Images of the Past by Walter Zielinski & James Owen

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   The Holland Land Office Museum acquired more than 2,000 postcards and other memorabilia from local collector and museum friend, Mr. Walter Zielinski.  As a tribute to Mr. Zielinski, we are pleased to share his collection.  Holland Purchase Historical Society Board Member, Mr. James R. Owen has volunteered many hours researching information to provide descriptions of the postcards.  

    Color or colorization?  What's the difference?  History tells us that postcards were first published in 1869 in Germany and were mainly printed in black and white.  It was not until about 1898 that postcards were routinely colorized, a process in which publishers sent their photographs to Italy or India, where lithography was an art, to be colorized. 

   Colorization was found to be more attractive to the consumer and increased sales.  Only problem was that the artists in Europe or India had to use their imagination when coloring the photos and most of the time, the colors were artificial, not accurate, or reliable.  In our collection, many postcards highlight particular buildings in Batavia which can show the buildings in up to three different color schemes!  Colorization of postcards ended around 1930 when printing techniques improved and postcards were printed in true to life colors.  Most collectors today prefer black and white postcards.

    New images will continually be added to this page and we invite you to check back for updates.  Click on an image for a larger view and description.  Enjoy!!

Mr. Walter Zielinski




Mr. James R. Owen
All Albums » Post Cards » YMCA, early 1900s Search  
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« Previous YMCA, early 1900s
This early postcard of the old, old YMCA in Batavia is from the collection of James R. Owen.  The Alva Smith House on Park Place had been built about 1820.  In 1900 Byron Huntley, then head of the Johnston Harvester Company, offered to pay Miss Alice Smith the $4,000 she was asking as a price if the YMCA agreed to build a suitable meeting hall in the building.  The trustees raised $2,100 to pay for building and redecorating and in April The Daily News reported that the YMCA at last had a home.
This early postcard of the "old," "old" YMCA in Batavia is from the collection of James R. Owen. The Alva Smith House on Park Place had been built about 1820. In 1900 Byron Huntley, then head of the Johnston Harvester Company, offered to pay Miss Alice Smith the $4,000 she was asking as a price if the YMCA agreed to build a suitable meeting hall in the building. The trustees raised $2,100 to pay for building and redecorating and in April The Daily News reported that the YMCA at last had a home.
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