Thursday, January 7, 2016

Four cool vintage workplace photos

I have no idea when or where these black-and-white photographs are from. The only thing on the back of them is "FOLDER NO. 1092."

They're really cool, though, especially when you magnify them to check out all of the details in the nooks and crannies of these workplace settings. (Click on them to magnify.)

The large sheet of paper in the center of the above photograph states:

NOV. 1-21"

Here's one of the cool details from that last photo...

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Liebig's strange trees (merkwürdige bäume) of the world, Part 2

Following up on Sunday's post, here are two more images featuring Strange Trees from Liebig's German-language vintage advertising trade cards.

Die grosse Lindevon
Schloss Augustusburg (Sachsen)

This mighty tree, the Great Lime of Augustusburg, is located at Augustusburg Castle (also known as Augustusburg Hunting Lodge) in Saxony, Germany.

It is one of numerous ancient lime trees in Germany. According to the German-language Wikisource, it was planted in the early 1400s and predates the castle. The tree and its heavy horizontal branches were first supported with a wooden grid around 1549. The support structure was modified and replaced many times over the centuries and also included a copper dome at one point. In 1891, a tornado damaged part of the support structure, including brick pillars around the base, and the great lime also lost several primary branches. (This illustration might have been made before that storm damage.)

Cypresse bei Oajaca

This storied tree has its own Wikipedia page. It is El Árbol del Tule, and it is generally thought to be 1,400 to 1,600 years old. It is located in the small town of Santa María del Tule, about six miles east of Oaxaca. It has a "smoothed-out" diameter of 30.8 feet, making it the stoutest known tree in the world, wider than the mightiest giant sequoia.

Sadly, El Árbol del Tule is said to be slowly dying, on account of water shortages, pollution and nearby traffic.

Here is a 2005 photograph of the tree, via Wikipedia...

"12-05oaxaca093" by Bobak Ha'Eri at en.wikipedia. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.5 via Commons -

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Liebig's strange trees (merkwürdige bäume) of the world, Part 1

Back in November, I posted for the first time about Liebig's colorful and abundant trade card sets, which were produced for more than a century, from the 1870s through 1970s. More than 11,000 unique cards were published and most were issued in multiple languages. They came in themed sets (or series) of 6 or 12 cards. One great place to start for more information about the cards is the Cartolino website.

One set, which I believe included six cards, was titled Strange Trees1 (Merkwürdige Bäume in German). I have four of those cards and will be featuring two today and two later this week (hopefully tomorrow).

First up is this card featuring Mammutbaum, also known as Sequoiadendron giganteum, and best known to us as the towering giant sequoias of California.

The second card is a beautiful mystery. It appears to be a religious structure built within a huge, dead tree.

The text on the card is:

Baum mit kleinen
in T-tsin-pu (China)

Baum mit kleinen Tempeln translates to "tree with small temples."

But I can't find much more about where this amazing edifice is or if it still exists. The only other lead I have at the moment is that the image of the "treehouse" also appears in Globus: illustrierte Zeitschrift für Länder- und Völkerkunde (illustrated magazine for country and Ethnology), a German-language publication from the 1880s.

1. Other Liebig sets of strange things included Strange Insects, Strange Feminine Hairstyles, Strange Dwellings and Strange Mammals.