Going to antique stores is the ultimate trip down memory lane. People can go inside and reminisce about an old oil company sign or Coca-Cola advertisements.
My favorite part of going into a shop is looking at postcards. It allows me to look at different places in its heyday or during another era and read messages people wrote to friends and loved ones.
I took a recent road trip across parts of the American Heartland, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska. I decided, however, to only go to one antique shop so as not to encourage my habits of purchasing old road maps and postcards.
In Woodbine, Iowa, I bought four postcards that day (it only cost a total of $4), but one that struck me was the Hotel Pawnee in North Platte, Nebraska, a Lincoln Highway community.
On the back, Bee wrote a note to Art Allright in Denison, Iowa on Friday June 23, 1944.
Hope everything is OK by you. I dropped a line to Carroll. Don’t think best I come to Denison this weekend but wiring Margaret back with you if she can possibly make it. Jerry is coming home for 30 days… Barbara was at Grandma Lilly’s for dinner last nite. I walked over to Lils but didn’t go up there. Betty Dilley was here last nite. She sure is a sweet one.
The postcard did not mention the hotel, but it did look at visiting friends and family.
The postcard is the traveler’s diary, a place to open themselves up to loved ones or friends.
Little hotel background
The Hotel Pawnee, originally called the Hotel Yancey, is an eight-story brick Georgian Revival hotel designed by Omaha architect F.A. Henninger. It was constructed in 1929 by Alex Beck, who also designed and built the Fox Theater across the street from the hotel. Minor alterations have occurred on the first level façade, but the hotel retains its historic integrity, according to a National Park Service National Registrar of Historic Places inventory nomination form.
It recently served as an assisted living facility.
For more on the hotel’s specifications look at the nomination form at https://npgallery.nps.gov/nrhp/GetAsset?assetID=5cf09e66-51d3-44b4-bd5c-653da7a221e1