|Oregon Historical Society, OrHi 101742|
Yes, the postcard is a real photograph of the main street of Stanford, and that is a real photograph of a streetcar--but the streetcar photo has been carefully cut and pasted onto the street scene. The penciled scrawl says, "Not yet but soon."This is a booster postcard, promoting the future metropolis of Stanford, so up-to-the-minute that it has streetcars. In 1910 the growing Stanford district had a population of 1,176; but prosperity did not continue, and the town's population today is less than 800. It never had a streetcar.
There was a brief period from about 1905 to 1920 when streetcars represented the acme of metropolitanism, and postcards were the modern way to send a quick note--they were the Tweets of their day. If your town lacked a streetcar, you could still hope one might arrive, or you could admit to living in a small place and make a joke of it. In any case, it pays to advertise.