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Saturday, March 22, 2014

Cantra Loop, Contra Loop or Cantara Loop?

The scene on this post card is of a small section of what was then the Southern Pacific railroad in northern California. Today, of course, it is owned by the Union Pacific Railroad. I published some information about another post card with a picture of this loop 6 months ago on September 6, 2013. You can read about The Loop in that blog posting.

I wanted to show this post card because even though the name is on the post card twice (once on the front and once on the back) the printer and publisher both missed the fact that it is spelled incorrectly both times.

On the front The Cantara Loop (correct spelling) is spelled "Cantra". On the back it is spelled "Contra".
They certainly got the rest of the information right, though! If you have never been to northern California you have missed some very beautiful and dramatic scenery.

The printer of the post card is the H.H. Tammen Curio Company. The logo is the arrow in the middle of the card pointing up to the little space alien-type critter.
Mr. Tammen would probably be mortified at the double mistake; he was an owner and editor of the Denver Post for many years.

They were a novelty dealer and important publisher of national view-cards and Western themes in continuous tone and halftone lithography. Their logo does not appear on all their cards but other graphic elements are often remain the same.

H. H. Tammen (1856-1924) Harry Heye Tammen was born in Baltimore, Maryland on March 6, 1856, the son of a German immigrant pharmacist. He attended Knapps Academy in Baltimore, then worked in Philadelphia before moving to Denver in 1880.

With his partner Charles A. Stuart he worked as a Denver bartender in 1880, and in 1881 they established the firm of H.H. Tammen & Co. (which in 1896 became the H.H. Tammen Curio Co., with partners Carl Litzenberger and Joseph Cox) in Denver, Colorado. Deeply interested in the study of mineralogy, he published a promotional journal called Western Echoes magazine, "Devoted to Mineralogy, Natural History, Botany, &c. &c." Volume 1 Number 1 is copyrighted 1882.

In 1895 Tammen formed a partnership with F.G. Bonfils (whom he had met at the Chicago World's Fair) and they became co-owners and co-editors of the Denver Post. Their publishing business flourished, and Tammen's business successes made him a wealthy man. In 1917 Buffalo Bill Cody happened to die while in Denver, and Tammen (one of the city's biggest boosters) offered Cody's widow $10,000 if she would allow Cody to be buried in Denver; she accepted, and the ensuing funeral procession drew 50,000 people. He established the H.H. Tammen Trust in 1924, providing essential health care for children of families who cannot afford to pay. Tammen died July 19, 1924. The H.H. Tammen Curio Co. was in business until 1953, and possibly as late as 1962.

Here is the trademark of the publisher, but, for the life of me, I cannot connect it to any company. Any assistance you can provide will be GREATLY appreciated.
Obviously it is a company with two names; the first one starts with a B and the second one starts with an N.

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If you know anything about the history of the cards, the trains or the locations, please add them.