2009-05-22 / Columnists

Historical Views of the Rockaways

Having A Banner Time At Rockaway Beach
From The Rockaway Museum Commentary by Emil Lucev, Curator Dedicated To The Memory Of Leon S. Locke

Many types of novelty post cards have been offered for sale at souvenir shops in the Rockaways of yore. Some were of wood, some leather, some were squeakers that when pressed or squeezed, emitted an audible sound made by whatever was pictured on the card. But for some sounds you had to use your imagination! Don't ask!

A few issues had real felt pennants glued on them, with the name Rockaway printed on them. This pennant card twice tells of having a good time at the beach, and another says simply, around a picture of the devil … "Tell him to go to Rockaway, it's all the same anyway!" The pennant on this card is red/orange and the devil card pennant was green.

My most prized cards are the ones with a little door to be opened, and many small photos folded inside pop out. Each had another view other than the one on the front of the post card. Some were in color and others in black and white, and a few doors were flowers or clam shell. One card was of May West and rather risqué, but today it would be in the XXX category. However, it is still good for a laugh.

Many cards have add-on items from metal sculptures to embroidery plus real hair arrangements. Imagine a card today featuring our sewage treatment plant? C'mon laugh out loud! I can't hear you!

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