Monday, 16 May 2011

Cool Lemonade

"Children on the Farm"
Selling lemonade, Mt Pleasant, Iowa, 1930s

A photograph by Pete Wettach (1901-1976) who started off working with the Farm Security Administration and was later a free lance photographer, taking thousands of photographs of the people of the mid west. He has preserved a whole way of life and some tough times when he took photos in the Great Depression. 

This photograph captures so much, the boy in the hat is obviously in charge, the other boy is collecting the money and the girl is concentrating hard on pouring the lemonade. An assembly line of endeavour.   My sender, Postal Muse, says she too as a kid dragged a wagon through her neighbourhood selling lemonade. I always imagine this as a particularly American part of childhood in the hot days of summer.  I remember our hosts in Greece being slightly amused by the English excitement of seeing lemons growing on trees  in their garden.  Not as hilarious as they found it when we took a day trip to Turkey and one of our number brought back Turkish Delight, for it is available everywhere in Greece, as Lokumi.

The card came with a great set of stamps

A couple of forever stamps, the 'celebrate' with neon sign and fireworks and then the large Jazz stamp. I love the Jazz stamp, designed by the artist Paul Rogers the only instruction he had was that it should show no recognisable performers and the word jazz.  It certainly has the feel of the music. Because of this stamp I discovered his wonderful ABZ collection of Jazz portraits here and his article about designing the stamp here

The first unveiling of the stamps was of course in New Orleans but the second was in the Kansas City Jazz Museum where the US Postal Service installed the old Wesport post office from the 1880s, normally kept in storage. You could buy the stamps through the original wooden teller window. Now that is what I call launching a stamp.

Thank you Post Muse, lemonade, history and black and white photography, a perfect combination.

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