Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Enveloping Ephemera

Sometimes, it's just the simple things that I enjoy most.  Take, for example, these old envelopes -

I just got a lot of them from Manto Fev!  Now of course, most people reading this would wonder why on earth I would spend money on USED, old envelopes (and this is the second post I've done on used envelopes, even!).  Well, they just don't get it.  :)

If they DID understand, then they'd know why these are so cool!  For example, they'd understand that each of these envelopes has a story.  You'll notice that all of these are addressed to residents of Omaha - that's because Manto Fev's based out of Omaha.

Or how about the awesome return addresses?  Can you imagine having a bank (no more savings & loans!) called CONSERVATIVE in this day and age?  You'd have 50% of the population who'd refuse to bank there.  ;)  But oh, look at that beautiful interior!  It's one of the most wonderful things about vintage business envelopes - the cool designs!

Or take this envelope. Here's something you'll never see again, but was absolutely common 55 years ago - addressing the recipient's residence as "City".  No zip code, no city, no state - if the mail sorters were in charge of local mail, why would you need any of those things?  And I'll bet that it was received the next day, or in 2 days at the latest.  No return address, either!  There is also a lack of a postmark (because it was in the city?) but in my short research on the Martha Washington 1 1/2 cent stamp, I'm going to place this around the late Thirties.

I'll be honest - some of these envelopes are going to be cut up to use as backgrounds for collages I'll be doing (that vintage yellowed paper can't be beat), and some will be turned into handmade paper.  If this bothers you, take heart - at least I saved them from a thousand years in a landfill!  :D


  1. I get it Mel! Old envelopes can be art in themselves. I particularly like messages that come with stamp "cancellation". I got one recently that said "Aliens must report their addresses during January". Oh my since I am a resident alien... Lol

  2. Cutting them up for collage is a terrific idea! And yes - I get it too. You can't beat old yellowed paper.

  3. Your collection grows and grows.

  4. Your blog was mentioned in Ephemera World and I saw all these envelopes. I agree with you, there is so much to be learned from them. I have many from my family and a.o. I learned where my father was during the WW2 mobilization. He was the sender on some of these. In any case, I liked reading your post as it "exposes" yet another angle of what you can learn from envelopes.
    In The Netherlands we have these stamp cancellations with messages as well. I did a post on this subject and there are more to come. If you are interested please see http://patmcast.blogspot.nl/2012/10/postmarks.html
    I liked your example about aliens!