Track & Field Day – Brooklyn, NY (1906)

Miss Lillian Rothberg lived in Brooklyn, New York – the most-populated borough of New York City.

In August of 1906, Lillian received a postcard from a friend elsewhere in Brooklyn.

(The postcard bears a street address and the word “city” to indicate that it was being mailed within the same area.  The Post Office no longer permits this usage.)

On the face of the postcard is a delightful illustration of young men running a race with hurdles.

 Two of the runners are still in flight over the wooden hurdles.

The illustration was made by G. D. Rowlandson (George Derville Rowlandson, 1861-1928)), a noted English painter of sports and equestrian scenes.

The scene is British; there is a Union Jack flying over the pavilion.

American Track and Field competitions are derived from the “Sports Day”  traditions in English schools.

Although I cannot distinguish a printer’s mark, I believe the postcard was printed in Great Britain.

Lillian’s friend, with no place to write a message, scrawled a note on the face.

The friend, addressing “Dear Lillian” expresses a hope to see her soon.

I was charmed by this lively drawing of a sports competition, and am glad that it survived for more than a century.

We may believe that Lillian had treasured it throughout her life.

(Fun Fact:  as of 2020, Brooklyn has more residents than the city of Chicago.

If Brooklyn was still an independent city, it would be the second largest city in the US.)

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