Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Kellam Cancer Hospital building, Then and Now.

Here's a little then and now.. This advertisement is circa. 1905 showing the Kellam Cancer Hospital which was located at Twelfth and Bank Streets in Richmond near Capitol Square. The hospital, run by Dr. Fred C. Kellam, was considered a fraud by many in the medical profession at the time.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Carrie Lee Campbell and the Westminister School for Girls, 705 W. Grace St.

Here is a very rare view of 703 and 705 W. Grace St. in Richmond ca. 1905. Selden sent this to me. It's a postcard asking for donations to the Westminster School for Girls. This is opposite where Sally Belle's was on Grace St. Today, VCU's Honors College dormitory sits (that building was originally Metropolitan Hospital).  The building on the left, 703 W. Grace Street, looks like another building that stood on the 500 block of W. Franklin Street. See below. 

 Small advertisement for the school from the
Richmond Times-Dispatch, Sept. 27, 1909.

Carrie Lee Campbell was the principal and founder of the school and it was funded by the Presbyterian Church. According to "History of Education in Richmond" by Margaret Meagher, published in 1939, its courses included kindergarten, primary and college preparatory. Founded in 1900 at 816 Park Avenue it moved to 705 W. Grace in 1903. Meagher writes that school lasted until 1910 but I found newspaper articles and advertisements in the Richmond Times-Dispatch showing the school existed after that date. By 1911, the school was located at 319 W. Grace St. At some point the school did fold but she remained very active in the Presbyterian Church serving in a number of roles at the local, state, and national levels. She authored "Venture of Faith: A History of the Christian Conference for Negro Women of the Synod of Virginia, 1920-1945." She was born Caroline Lee "Carrie" Campbell on Feb. 2, 1867. She died Feb. 28, 1952. Below is her obit. from the RTD, Feb. 29, 1952:

This image was taken by Edith Shelton in the mid-1950s. Her photography is on view at the Valentine Museum.  The address is 504 W. Frankllin St. It was demolished ca. 1970 to make way for Monroe Park Towers, corner of Franklin and Belvidere. 504 W. Franklin looks similar to 703 W. Grace St.

- Ray

Friday, July 7, 2017

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Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Richmond Fruit and Vegetable Can Labels

Powhatan Brand Apple Sauce
Can label 5.5 x 8.5 " dated 1938
H. P. Taylor, Jr., Inc.
The H. P. Taylor company was located at 1 S. 14th St. ca. 1925-1940.

Richmond Fruit and Vegetable Can Labels is the first in a series of articles based on the paper ephemera collection of Tom Ray.

Ephemera is defined as something of no lasting significance or value and meant to be discarded after use. 

Paper ephemera comes in a nearly endless assortment of examples from ticket stubs to menus, local maps, letter and bill heads, and obsolete forms such as ink blotters.
Photographs, calendars and postcards can also be included. For the baby boomer generation our first foray into collecting was often postage stamps - a world wide common example of paper ephemera since Queen Victoria's reign. And, thankfully, not quite fallen victim to email.

Collecting paper ephemera documents local history in primary sources. Vintage postcards illustrate street scenes, buildings, events that might not exist in other formats. Old letter head and envelopes preserve company information and often an illustration of a commercial building. Can and crate labels not only document grocers and food distributors but show in vivid lithographic prints the beginning of modern commercial food production. 

As noted, some of the labels are dated. The earliest here is 1926 although at least one label appears to be earlier. The labels remind us of the ever changing nature of American advertising from the brand names to the brand images including African Americans, native Americans, historic houses, etc. Taken in context, these items remind us of long lost objects from our past. The ephemeral art in the everyday life of our parents and grandparents comes alive. The impact of processed food in our recipes and diets is uniquely documented. 

Technology has changed both packaging formats and food production. Although canned fruits and vegetables are still produced we're much more likely to choose fresh or frozen products. So these colorful labels become examples of true paper ephemera. The examples here were selected because they were from Richmond based companies. They are part of a larger collection of labels from Virginia growers and distributors, particularly for apples and tomatoes.

- Tom.

Bellwood Light Sweet Royal Anne Cherries 
Can label 4.5 x 13"
W. H. Williams & Co.
The W. H. Williams & Co. was located at 20 S. 14th St. ca. 1935-1960.

Deer Head Brand Apple Sauce
Can label 4.5 x 11"
Royal Club Grocers, Inc.
Royal Club Grocers, Inc. was located at 1323-1327 E. Cary St. ca. 1940.

Fairfax Hall Brand Solid Pack Apples
Can label 4.5 x 13"
Wholesale Grocers Exchange, Inc.
Label printer: Stecher-Traung, Rochester, N.Y.

Fancy apples
Crate label 16" diameter
Blalock Fruit & Produce Co., Inc.
Apple image signed: G. P. Read, N. Y.

Home Spun Brand Halves Tree Ripened Peaches
Can label 4.5 x 13"
Phillips-Lewis Co., Inc.
Label printer: Stecher-Traung, Rochester, N.Y.
The Phillips-Lewis company was located at 1329-1331 E. Cary St. ca. 1930-1950.

Old Virginia Potomac River Herring Roe
Can label 3.75 x 9.75"
Fleming-Spencer Co., Inc.
Label printer: Simpson & Doeller Co., Baltimore, Md.

Mayfield Brand Early June Peas
Can label 4.5 x 11"
Gunn-Ellis Co., Inc.
The Gunn-Ellis company was located at 1421 E. Cary St. ca. 1925-1950.

Just Suits brand crushed corn
Can label 4.5 x 11.25" dated 1926
Wholesale Grocers Exchange, Inc.
Label printer: Stecher Lith. Co., Rochester, N.Y.

Mayfield Brand Triple Succotash
Can label 4.5 x 11.25"
Gunn-Ellis Co., Inc.

Mayfield Brand Tomatoes
Can label 5 x 14"
Gunn-Ellis Co., Inc.

Pocahontas Brand Pure Tomato Juice
Can label 4.5 x 11.25"
H. P. Taylor, Jr., Inc.
The H. P. Taylor company was located at 1 S. 14th St. ca. 1925-1940.

Powhatan Brand Apple Rings
Can label 4.5 x 11" dated 1938
H. P. Taylor, Jr., Inc.

Powhatan Brand Apple Sauce
Can label 5.5 x 8.5 " dated 1938
H. P. Taylor, Jr., Inc.

Powhatan Brand Cream Style Sugar Corn
Can label 4.5 x 11" dated 1938
H. P. Taylor, Jr., Inc.

Red Top Brand Tomatoes
Can label 4.5 x 10"
Better Foods, Inc.

Stuart Crest Brand Fancy Apple Sauce
Can label 4.5 x 11"
W. M. Gary Grocery Co., Inc.
The Gary Grocery company was located at 1411 E. Cary St. ca. 1940-1960.

West-Over Brand Apple Sauce
Can label 4.5 x 11" dated 1930
Taylor & Sledd, Inc.
Label printer: Stecher-Traung, Rochester, N. Y.
The Taylor-Sledd company was located at 2201 E. Cary St. 

 Winner Brand Fancy Tomatoes
Can label 4.5 x 13"
Chas. E. Brauer Co., Inc.
Label printed in Baltimore, Md.
The Brauer company was located at 19 S. 14th St. ca. 1920-1960.

--- Tom Ray is a compulsive collector of Southern folk art, NC pottery, Richmond post cards and ephemera. For over 20 years he was a librarian at the Library of Virginia, retiring in 2016 as the Collections Management Coordinator. He co-authored "Greetings from Richmond" with Ray Bonis. Selections from Tom's collections will be highlighted over the coming months.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Revisiting Richmond’s Worst Airplane Disaster: Flight 201/8 - November 8, 1961.

The June 30, 2017 edition of the Richmond Times-Dispatch announced that "A plane crash in Virginia that killed 74 Army recruits in 1961 is among several topics that will be highlighted on new highway markers across the state.  A marker near Richmond International Airport in Henrico County will tell the story of the Imperial Airlines Flight 201/8 crash, which killed 74 Army recruits and three of five crew members on Nov. 8, 1961. An exact spot for the marker has not yet been decided."

Selden told the story of that crash in a November 2013 blog post on this site. Below is a link to the blog post.