“You Can Use the Old Mast” – Terre Haute, Indiana (1909)

Arthur Sutton was in Seaville, an unincorporated community in Cape May County, New Jersey.

Arthur wanted to sail, and wrote to the Brooks about an old mast that he might appropriate.

In June of 1909, Arthur received a postcard from the Brooks with the permission he sought – “yes, you may use that old mast…”.

The writer adds, “Hope you have lots of good sails this summer” and expresses a wish, “would like to take one with you”.

The postcard was mailed from Terre Haute, Indiana – it is not clear if the Brooks lived there or had traveled there.

Clearly, they had spent some time on the Jersey Shore and kept a boat there.

On the face of the postcard is an hand-colored photograph of the English town of Whitby.

Whitby is an ancient port city in the north of England; the ruins of the historic Abbey of Whitby still can be seen above the town.

Jet was mined in the area by the Romans, and the mining resumed in the Victorian era when jet beads were fashionable ornaments.

I am fairly certain that the postcard was printed in Great Britain, but I cannot find a printer’s mark or publisher’s insignia.

There is a faint impression of the receiving postmark in Seaville.

One hopes that Arthur enjoyed a fine summer of sailing and that the Brooks were able to share an adventure.


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