New Orleans in Golden Age Postcards

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By Matthew Griffins 

New Orleans in Golden Age Postcards showcases over three hundred vintage postcard images of the city, printed in glorious color. From popular tourist attractions, restaurants, and grand hotels to local businesses, banks, churches, neighborhoods, civic buildings, and parks, the book not only celebrates these cards’ visual beauty but also considers their historic value. After providing an overview of the history of postcards in New Orleans, Matthew Griffis expertly arranges and describes the postcards by subject or theme. Focusing on the period from 1900 to 1920, the book is the first to offer information about the cards’ many publishers.

More than a century ago, people sent postcards like we make phone calls today. Many also collected postcards, even trading them in groups or clubs. Adorned with colorized views of urban and rural landscapes, postcards offered people a chance to own images of places they lived, visited, or merely dreamed of visiting. Today, these relics remain one of the richest visual records of the last century as they offer a glimpse at the ways a city represented itself. They now appear regularly in art exhibits, blogs, and research collections. Many of the cards in this book have not been widely seen in well over a century, and many of the places and traditions they depict have long since vanished.