Bon voyage on the S.S. Great Northern in 1916

Apr 27, 2015

Relive the glamour of old-fashioned steamship travel with this colorful passenger list from the S.S. Great Northern, a ship of the Great Northern Pacific Steamship Company. Now in our Orion’s Attic eBay store (Historical Memorabilia section), the passenger list unfolds into a panoramic view of luxury travel at its finest. Lounge in the sun or cut a rug on the dancing deck. Listen to sweet melodies in the music room. Spend an afternoon on the beach at Waikiki. This passenger list was for Voyage No. 4, which left Honolulu on February 4, 1916 and arrived in San Francisco on Feb. 9, 1916. What makes our latest piece of historical ephemera so great is the typed note that is hand-signed. It was written to Miss M. Miller in care of The City Hall, Kansas City, Missouri....

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Searching the streets of Civil War Boston for a woman I have never seen...

Apr 24, 2015

[Editor’s Note: Orion’s Attic obtained an exceptional group of rare books — three editions of the Boston Almanac for the years 1862, 1863 and 1880. I had no idea that they would take me on an emotional journey. Following is the story these three volumes have to tell. They are now available in the Books department of our eBay store, which you can always access at OrionsAttic.com.] I did some more time traveling this week, going back to Boston early in the Civil War and hanging out there through 1880. I even met a woman whose name I still do not know, a woman I can’t stop wondering about. Boston in 1862 was filled with tension. Business leaders like everyone else were frightened by the onset of what Boston Almanac for 1862 editor George...

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This Just In: Figural Whiskey Decanters and Whimsy

Apr 7, 2015

Our newly acquired 100-plus piece figural whiskey decanter collection is so enticing that it could drive teetotalers to hit the bottles – or at least begin collecting them. The first batch of 25 whiskey decanters and counting is now in our Orion’s Attic eBay store. (We’ve also placed a few in our booth at Emporium Antiques in downtown Frederick, Maryland.) The collection we obtained from an Alexandria, Virginia home during one of our estate liquidations is focused largely on the 1960s and 1970s and covers four of the most prominent makers – Jim Beam, Ezra Brooks, McCormick and the Foss Company. If you’re partial to bourbon, you may already know the story of how these kinds of bottles came to life. If not, sip the basics here. The preeminent maker is, of course, the...

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This Just In: Antique Medicine Bottles

Mar 20, 2015

Got a headache? Suffering from adrenal problems? Your teeth causing you pain? Got a cough that just won’t go away? Have a body part that needs disinfecting or powdering? Regardless of what ails you, Orion’s Attic has a hint of the solution … if you lived in the 1800s. Thanks to our latest find — a mini estate liquidation we did in Silver Spring, Maryland — we just created a virtual 19th century apothecary in our eBay store. We have already listed more than 20 great antique medicine bottles and have a whole crate full still to go. Many date back more than a century while others are from the mid- 1900s. The group also includes bottles that contained alcohol, ink and food additives. We’ve placed them in the Bottles department in our eBay...

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This Just In: “R.E. Lee, A Biography” Pulitzer Prize Edition 1936...

Mar 14, 2015

General Robert E. Lee was a complex man. A hero to many, a villain to others, it takes a hefty tome to get your arms around the man. Famed journalist and historian Douglas Southall Freeman did such a good job of writing one that he earned the Pulitzer Prize for it — “R. E. Lee, A Biography.” We’re offering this four-volume set, “The Pulitzer Prize Edition,” published by Charles Scribner’s Sons in 1936. This handsome set is bound with gray boards with a gilt profile of Lee on each of the covers. This set aimed at both the serious reader of Civil War history and people who also enjoy displaying the beauty of old books in their homes. Visit the Orion’s Attic eBay store and enter the Books department to find this excellent set....

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This just in: Sparky’s Volksmarch medal collection from Germany and U.S....

Mar 12, 2015

Dr. John “Sparky” Breeskin, make that Lieutenant Colonel Breeskin, was a U.S. Air Force psychologist stationed in Wiesbaden, Germany in the mid-1970s when he was introduced to the German hiking tradition of the Volksmarch — “the people’s walk.” The idea, he learned, was to join folks from small villages and go for organized, non-competitive walks that included food and friendship. Many walks also commemorated important people and events in local, national or even global history. “I joined a walk that weekend and I never looked back,” says Breeskin, a Takoma Park, Maryland, resident whose sentences flow as gently and lyrically as his long white beard. He bears an uncanny resemblance to poet Walt Whitman, a portrait of whom hangs in his dining room. “I started going every weekend. Volksmarching took me all over Germany.”...

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