Postcard Publishers

A few dominant firms competed for a share in the lucrative Dublin postcard market. These included Lawrence, Eason & Son Limited and Hely's Limited. Hely's published an interesting image of Vartry Reservoir in Stillorgan around 1906. This scheme deflected water from the River Vartry into Roundwood Reservoir from 1863 and resulted in 85,000 cubic metres of water being delivered to the city of Dublin daily. It was a popular success, not just for the local area, which is why the publishers wanted to portray it.

Many local publishers also wanted a share in the market so they concentrated on local views for their subjects. Chas. Cook & Sons was one such publisher. He managed to find a niche for himself in the valuable market of Kingstown (now Dun Laoghaire).

This Chas Cook image (right) is of Lower George's Street in Dun Laoghaire. The view provides valuable information regarding, in this case, the differing facades of shop fronts. P.J.Hand is one of the shops visible here. It was a confectionery shop and was located at number 90 Lower George's Street from 1890 to 1910. The other shop was Watsons and it was a boot market from 1905 to 1907.

Interestingly some postcard publishers put their own stamp on postcards, for example, Woolstone Brothers who were a London based firm and used a trademark Milton stamp as their symbol.

Understandably not all publishers managed to survive in this competitive market. Wrench Limited would be one such example. They held a large share of the postcard market at the turn of the century. However they ran into problems financing their many shops and display stands, and made the mistake of exclusively carrying their own products. Their postcards remained available until some time after 1904.


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