Part of an ongoing series looking at Kootenaiana selling on eBay.
A relatively unremarkable lithographed postcard of Kootenay Lake published by the Canada Drug and Book Co. drew 14 bids and sold for $56 US recently.
The caption states it was taken at Nelson, but it was more likely closer to Kaslo, judging from the high-peaked mountains.
The price likely had more to do with the card’s reverse than its front: it bore a 1907 postal cancellation from Perry Siding.
The Slocan Valley community’s post office actually opened that year. It only ever had two postmasters: P.M. Schonberg from 1907-10 and Gordon Hamilton from 1910 until its closure in 1949.
The postcard is addressed to Ella Sword of Maple Lake Station, Ontario and reads: “Dear Ella: Rec’d your pretty card and thanks very much. I think you are mistaken about me owing you a letter. You have dreamed that. However I will try and write you one of these days. Love to all, yours as ever, Maggie.”
The seller was in Toronto.
• A nice lithographed postcard of the BC Copper Company’s smelter at Greenwood sold for $48.50 US.
The smelter was one of three operating in the Boundary until shortly after the end of World War I. The others were at Boundary Falls and Grand Forks.
The ruins of the Greenwood smelter, including its brick smoke stack and slag piles are now part of Lotzkar Park.
The seller was in Port Perry, Ontario and the buyer in Nelson.
• Turns out Arrow Lakes historian Milt Parent’s grandfather is depicted in that 1909 postcard of the Comaplix baseball team we told you about last week.
Eugene Leveque, the team’s catcher, is second to last on the right, next to the team manager.
The postcard, which sold for $113.50 US, also caught the attention of CBC’s Radio West, which interviewed Parent about it last week.
Parent said his grandfather did a lot of ballplaying in his native St. Boniface before moving to Comaplix around 1908. He later came to Nakusp.
“When I was a kid I used to play in his basement,” Parent told host Rebecca Zandbergen. “He had a whole bunch of bats and mitts and things.”
However, after Leveque died, none of the equipment was saved.
Comaplix itself vanished after fires in 1914 and 1915.
• The above-mentioned postcard wasn’t the only item in this column to earn some airtime on CBC Radio.
Greg Scott appeared on Daybreak to discuss that leather-covered bottle that Nelson’s St. Saviour’s Anglican Church auctioned off as a fundraiser.
The bottle, which dates to around 1890, came to Nelson via the Nigerian port of Old Calabar, Victoria, and Grand Forks. Since the mid-1970s, it’s been in the church hall.
Despite all the publicity, only one person bid, winning the bottle for the starting price of $50. The buyer was from Quesnel.
This story will appear in the March 1 edition of the West Kootenay Advertiser.