Tag Archives: belgium

A postcard puzzle to ponder

1 Aug

I picked up this postcard in Exeter whilst on holiday, I wouldn’t normally have bothered with it, but there were a couple of things about it that appealed to me, which meant I just had to have it.

Church Street, Steyning (front)

The subject of the card is not particularly rare, but I do have a personal connection with it. Church Street, Steyning is probably best known as the home of Steyning Grammar School where I went to school for several years.

This in itself wouldn’t normally be enough to make me buy it, as I said it is not particularly rare to find a postcard of Church Street and I don’t think this is a particularly good picture either. What really caught my attention was the addressee and message.

Church Street, Steyning (back)

Just in case you couldn’t read the message on the front, here it is again, but the right way round this time.

Church Street, Steyning (message)

This is what intrigued me. A card of Steyning, Sussex was being forwarded by George Coleman of Hove to a gentleman in Belgium, in 1903. Why?

What business was George Coleman in? Why did he have a stamp made with his details on? Does this mean he forwarded a lot of postcards? Was he involved in publishing postcards? Was this being sent as a sample of his work? And who was the gentleman in Belgium? What did he want with a postcard of Steyning?

Perhaps one day I will find some answers. Next time I am at the Brighton History Centre I will do some digging in some local directories and see if I can find an entry for George Coleman, that will at least give me somewhere to start.

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