I recently became a member of the Pacific Northwest Postcard Club (aka PNPCC). I am a little surprised that it took me so long to find my people – but only a little. Postcard club members (as well as postcard show regulars) are a different species than online traders. Club members are old-school collectors. I often feel like I am part of a historical society when I am around that group of people – not that the age of community has anything to do with that, but their interests and knowledge base sways that way. It is easy to strike up a conversation about the totem pole in Pioneer Square and whether the pagoda preceded the horse trough (trough came first). Or what year chrome processing became popular (started 1939 although not popular until after WWII) vs. lithographs. It’s not atypical to point out discrepancies in photos or chuckle at old-fashioned humor. When trading online, that banter is non-existent – perusing postcards online is nothing more than tedium. That said, I do have a few penpals that I met online and I love exchanging postcards with them!
Much of the PNPCC meeting is spent sitting at long tables leafing through hundreds of boxes of postcards – not unlike a postcard show. There are some vendors as well as a few tables of postcards that the club owns and sells. Lunch was served around noon and there was a short club business meeting after lunch. Then it was back to digging for treasures. I’m glad I joined the club. It’s pleasant to spend a few hours each month learning more about postcards and history instead of worrying about laundry and weeds.
Here are the main differences between old-school and new-school collectors that I can see:
|Postcard Age||generally OLD||mostly NEW|
|Personal Correspondence||NO||generally YES|
|Condition||not always relavent||generally NEW|
|Set Completion||YES - emphasis on rarities||YES|
|Postcard Size||generally 3 1/2" x 5"||4" x 6"|
|Used or Unused||either||either|
The club meets the first Sunday of every month at the Lake City Community Center.