Friday, September 29, 2017

Maude On The Cover

I discovered that the American post-punk band Protomartyr uses an image of Maude Fealy for the album art of their new album 'Relatives In Descent'. And it appears to be based on one of my own postcards! Here is the original picture:

Check the imprint of the postmark on the album cover and on this postcard in the upper right corner, their artwork designer (Joe Casey) indeed used my card! (the postmark is dated May 27 1906 5:30PM)

And here are some more pictures of Maude posing as a nun:

(all postcards from my own collection)

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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

π Day!

Today's date is 3-14: so it is Pi Day!

So today you have a good excuse to eat pi :-)

nice pun of Harry Nilsson's song One (is the loneliest number)

A Brief History of π

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Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year !

Clara Bow and Larry Gray, 1925 (General Photographic Agency)

A happy new 1925 2017 to all my readers!

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Thursday, November 24, 2016

Angela Greene & Turkey

Angela Greene (1921-1978)

Angela Greene (Dublin, 1921 – Los Angeles, 1978) was an Irish actress. At the age of six she was adopted by her uncle Eddie Greene and moved to Flushing, Queens. Starting out as a model, she became a popular WWII pin-up girl and her image graced the nose of the US bomber Skipper 2, which flew 25 missions over North Africa and Europe.

Despite her looks and talent, Greene was too independent-minded for a starring career in Hollywood. She once turned down a Paramount contract because she objected to being called a "starlet", claiming "Girls given that label get stuck with bit parts, pin ups, and wolves".

Nevertheless she played in many movies like Hollywood Canteen (1944), Mildred Pierce (1945), The Day of the Locust (1975) and Futureworld (1976). She co-starred with Johnny Weissmuller in Jungle Jim in the Forbidden Land (1951) and she was one of Elvis Presley's amours in Tickle Me (1965). She also appeared in dozens of TV shows like The Cisco Kid, The Donna Reed Show, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, Batman, The Waltons, and Baretta.

Angela Greene - Hollywood Canteen press photo
Angela Greene (Hollywood Canteen press photo)

During the early 1940s she was one of John F. Kennedy’s girlfriends when he was a naval lieutenant. She married businessman Stuart Martin and had three children. Greene later took up painting seriously and had several exhibitions of her work. She died of a stroke, just two weeks before turning 57.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Gene Tierney - The Painting Of Laura * Update *

 portrait of Laura
Thanks to John Escobar who provided this recent photo of the portrait of Laura!  

The painting of Laura (Gene Tierney)

Gene Tierney's best known role is the enigmatic murder victim in Laura (1944). As the detective assigned to investigate her death, Dana Andrews falls in love with the bewitching portrait of Laura over the fireplace in the apartment. Then, several days after her supposed death, he falls asleep on the sofa only to awaken and find that Laura was not just a dream, captured on canvas, but …

At first a painting was made by the wife of the initial director Mamoulian. After a month of filming he was fired, and Otto Preminger took over. He found the painting unflattering, he said it lacked the mysterious feel that the painting needed to capture the audience. It was flat and boring. Since it plays a large role in the movie, he wanted it to be perfect, it had to have allure and power. 

To replace it, Preminger sent Gene to studio photographer Frank Polony. Several portrait shots were taken, and the best shot was enlarged to the size of a painting. After it was framed it was lightly airbrushed with paint, giving it the appearance of brush strokes.

This painting of Gene Tierney as Laura was later also used in On the Riviera (1951) in color co-starring Danny Kaye, and in Woman's World (1954) starring Clifton Webb. In Woman's World the painting hung on a wall with portraits of several other women who were supposed to have been former romantic interests of Webb's character.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

The Bones of the Romanovs

The bones of the Romanovs, murdered by the Bolsheviks in 1918, on display in Yekaterinburg before their reburial in St. Petersburg.

Exactly eighty years after Russian Tsar Nicholas II and his family were executed by Bolshevik troops on July 17, 1918, their remains were buried in an official state funeral in St. Petersburg, the old imperial capital. The remains of the Romanovs had been discovered in Yekaterinburg almost twenty years earlier, under railroad ties on a country road where they had been hidden by their assassins. Their whereabouts were kept secret until 1991 when tests were ordered to authenticate the bones. Six years of examination and DNA- testing established the remains as those of the last imperial family. Thousands of Russians paid tribute to the Romanovs in Yekaterinburg where their bones were put on display.

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Saturday, July 16, 2016

Barbara Stanwyck Day!

Happy birthday to Barbara Stanwyck (July 16, 1907 – January 20, 1990) 

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Sunday, June 12, 2016

Happy Birthday Amersfoort

Today is Amersfoort's 757 birthday as a city!

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Monday, May 16, 2016

The King-Crane Commission

Interactive map: How the King-Crane Commission envisioned the Middle East
(Karl Sturm and Nick Danforth) (

In 1919, President Woodrow Wilson, a believer in national self-determination, dispatched theologian Henry King and businessman Charles Crane to explore possible political arrangements for the former Ottoman Empire in the aftermath of World War I. Their assignment was to find out how the region’s residents wanted to be governed. Their report shows the dilemmas involved in the drawing of borders. And it was all for nothing, secretly the French and the British had divided the region among themselves in the Sykes-Picot agreement of May 16, 1916 (today exactly 100 years ago).

The King-Crane Commission at the Hotel Royal, Beirut, July 1919.
Seated at table commissioners King (left) and Crane (right) (Oberlin College Archives)

next episode: Aleppo

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Liberation Day

(source: national archive)

On Monday May 7th, 1945 the Canadian Allied forces entered Amersfoort. In the background the Kamperbinnenpoort. Nationwide Liberation Day is celebrated on May 5th (and on May 4th the victims of World War II are commemorated).

next episode: Aleppo

Saturday, April 2, 2016


daguerreotype 6th plate (from my own collection, ca. 1850)

next episode: Rügen


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