Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 2/11/2015 (543 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Stan Milosevic is sending the city postcards from the past.
Milosevic is the author of Wish You Were Here: Hand-Tinted Postcards from Winnipeg’s Halcyon Days. Released by Great Plains Publications, the book was officially launched on Oct. 20 at McNally Robinson Booksellers.
Milosevic, 50, a resident of The Maples, said his postcard collection started as an inheritance.
"About eight years ago a good friend of mine died. He was a historian. He travelled a lot and he left me a box of postcards from his travels around the world and mixed in with those were about 15 old Winnipeg cards," Milosevic said.
"I looked at them and said ‘These are beautiful.’ They are hand-tinted and they show a different time."
The postcards in Wish You Were Here display Winnipeg at the turn of the 20th century.
Milosevic, a photographer who operates the website www.manitobaphotos.com, said many of the postcards in his collection were sourced from outside the city limits.
"They’re tough to find. I find most of my postcards when I go down to Grand Forks and Fargo, because that’s where all the postcards go, out of town," he said.
Milosevic said postcards from Winnipeg’s past appeal to him because of their beauty, their historical context and the work and care put into each picture.
"These were originally black-and-white photos, so all of these were hand-tinted," Milosevic said.
"Every postcard had to go through somebody’s hands, usually women, poorly paid."
Milosevic, who grew up in the North End, said his fascination with local history started as a boy, when he and his buddies would spend their allowances on the arcades downtown.
"I caught some interest in the buildings around me, the history behind them. Some of them are very pretty, and I liked them," Milosevic said.
Milosevic said Wish You Were Here is just a sample of his postcard collection and that he has enough for another edition. He said he’d like to do a before and after book with postcards from the past alongside present pictures.
In addition to postcards, Milosevic also collects Winnipeg and Manitoba history books, travel brochures, and streetcar tickets.
Milosevic possesses some very uniquely Winnipeg items, like music and lyrics for Winnipeg’s "official song", 1925’s All Trails Lead to Winnipeg: Where the East and West Begin. He also has special buttons that businessmen visiting the city would wear to obtain free parking and discounts across the city.
Milosevic’s obsession with local history poses the question, "Do you wish you were there?"
"I’m glad I am where I am, but I’d love to go back and visit," Milosevic said.
"I could ride a streetcar with one of these tickets, sing this song at Portage and Main and have one of these (buttons) so I can get a free meal everywhere."