Rumsey & Co. Ltd. P.E.I. Cards


Lobster Hatchery 25318
Lobster Hatchery, Charlottetown, P.E.I.  Rumsey & Co. Ltd. card #25318

One of the national companies which published P.E.I. cards as part of their offerings was Rumsey & Co. of Toronto. This firm had grown out of a stationery business and at the beginning of the postcard boom began to focus on the new fad. Unlike many other companies which left the postcard field before the beginning of the Great War Rumsey & Co. continued in operation through the Depression and was still in business in the 1950s.

Queen Street, Charlottetown P.E.I. MHF
One of the typical monotone Rumsey cards, unknown number

During the period it published thousands of different cards and in its later years was especially active in the production of real photo postcards, many of which were in small press runs and are increasingly scarce and attractive to collectors. Public collections such as the Peel Prairie Provinces Collection and the Toronto Public Library Collection show a large number of monotone cards  but the majority of the Prince Edward Island cards from the early period  appear to be coloured.

Prince of Wales back
Typical Rumsey card back

There is little to suggest a consistent style in the Rumsey cards. They have conventional images, often identical to those of other publishers. Many have the title centred at the top of the card printed in red ink and in block letters. Card backs for the non-RPPC cards are slight variations on a standard design. Most have the card number in the stamp box but it has also been seen on the bottom of the card. Real Photo Postcard backs are standard with the name of the firm appearing either on the left side or the top of the card.  With no complete catalogue of the cards it is difficult to know how many P.E.I. images appear on Rumsey Cards. Most of the cards carry a serial number, usually printed in the stamp box which can make it difficult to determine if the card has been postaly-used.  The P.E.I. cards seem to be in several series  and if these series are numbered in sequence there could be as many as fifty cards however only about half that number have been located.

More information about the history of Rumsey and Co. can be found on the Toronto Postcard Club site 

As with other listings of Prince Edward Island postcards on this blog the images are drawn from my own collection, public collections such as that of the Robertson Library at the University of Prince Edward Island (accessed here), and from on-line postings of private collectors. For several images I am indebted to Phil Culhane who has posted his images of P.E.I. cards here

Click below to access to pictoral catalogue of Rumsey P.E.I. cards. This is in PDF format and make take some time to load. A PDF viewer program such as Adobe may be required.

Rumsey December 2017


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