WISH YOU WERE HERE: The Robert Schramm Collection of Historic Postcards (Part 1)

Writer’s note: This is the first of a short series of Weelunk pictorials from the collection of retired West Liberty State College (now university) Professor Robert (Bob) Schramm.

As a colleague, friend and neighbor, I had the privilege of getting to know Bob Schramm. Bob passed away at his home in West Liberty on June 21, 2014. Within the last few weeks, I have been working with members of the Schramm family to go through Bob’s extensive collections.

The family members have given me permission to make some of the photographs from those collections public. Because he was the official photographer and archivist for West Liberty State College/University, Bob’s photographic collection is extensive. He was also an avid collector of historic postcards.

The following excerpt from Bob’s obituary as published in the Wheeling News-Register gives a good account of some of his activities:

Following his retirement from WLSC, Bob continued his contributions to The Linsly School, co-founding their Archives and Museum, and serving as Archivist and Museum curator.

He authored four pictorial histories: West Liberty State College (2001), The Linsly School (2003), Moundsville (2004) and Wheeling Island (2006). A fifth book, a pictorial history of radio station WWVA, is currently in production. A work of fiction, The Apocryphal Tales of Sherlock Holmes (written under the pen name R. Wolfgang Schramm) was published in 2010. At the time of his passing, he was working on a pictorial history of the town of West Liberty.

One of only 40 Daguerreotypists in the U.S, he hand-built and assembled all of the equipment needed to create Daguerreotypes, a photographic process invented in the mid-1830s by Louis Daguerre. In addition, he was skilled in making platinotypes, chrysotypes, cyanotypes and uranotypes. (SchrammStudio.com)

In 1990, he and his wife Jeanne designed and constructed a women’s history museum “on wheels,” housed inside a refurbished school bus. His exhibits later became the first permanently installed collection in the National Women’s History Museum in Alexandria, Virginia.

The remainder of this document consists of some of the historic postcards from Bob Schramm’s collection. We hope that you enjoy looking at them.

Subscribe to Weelunk
Billy Sunday Tabernacle Postcard — Date Unknown
Oglebay Carriage House Postcard — Date Unknown
Ohio River Ice Jam — Date Unknown
Airplane View of Wheeling — Date Unknown
Linsly — Date Unknown
Thomson Church in Wheeling — Date Unknown
Wheeling Steel Bridge — Date Unknown
West Liberty State College President’s Home and Shaw Hall — Date Unknown
Stamm Hotel in Wheeling — Date Unknown
Steam Barge at Wheeling — 1908
Uneeda Brewing — Date Unknown
Warwood — Date Unknown
Wheeling Flood — 1907
Wheeling High School — 1912
Wheeling Municipal Building — Date Unknown
Market Street in Wheeling — Date Unknown
Wheeling River Front — 1914
Wheeling Steam Boat — 1916
Wheeling Steel Bridge — Date Unknown
Wheeling Train — 1914
WTRF Seaweed Sam — Date Unknown
WWI Troop Ship Coming Home — Date Unknown
Postcard Carried on the Maiden Voyage of the Hindenberg to New York — May 9, 1936 (Front)
Postcard Carried on the Maiden Voyage of the Hindenburg to New York  — May 9 , 1936 (Back). Earl’s note about the Hindenburg Postcard: I examined this document carefully to determine if it was authentic. The postage stamp is real and so are the postmarks. The dates correspond to the dates of the first trip to New York made by the Hindenburg. This postcard was one of a number of postcards that Veedol Motor of Pennsylvania mailed from Hamburg, Germany, to be carried to Veedol dealers in the USA.

To conclude this posting, I would like to thank the members of the Schramm family for allowing me to scan their historic postcard collection and to make some of those scans public. In addition to the postcard collection, the family has allowed me to scan or copy Bob’s historic photographs. That collection includes around 800 items. We will share some of those photographs in future postings.

Earl Nicodemus is retired after 40 years as a professor of Instructional Technology at West Liberty University. He helped to form the West Liberty Historical Society, and he and his family maintained the historic West Liberty Cemetery from 1985 to 2016. In 2016, Earl was named as a West Virginia History Hero. His other interests include gardening and fishing.