Friday, 29 April 2016

Comic Earlston Railway Postcards

Two railway cartoons feature in the Auld Earlston postcard collection.

 Our Local Express - The Good Old Berwickshire Railway
Acceleration of Trains - the Greenlaw  Corridor makes the journey 
from Greenlaw to Earlston  and back in twenty four hours. 
Postcard franked 1906. 

The Last Train from Earlston 

These are not, however original to Earlston,  but penned by  Fife born artist  Martin  Anderson - you will see his pseudonym signature of Cynicus  at the foot of each card. Many of his railway cartoons were overprinted with different captions and town names, as here.  

Martin Anderson, (1854 –193)  studied  at Glasgow School of Art, set up the St. Mungo's Art Club and exhibited at the Royal Scottish Academy in Edinburgh.    In 1880 he joined  the publisher of  The Dundee Advertiser, The Evening Telegraph, People's Journal, and People's Friend - the first  such staff artist to be employed by any daily newspaper in Britain, for until then daily newspapers were not illustrated.

He turned increasingly to satirical and political cartoons and comic postcard illustrations setting up the "Cynicus Publishing Company".   After initial success, the company was forced to close.  Martin Anderson returned to Edinburgh in 1915, leasing a basement shop in York Place. Nine years later  his Edinburgh shop was destroyed by fire, everything inside it was lost, and he did not have the funds to repair and restock it. 

He retired to Fife to live in increasing poverty.  He died in 1932  and was buried in Tayport Old Churchyard, in an unmarked grave.  

A sad end for such a prolific artist who was a forerunner in  the  field of humourous postcards.  His work is still regularly available in auction houses and online.

Source:  Wikipedia  

If you have any postcards of Earlston, the Auld Earlston Group would love 
to hear from you.  

Your postcards can either be donated or loaned, scanned and returned to you.  

More postcards on the village  can be viewed on our Lost Earlston Facebook page.


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