Post Card – Restricted Use [039]

The photo side of this early 1900 postcard (Figure 1) shows a person walking through the rock pillars at the Gate to the Giant’s Causeway. This geological formation in the north-east of Northern Ireland is where large hexagonal pillars of igneous rock stretch into the ocan towards Scotland. In folk tales, this was built by the giant Finn MacCool to visit his girlfriend in Scotland. Today we know this was caused by the rapid cooling of the lava.

The reverse of the card (Figure 2) shows that it is a divided back postcard published by Lawrence of Dublin. An insert tells us that it was printed in Germany, and the postage block calls for ½d for Ireland or 1d for foreign. It also bears the warning “This card may be used for Ireland and foreign communication except to the United States, Japan, and Spain.”

The restricted use was that the United States and others did not accept a reduced rate for cards with a message on the address side. This places the card in the period after 1902 when England legalized use, but before March 1907 when the US adopted use of divided back cards