Saturday, January 17, 2009

Boise, Idaho - Real Photo Postcards & Covers.

Mark Metkin has continued to send a few scans my way, including these real photo postcards and covers from Boise, Idaho. I have a beginning collection of postcards, some of which you see scattered throughout the blog, but covers (I am getting sophisticated now and no longer refer to them as mere envelopes!) are a relatively new item of interest. I had a few that came along with old family letters and always found postmark dates and towns to be of interest. However, running into Mark, and my recent foray into postal history, seems to have opened up a whole new avenue of research & collecting. Along with each cover or postcard I have included Mark's description just as he provided it. I have put any notations of my own in italics. Click on the pics for an enlarged view.
Boise real photo postcard - the Idan-ha Hotel building - mailed from Boise in 1915.
Boise real photo postcard - Main Street looking east and showing the Idan-ha Hotel towering above the surrounding buildings - mailed from Boise in 1910. Picture postcards are probably of more interest to your readers than covers (old envelopes to the uninitiated). Unfortunately, postcards did not come into vogue until after your great grandfather died. This photo likely dates from the year it was mailed because the Overland Building (subsequently enlarged and renamed the Eastman Building) is visible a couple blocks up the street.

I might disagree with Mark when he says postcards are probably more interesting to my readers then covers. Check out the following where you get the best of both, postmarks and a picture, all on a single cover.

Boise 1905 cover (Doremus machine cancel again) with engraved Idan-ha Hotel illustrated Indian advertising. In 1907, the Idan-ha filled with newspaper reporters while the "trial of the century" was followed across the country.

Another Boise 1905 cover (Doremus machine cancel again) with up-and-coming attorney W. E. Borah corner card and lithographed Lewis-Clark Exposition illustrated advertising

Only months away would be the assassination of Borah's friend, Governor Steunenberg. Borah would soon find himself preparing for the Haywood trial.

Boise 1903 cover (Doremus machine cancel) with lithographed Idan-ha Hotel illustrated building advertising.

Boise private mailing card (from before postcards) - Main Street looking east - unused, circa 1900. This view shows Main Street as your great grandfather might have seen it in his last year as governor. Note the wall papered over with signs on the sidewalk at the extreme left of the picture. Behind the wall was presumably an excavation, which would have been for the basement of a new building... the Idan-ha Hotel.

The Idan-ha Hotel in Boise opened for business on New Year's Day in 1901. At the time, it was the only six-story building in Idaho. It was also the only building in Idaho with an elevator.
You can view the Idan-ha stationary that goes along with the above cover on blog post: Frank Steunenberg to son Julian - February 2, 1905. Frank Steunenberg often stayed at the Idan-ha when in Boise on business.

Thanks again to Mark, for sharing a few items from your collection.
Here are a couple of covers from among the few I have on the blog. Now if I can only hunt down one of those postcards or covers with a Steunenberg, Idaho postmark.  

Spanish-American War cover addressed to Governor Steunenberg
Letter and cover from the Hotel Moscow

1 comment:

Tara A. Rowe said...

Oh! I have some of these fine covers, John. I'll have to dig 'em up, can 'em, and send 'em your way!