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Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Raphael Tuck & Sons

This picture shows a train crossing the Delaware River - something George Washington did back on Christmas Day in 1776. It sure was a lot easier in 1905 when the train took you across!
There is a company's name in the bottom right-hand corner of the post card. I tried to find something about it on line, but could not. The best I could find was that there was an Oscar Woodworth in Trenton in 1905. It is in a part of a newspaper that also included the words: "violet scented rice toilet powder". It sounds to me like O. Woodworth was a five and dime type of a store.
The train is on the Morrisville–Trenton Railroad Bridge, which today is a rail bridge across the Delaware River between Morrisville, Pennsylvania and Trenton, Mercer County, New Jersey, in the United States.

The bridge carries the Amtrak Northeast Corridor trains and SEPTA Trenton Line as well as non-revenue trains for NJ Transit's Northeast Corridor Line that have terminated at the Trenton Transit Center bound for the Morrisville Yard.
This post card was printed by the Raphael Tuck & Sons Company. It was founded in 1866 by Raphael Tuck, a seller of furniture and picture frames. After only a few months in business he expanded to become an important dealer in popular lithographic prints and greeting cards. In 1871, after concentrating on the picture side of the business, Tuck’s three sons joined the firm and they began publishing their first Christmas cards, printed in their native Prussia. When Raphael retired in 1881, his son Adolph took over the family business. He opened offices in New York in 1882 and Paris in 1885 to facilitate orders and distribution. By 1894, a year after they were appointed official printers to Queen Victoria, they printed their first Souvenir Card. When postal regulations were finally changed after much lobbying by Tuck and others, it provided better opportunities to enter the postcard market. Tuck immediately began the printing of postcards in chromolithography, and their twelve card set of London became the first illustrated card set in England. After opening their new facilities in 1899, Raphael House became the first publisher to print postcards in a larger size that we now call standard. They went on to publish a very wide variety of card types and all sorts of printed matter, including many innovative designs, eventually becoming a major publishing house. Not one to miss an opportunity, Tuck also became a major supplier of postcard accessories such as albums and display frames for cards. While most of Tuck’s cards were printed in Prussia, Saxony (a.k.a. Germany), and Holland until the First World War, the designs on them not made at Raphael House usually came from artists local to the subject at hand working through their international branches. After Raphael’s death in 1900 his son Adolph ran the business until his own death in the Great War. The firm was then taken over by his son Reginald. Their London factory and offices were destroyed in 1940 during a German bombing raid, but they began publishing anew after the war. Reginald died in 1954 and the business then passed to his brother Desmond who retired in 1959. Soon after the firm was purchased by Purnell & Sons.

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