You know, when i first began working with photos, I certainly didn't know. But RPPC's are real photo postcards
Because people loved to send letters..loads of letters and cards.. and they would develop their photos into postcards and then mail them out to people.
There are some that have several copies..because they would send them to all the relatives. Usually they are the photos that turned out the best..i mean why else would you want to send them out..but sometimes you find some really funny ones..
Lots of people collect these, because they are small. Some collect the ones that are written on. They have a newsy note..and a stamp and a stamp mark...pretty cool, because you get a feel for what the world was like at that time in that town.
Some people collect the ones that are not written on because they are in better condition.
I like the ones that are not used usually, because I am all about condition of the image itself, if it can be used for art and things like this.
Rppcs are classified in many different forms, some are places, these can be quite valuable when you find a rare image. Then of course there are people. I personally love people photo cards. Then there are ones that are from Europe that are color tinted and are very pretty, but a bit more mass produced even though it was all at the turn of the 1900s, (so they are quite old) the postcard collectors really know what is rare and what isn't, I am not up on that..but there are some that really have value.
There are marks on the back, where the stamps were that all have different meanings that show date and era. AZO is one of the most common, but there are many others, and European often do not have marks. But primarily most rppc's tend to be from 1900 thru 1915 with the majority being around 1910s. Some are later, into the 20s but most are earlier.
With everything in collecting..it is all about condition condition condition.. but then it is also about subject matter and rarity.
So when you really get into it, it is the hunt that becomes the most fun!
In photos, I collect images that I love..not so much the name of the photographer, I am all about the image and the condition.
Either way..yes, they are a form of photos, and on cardstock and mostly matte finish although some are glossy.
They measure almost always 3.5x5.5 And look great framed!!
Great place to begin while collecting photos...not too big to store...and soo many varieties of images!!