Buried Treasure

Why yes, that is a stack of Shakespeare! Over lunch today, I needed a bit of an escape – so I headed to the Brattle Book Shop’s outdoor lot, on West Street in Downtown Crossing, to search their shelves for vintage design books. These four unplanned purchases were stacked together, just waiting for me to find them.

When I got them back to my office, I flipped through one and discovered a little treasure tucked amidst the pages.

The stock used for this luggage tag is an impressive weight, and the colors and design are certainly a far cry from those lame, afterthought tags they keep out at modern airline bag check counters worldwide.

A bit of research revealed that Home Lines was an Italian passenger shipping company. Founded in 1948, the company had ships and routes worldwide, and ceased operations when it was acquired by Holland America Lines in 1988. (An aside: given that the books I picked up were published in 1962, it’s quite possible that this tag was serving as a placeholder for Shakespeare before I was born. Neat, right? Right??)

For more history of the Home Lines fleet, start with Wikipedia; for more vintage postcards (above) and images from the company, check out the Homes Lines page here.

Have you ever unwittingly made an exciting discovery, or found treasures in used books you’ve purchased? Any great vintage design trinkets to share?

One thought on “Buried Treasure

  1. Beki says:

    How fun! I hope you enjoy reading your purchases as much as I enjoy my Jane Austen collection. Right now I am in the midst of \Emma\ and am hoping it is as grand a story as her \Pride and Prejudice\ which is by far my favorite. I know, I’m a sucker for a good romance. Enjoy.

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