of Slovenia" liked this post on Facebook...
Saturday's postcard: America House Motor Inn: Anonymous wrote: "My family stayed at this property several times in the late 1970s. It was one of our favorite vacation spots - a very special place. It was located not in Virginia Beach but south of Cape Charles on the Eastern Shore, at the north end of the Bridge and Tunnel. The property still stands and is now called the Sunset Beach Resort."
(Note: Reader Melanie Pancho first updated us on what happened to America House Motor Inn in the January 31 edition of Reader Comments.)
Great links: Shorpy Higginbotham: Jo Ott writes: "I used to shop in that Super Giant as they were called back then. We lived in Rockville for about a year around 1967-1968. Those Super Giants were all over the DC metro area and had clothing and gift sections that sold, among other items, a zillion pairs of jeans just when they were becoming all the rage to be worn by others besides rednecks, farmers & hillbillies! Giant eventually got out of the clothing business but the stores remained Super Giants for many more years. When area liquor laws changed, those retail spaces were taken over by beer and wine products. There were two Super Giants in Rockville and I would shop in one or the other. The larger one was demolished and replaced by a much larger store. Not sure about the smaller one. Did you notice the blue frocks the checkers are wearing, those very large cash registers and the brown paper bags? No 'paper or plastic' or scanners in those days!"