Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Christmas postcard #9:
Yellow cloaks

Are (or were) yellow cloaks a Christmas holiday tradition anywhere in the world? My Christmas experience has been so inundated with red and green that it's hard to accept any other colors into the fold. According to YourHolidayLights.com, golden decorations were thought to bring warmth during the cold winter months, and "poor people who couldn’t afford gold colored decorations substituted yellow." Also, of course, gold was one of the gifts from the Three Wise Men. So yellow/gold certainly has meaning, but I'm not sure if there's a significance to this particular piece of apparel. And how about those hand warmers?

The publisher is a mystery, too. Here's the elaborate image on the back of the postcard...

I cannot determine with any certainty what publisher used that logo. There's a reference to it being "M. Stein" but no second confirmation that I could find. Because the back is for the address only, this card might have been produced prior to March 1907, which is when messages were first allowed on the back of cards in the United States.

The addressee was Miss Bessie Potter of Sandy Lake, Pennsylvania. It's a tiny borough in northwestern Pennsylvania that's never had a population over 1,000. It's considered part of the Youngstown, Ohio, metroplex just as much as it's considered part of Pennsylvania. Major League Baseball player Terry "Cotton Top" Turner was from Sandy Lake.

And what about Bessie Potter? I found a few passing newspaper mentions. In 1904, she was on the music committee (along with Hazel Down and Byrl Runkle) for the Sandy Lake High School Alumni Association banquet. In 1925 should took part in social meeting for a local literary club. And In 1937, still as Miss Bessie Potter, she was co-hostess of a Gay Nineties Club luncheon at the home of Mrs. Margaret Turner.

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