Humboldt County Historical Society

Humboldt Historian

Winter 2009: Volume 57, No. 4

Winter Honeymoon
Suzanne Forsyth with Bob & Ellen Durfee
After their wedding on December 20, 1964, the Durfees set off for Yosemite, but had another adventure instead.

Medicine Trails
Mavis McCovey & John F. Salter
A Karuk medicine woman shares her life and her culture in these excerpts from a newly published book.

Giving, Receiving, and Quarterbacking with Manny, Henry, and Frank - The Presence of the Past
Jerry Rohde
Three wise men offer three surprise gifts.

Christmas Notes
Mrs. Eugene Fountain
Early Christmases in Blue Lake, and some fun times with the Fountain family.

The Prettiest Tree
Naida Olsen Gipson
Remembering many happy Christmases, and one that would change all.

Hats of to Pickwick
Norman Smith
An enthusiastic passenger vows always to travel by stage, never by train.

Nellie Blake, Pioneer Wife - Christmas Prairie Companion
Charlie Blake
"Can you match the derring-do of this woman?" asks Charlie Blake in his tribute to Nellie.

The cover photo features the Arcata Union High School championship football team on January 13, 1913. It is one of many personal photographs in the Historical Society collections that are printed on post­cards, which the present writer has always been curious about. How did ordinary people in the early 1900s-a century before digital cameras and printers!-afford to have personal photographs printed onto postcards for use as day-to-day missives? It turns out that during the golden age of postcards, 1907 to 1915, Kodak came out with small affordable postcard cameras, bringing the masses into postcard creation. The cameras featured postcard size negatives and even a tiny door on the back of the camera body through which captions could be inscribed with an attached metal pen onto the negative itself.* Which also explains the handwritten captions printed on these postcards. Many of the personal-photograph postcards at the Historical Society have traveled through the mail, and so are not only postmarked, but contain notes which are often interesting, as in the case of the present postcard. In his short letter, the writer-and right guard-opens as he postpones coming out with the real point of his letter, which he finally puts in a postscript. The note was mailed to Alice Wass in Eureka. The writer, “C.C.;’ is identified in the Arcata High yearbook of 1913 as Ches­ter Carlson, “Alias: Squarie:’: ‘Dear Alice, Here we are-tough looking bunch, eh? The fellow above the + [second from right] is my brother. Say is that so about Miss Tower? Was that her name, got run over by a streetcar? Where and how did it happen? Had about 3 inches of snow at Warren Creek. Talk about rain. Mad River is bank full. Some danger of road be­ing washed out. Was out hunting Sunday. Got 6 ducks and 4 quail besides a good soaking Best Regards to all. C. C. P.S. There’s to be a play and dance here next Saturday night. Special auto stage from Eureka and return. Come if possible.’
— On The Cover