Post Card for the Capt. Thos. Espy Post at ACFL&MH

front of post card

Post card front, depicting post membership in 1905.

This is a general use post card I designed for the Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall’s Civil War Room, “The Capt. Thos. Espy Post No. 153 of the Grand Army of the Republic”.

The room was recently renovated and is open for docent tours and research. It was the meeting place of a chapter of one of the first organized veteran’s organizations in history, certainly in the United States, and housed all the artifacts the members deemed important and held dear. Once there were about 7,000 GAR posts, now there are fewer than a dozen and this room is possibly the most intact of all. Because it was an organization for veterans of one conflict, when the last member veteran died in 1937, the door was locked and kept closed for about 50 years turning the room into a sort of dusty closet, but the interest of individuals and organizations raised the money and the expertise to return it to its former grandeur.

You can read all about the post at the ACFL&MH website, www.carnegiecarnegie.org, and if you are in the area make sure you visit between 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. on Saturdays. Even if you don’t care for Civil War memorabilia or military re-enactments, the room’s historical information is a delicious find. Just reading the stories—and enjoying the prose style of the era—from the Catalogue of Relics is enough to take you back to another era and way of life.

All those abbreviations in the title, but in days past, when the physical letters of a type font were often in short supply, paper was expensive and space to print at a premium, everything was abbreviated that could be. Many people think abbreviations are a lazy habit of modern convenience, but in those early days of typesetting—and earlier when manuscripts were handwritten—abbreviations key to getting as much information out as possible.

back of post card

Post card back, with a vintage image of the room and the GAR badge, plus the 9th PA Reserves' flag.

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