Vintage mail art and memories of my youth, from Alicia Starr


Alicia sent very unusual and vintage mail art that stirred all kinds of memories of my younger days in Illinois.

Yes, an old typewriter, with "Give All",...All! And a nice red  "recycle" stick-on piece, too.

But most intriguing is the A4 paper that the typewriter is on

...faded, burnt, so vintage that it might crumble in handling.

Look carefully( lower right corner below:) is a MAP!

And I immediately recognized it as my ol' home state of Illinois, USA.

Definitely the MISSissippi River dividing Iowa from Illinois. Googled "Carman" for exact spot!

But also on the top corner was "Burlington" which is just south of Davenport, Iowa.

So, I knew where I was...I love "maps"!

But no need to google "C.B.& Q.", me knows from childhood what that is!

The C.B.&Q RR = Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Rail Road....which in my neighborhood in Chicago, by Cicero Avenue,we knew as "the Burlington train"...we lived on the southside of the tracks, just three blocks away from the "yards". Often speeding "Zypher" trains would zoom through, but there were local commuter trains as well. When attending high school in LaGrange, I often road the Burlington, doing last minute homework with a few classmates on the "upper deck". Then when I went to DeKalb for my Masters Degree at was the Burlington train that took me home on weekends or holidays! Nice memories!

Vintage memories you sent, Alicia...thanks so much!

And also thanks for the little "bunny" (or is it a "duck"..or scissors?),

and the postage stamps: Dragons! And ZALOP! xxx

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Comment by vizma bruns on March 13, 2012 at 2:01am

better late than never!! Many happy returns Alicia!!

Comment by Alicia Starr on March 12, 2012 at 6:36pm

thats a beauty!! thanks Katerina. Have something almost ready to send you.

Comment by Katerina Nikoltsou (MomKat) on March 12, 2012 at 5:24pm

'Love the vintage typewriters. Here is one for your birthday, Alicia!

Happy Birthday...ΧΡΟΝΙΑ ΠΟΛΛΑ! (in Greek)

Comment by Alicia Starr on March 11, 2012 at 6:05pm

Nothing like those old manual typewriters and the indentations the keys make on the page. ahh, those were the days my friends....

Comment by Katerina Nikoltsou (MomKat) on March 11, 2012 at 3:23pm

From you Vizma...hmmm, perhaps a RED bag? :-)

Comment by vizma bruns on March 11, 2012 at 4:00am

Katerina, that is fabulous...a Greek typewriter called Olympia!! One day when you have mail artists' block (if there is such a thing?) would you please write me a letter on this machine? It doesn't have to make sense (it wouldn't to me anyway!) but I'd love to see all those characters pummelled into a piece of paper to put up on my wall!! And what would you like from me in return?? I'm always asking things of you!! ;-P

Comment by Mim Golub Scalin on March 10, 2012 at 8:03pm

What nostalgia.  I grew up between Humboldt Park and Garfield Park on Franklin Boulevard in Chicago and a train ran parallel to the boulevard just 2 blocks south. I loved the sound of the train. I'm not sure what line it was. It ran east and west. Milwaukee road? nah, that would have been a north south route. In any case, between the typewriters and the railroad memories, I'm getting all "farklempt."

Comment by Katerina Nikoltsou (MomKat) on March 10, 2012 at 3:20pm

Someone asked if we have that vintage item known as a "typewriter"?

And I have two...portable ones, bought just before the first home commuter came.

One is the same brand as Alicia's very vintage image : "Olympia".

This was my "Greek" typewriter,

see the keys that are : Α...Σ....Δ...Φ..Γ..?

The other typewriter is a portable "Royal".

This one was used for when I did writing in English.

It was before the days of the IBM "ball" typewriter!

And  now, the "White Leopard" that purrs, and with a "click"

can change from English to Greek to Swahili to Chinese...

(and one day soon, we may not need a keyboard to "type" or "touch", just "speak".

Comment by Katerina Nikoltsou (MomKat) on March 9, 2012 at 12:10pm

Wow, Alicia...those are old locomotives from the "yards" in Cicero! My brother and I would play around them, climb up on them, ...get chased away by the railroad detective! And always, always be careful not to cross the "express" Zephyer tracks...ya never knew when one would go zooming through!

Yes, indeedy, I would loooooove a few more pages of Illinois . Thank you so much xxx

Comment by vizma bruns on March 9, 2012 at 3:23am

Yeah cool. And what IS that scissors rabbit thing? I love it!



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