Identify the Postcard by Ortigas Library Winners

Ortigas Library Foundation conducted an online contest a couple of months ago which generated a lot of buzz among heritage, postcard, stamp and memorabilia collector at their FB page between August 25 to August 26, 2020 with the first 30 persons who correctly identify the postcards during the time frame are eligible to win.

Identify the Postcards

I got a private message from Mr. Carlos Iñigo Roxas ( postcard, stamp collector) about the online contest. Internet was intermittent, before it took us few hours before we can send the reply via the Ortigas Library FB site.

Identify the 3 American era postcard which includes 1. Insular Ice Plant, 2.) Road of Antiquity Colon street view of old Cebu and 3.) Fort Malabang in Mindanao.

Personally got two of the three postcards in my private collection. I later found out that Mr. Carlos Iñigo Roxas, Mr. Allan Martinez, Mr. Ian Millare,Ms. Jasmine Goforth, Mr. Joaquin Carlos de Jesus, Mr. Conrado Bugayong,Mr. Dionne Caytiles and a couple of heritage advocates also won the top prizes too!

For Carlos Roxas and the author, It was bitter sweet victory, since it was a last minute reply due to slow internet connection.

I manage to get my note cards/ gift card about 1 month later. Since they only allow winners to claim them between ( Tuesday to Thursday)

For those who were not able to guess the postcards correctly, One can buy the limited note cards / gift cards at the Ortigas Library Foundation office and ideal gift for your friends, heritage advocates, postcard / note card collectors this yuletide season. Each box contains between 10 to 12 note card with various reprint of old postcards from American and Commonwealth era.

Maraming Salamat po sa inyo, Ortigas Library Foundation and Ms. Jennifer Santos.

Ortigas Library Foundation

Address: 2nd Floor, Ortigas Building, Ortigas corner Meralco Avenues, Ortigas Center, Pasig City
1602
Tel: (02) 631 1231

Far Eastern University Nicanor Reyes Sr. Memorial Building Vintage Postcard

Far Eastern University is one of the colleges and universities that is popular feature in many postcard issuance. Her art deco architectural style was an icon during the times.

One of the earliest known postcard feature was from the Philippine Education Company Incorporated, Which is the leading school supply company about 60 years ago.

Far Eastern University -Nicanor Reyes Sr. Building Postcard

The 3 known art deco buildings within Far Eastern University that were featured by PECO.

1.) The most recognizable one were Nicanor Reyes Sr. Memorial Building, 2.) Arellano High School ( Boy’s High School) and 3.) Girl’s High School.

The vintage postcard was bought a couple of years ago at a local stamp bourse for an equivalent of 2 burger meals.

Technical Description

Divided Back (c. 1907-1915) could be reprinted until mid- 1960’s
Type: Printed (Lithograph)

Far Eastern University, Nicanor Reyes Memorial Hall, Manila, Philippines

The postcard is in used good condition. Genuine Curteich-Chicago “CT Photo Colorlit” No. 7B-H1061. Philippine Education Co., Inc. Manila, PI. No. 4028.

Produced with scalloped or straight edges and with a smooth or linen textured surface.

Philippine Educational Company Incorporated

Philippine Educational Company Incorporated(PECO) was the one stop shop for school supplies, postcards, books, magazines, pencils, drafting materials, toys, imported items among other stuffs. Our great grandparents, grandparents or even parents enjoyed the heydays of the premier business district in the country.

The original PECO shop at 101 Escolta Avenue, Manila was founded by Verne Miller, a Thomasite schoolteacher, who landed in the Philippines in 1901. Surviving the American, Japanese and destruction of the last world war.

Their business eventually moved out of the financial district by the mid- 1950’s to Makati Commercial Center and the operations spanned for more than 70 years.

One of the items which was quite popular was their postcards, Some of the postcards were even sold to nearby town, cities and provinces for students, tourists and postcard collectors.

PECO eventually folded-up by the mid -1970’s due to strict competition, import regulations and other problems which affected the operation of the company.

According to some resellers and old time postcard/ stamp dealers, PECO postcards circulated until the mid -1970’s in Metro Manila well up to early 1980’s for far flung provinces. A postcard then would only cost few centavos and some would be send abroad.

I have two aunts which collected stamps and postcards told me that majority of their collection were lost during the great Binondo fire in the late 1960’s.

Written Letter and Stamps

In a letter apparently from an exchange student and her host family back in Philadelphia: “Greetings from Manila. You really should visit these islands someday. It’s wonderful to be back home – my parents are both well, and the city has grown tremendously. There are many new buildings all over, but there is still a lot of poverty and the downtown section is as dirty as ever. Will write again. Best Love, Jo.”

The postcard was mailed from Manila to 9512 Hilspach St, Philadelphia, United States with 3 stamps which featured Marcelo H. Del Pilar ( 5 centavos face value per stamp) dated September 25, 1958.

Note: According to a stamp and postcard collectors- The Marcelo H. Del Pilar stamps were issued in 1952 and might have circulated until early 1960’s.

Sources and References:

American Regime Manila Thru Postcards (part 1)

American Regime Manila Thru Postcards (part 2)

American Regime Manila Thru Postcards ( part 3)

American Regime Manila Thru Postcards (part 4)

Personal interview from postcard collectors and dealers

Philippine Postcards page 130 to 137 Consuming Passions

Philippine Postcards.com:

Vintage Mount Rushmore Postcard

Mount Rushmore is an iconic monument in South Dakota state of the United States of America. This popular landmark is always featured in postcards, photos and memorabilia items along with Arlington cemetery, Both monuments serves as a living testaments of the bravery and heroism of the Americans.

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Mount Rushmore postcard -probably printed around 1960’s

I got this postcard from a fellow postcard collector few years ago from a local stamp collecting club meeting at the iconic Manila Central Post Office.

Mount Rushmore

Mount Rushmore is located in Black Hills in Keystone, South Dakota and the project execution from 1927 to 1941, a period of about 14 years. The sculptor of the project was John Gutzon de la Mothe Borglum (March 25, 1867 – March 6, 1941) ans was continued by his son James Lincoln de la Mothe Borglum (April 9, 1912 – January 27, 1986).

The sculpture bore the 60-foot (18 m) heads of Presidents George Washington (1732–1799), Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826), Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919), and Theodore Roosevelt (1809–1865). The total project cost cost US$989,992.32 with at least 400 workers involved in the project.

At least 2 million tourists would visit the historic site every year and is one of the top 3 source of revenues of the state of South Dakota.

The iconic landmark was the site where the current president Donald Trump led the 4th of July 2020 celebration.

According to some critics, the local American Indians who consider the Black Hills to be sacred ground.

Happy 4th of July celebrations and Happy Independence Day !

Vintage 1960’s Manila Postcards

Manila is the gateway into the country. A great place to capture her famous city-views, buildings, ruins, historical places, aerial views thru the lenses of a professional photographer and mass producing them for tourist market thru postcards.

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Department of Finance, Legislative Building, Manila Cityhall, GSIS building, Manila Metropolitan Theater, Quezon bridge and Luneta park are some of the important buildings captured in this aerial shot – JMC press ( Goodwill Bookstore circa 1967)

The parents of Ms. Maria Teresa Cancio-Suplico, Mr. Manuel and Juana Cancio who founded 3 bookstores at the foot of the Escolta Bridge, Manila. These 3 were named Educational, Goodwill and National.

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Chinese garden arch- Luneta park – This postcard was printed by Kruger company and distributed by National Bookstore

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Aerial shot of Manila pier, buildings, aduana, intramuros are clearly seen in this postcard. This postcard was printed by Kruger company and distributed by National Bookstore.

Vintage 1960’s Manila Postcards

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World Health Organization building located along United Nations Avenue formerly called Isaac Peral is the headquarter of WHO Asia-Pacific

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colorful jeepneys which ply the route of Blumentritt- Libertad, Pasay and vice versa within Luneta Park, Manila

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Lagoon at the Rizal Park with Daily Star, Volkswagen and Manila Hilton along T.M. Kalaw street was printed by Kruger and distributed by National Bookstore.

There is also a similar postcard print but with Japanese characters at the back portion, probably intended for the Japanese tourist market.

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Fort Santiago and Dr. Jose Rizal cell ruins printed by Kruger and distributed by National Bookstore

Goodwill Bookstore also printed several thematic postcards which were distributed in many smaller bookstores in the provinces.

They also have several lenticular or 3-D postcards which were quite popular in the tourist market. These were categorized into Philippine dances, flowers, religious and well-known landmarks.

According to some serious postcard collectors, They have estimated that JMC and Goodwill Bookstore might have issued between 150 to 200 thematic postcards from the 1960’s until mid- 1980’s.

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Agriculture and Finance Building (Agrifina) neo-classical architecture, water fountain, Manila Cathedral and MD bus transit had a route from Quiapo to Bangkal in Makati. – JMC 1967 ( Goodwill Bookstore) 

According to a September 12, 2017 Facebook post of Ms. Maria Teresa Cancio-Suplico

Goodwill through its printing arm JMC Press, produced beautiful postcards that were photographed by 2 Japanese experts in photography who stayed for at least a month in the Philippines to go around the country on a mission to photograph our best Philippine tourist spots like Mayon Volcano, Pasonanca Park in Zamboanga, & many others.

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Dr. Jose Rizal monument and Luneta Park- printed by JMC 1967 ( Goodwill Bookstore)

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Arch of the Centuries- University of Santo Tomas -printed by JMC 1967 ( Goodwill Bookstore)

Some of these postcards were pasted onto greeting cards that were die-cut to fit the postcard & the resulting frame around the postcard was embossed in gold. These greeting cards were works of art in their own way.

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Aerial view of Luneta and other government buildings -printed by JMC 1967 ( Goodwill Bookstore)

This postcard showed the other parts of Manila which included portion of Intramuros, post office,newly planted trees and main boulevards.

Manila is much cleaner with less visible pollution 50 or 60 years ago compared today. Some of the heritage buildings are no longer there, But only postcards, photos and collective memories are highly cherished.

Happy 449th anniversary founding of Manila !

Note: postcards were collected by the author. Postcard copyright from JMC Press/ Goodwill and Kruger/ National Bookstore

Bibliography, Sources and References:

Personal interviews with postcard collectors from the Philippines ( Mr. Rogelio de Jesus,  Mrs. Melissa Perez, Mr. Iggy Tuazon, Mr. Dionne Taeza, Mr. Federico Ligon)

Goodwill Bookstore proprietor : Ms. Maria Teresa Cancio-Suplico

Collins English Dictionary : Postal Card

Personal interview from postcard collectors

Philippine Postcards page 130 to 137 Consuming Passions

Philippine Postcards.com: https://www.philippinepostcards.com/

Puente Colgante. ( 2005). In Virgilio Almario ( Ed.), Sagisag Kultura ( Vol 1). Manila: National Commission for Culture and the Arts.

Fish Head Mermaid Fantasy Postcard

Postcard collecting is fascinating hobby, Postcard companies have printed some fantasy issues which caught the fancy among collectors worldwide.

Most are printed in Europe, United States, Latin America and Asia. There are different kinds of folklores from all over the world about mermaid.

While arranging some old postcards during the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ). The postcard was bought in 1973 and collected by my mom at a photo studio in Manila Chinatown which also sold photo postcards as souvenir for tourists, curiosity item and for local deltiologist.

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Fish head with human legs featured in postcard

Real Photo Postcard (RPPC types)

This type of postcard is called Real Photo Postcard (RPPC) types employed in the manufacture of most postcard images. It is a collective  term recognizes a distinction between the real photo process. It was quite popular in the early 1900 in Europe and United States and eventually spreading in many parts of the globe. The dimension is usually (3-1/2″ x 5-1/2″) as standard vintage postcards.

Among the first to use this type of medium were the rich aristocrats, royalties and those who wanted to remember their dead relatives or newly born child. It is sometimes called ” Recuerdo de Patay” memories of the dead. Some local collectors would also collect the photos of prominent personalities like Dr. Jose P. Rizal.

Local entrepreneurs hired them to record area events and the homes of prominent citizens, civic parade, birthdays, historical buildings, calamities among others.

This eventually became more popular as schools and personal family photos were printed with hundreds of copies sold either as souvenir class photo or for giveaway. Having one such opportunity would give glimpse of a rare opportunity for family members to keep their photos for remembrance. Since getting a photo is considered as luxury in the early 1900’s.

One can affix stamps at the back portion with simple message. This fish head with human torso is different from the usual mermaid postcard in the market. During those time there were already skeptic people which do not believe in these photos.

But it adds on the the overall appeal for the postcard collecting community. Glad to share this rare find.

Sources and Bibliographies:

Personal communication with local postcard collectors

Bernhard, Willi: Bernhard Picture Postcard Catalogue: Germany 1870-1945, 1982

Sante, Luc: Folk Photography: The American Real-Photo Postcard 1905-1930, YETI Books, 2009

Smith, Jack H.: Postcard Companion: The Collector’s Reference, Wallace-Homestead, Radnor, PA, (1989)