The People of Pancho

At Play In The Archive

Flying High in the Hamburg Sky

In my great-grandpa Leo’s treasure pile, I came across these super fun novelty postcards dated 1911. There is no writing on the back of either one of them, except for the date and identification of the studio where they were taken.


First is great-grandpa Leo in the pilot’s seat, followed by an unidentified friend. Notice that the background underneath the plane is different in each image. Do you think those locations were specially chosen, or just random? The guys are also wearing the same hat, so it makes me wonder if the photo session included a costume, rather like the old-timey photo studio shoots sometimes available at amusement parks today.

airplane1911 3

airplane1911 1

Fun, right?

In other news, it’s Robert Burns Day, so turn your hearts to the Highlands, and choke down some haggis if you must. Personally, I’ll be focusing on the shortbread, and of course, the whiskey. My very favorite version of Burns’ poem My Heart’s in the Highlands is set to music by Arvo Pärt, performed by Else Torp and Christopher Bowers. It’s used to great effect in the magnificent movie The Great Beauty, but you can hear it on youtube here.

Until next time, dear People, Slàinte!

5 comments on “Flying High in the Hamburg Sky

  1. Amy
    January 25, 2015

    This is probably a stupid question, but how did they get into the seat? Cute!


    • Pancho
      January 25, 2015

      I have no idea, but it’s probably not as far off the ground as it looks.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Carl (Smokey) Stoneback
    May 13, 2016

    The Plane Was A “PROP”. They Used Balloons, Boats, Fake Jail Bars And All Kinds Of Things Just To Take And Sell Photos. Most Were Put Onto Post Cards To Use For Correspondence. Postcards In That Time Frame Were Printed In The Billions. Germany Was The Biggest Maker And Many American Cards Were Sent To Germany To Be “COLORIZED”. During And After WW1… Not So Much.


    • Pancho
      May 17, 2016

      Makes perfect sense, Smokey. Thank you for the information!


  3. Naz
    May 29, 2023

    Helloo mate great blog


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