Linen Postcards Origins in Europe not USA?

As a huge fan of the vibrant colours and unusual locations of the “linen” textured postcards produced in the 1930-50s by companies such as Curt Teich and Asheville I have built up a fairly large stock. Some years back I did write a blog (see U.S.A. -Linen Postcards dated 2012, one of my earliest blogs) and included a few of my earliest aquisitions. I particularly like the obscure highway motels and the brash large letter city name cards.

Linen cards refers not to the paper content but the surface texture of the cards resembling a uniform vertical and horizontal lined texture. My assumption from reading mainly US research and information on line was that this type of card originated in the US but I think I have disproved this while sorting through my Reynard Collectables large stock of French postcards of the 1900s to 1920s.

I came across a few cards in colour (admittedly without the vibrant colours of the later US cards!) and with a definite linen texture, consisting of uniform dots and lines. The Rouen card is unused but definitely early 1900s and has “Editeur: Barrau-Crampon, 61, rue Jeanne d’arc, Rouen” along bottom edge. The St.Malo card is postally used from Sevres in 1920 and along the bottom left edge is printed “Bazar Parisien, Paraine” (not certain about the last word as it is mixed with the image).

I have added a couple of photo images of these cards which although not fantastic quality hopefully show some of the surface texture. The cards also have a toned coloration which may just be something that has happened over time due to exposure to light. I have preceded these with one of my US linen cards to show the contrast in the vibrancy of the colour in the later cards compared with the fairly gloomy earlier French “linen” cards.

Not a discovery that will change the world, and it may not even be a first but it is new to me!

At various times items from Reynard Collectables fascinating (to me!) stock of paper collectables are available in by ebay and delcampe stores. Just click on the appropriate store and it will take you there.

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About reynardcollectables

Married to Barbara, two boys, work from home office. Trying to build my collectables hobby into a profitable business.
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