Books and Vintage Merchandise Store

Beautiful Antique Images For Your Home or Personal Use

Exquisite pictures taken from vintage postcards, most more than 100 years old, and almost all now available for the first time.

These projects represent decades of research and unique access to unexplored archives of historical images. 

Beautiful Antique Postcards For Your Personal Use

Exquisite pictures taken from vintage postcards, most more than 100 years old, and almost all now available for the first time.

These projects represent decades of research and unique access to unexplored archives of historical images. 

Greg Gatenby Website Postcard Pictures

About My Books & Vintage Merchandise Store

My cultural history of postcards uniquely allows you to see how people looked and behaved a century and more ago. In some ways the manner in which they moved or interacted has changed a lot. Yet, in other ways, our forebears acted much as we do today. My most recent major work, Authorized Images, unveils for the first time, how acclaimed writers of the Victorian and Edwardian Ages especially revered literary authors.

Picture postcards in the gold old days were prevalent not only at tourist spots but were commonplace wherever people tended to meet.  Starting in the 1890s and through to the 1950s, billions of postcards were sold each year across the planet. Their popularity was due in part to the fact that most developed nations used to boast of having up to eight mail deliveries a day to homes and businesses, meaning that postcards were often used simply to send simple messages to friends across town—postcards, in effect, were the text messaging of their time.

The unique and exciting information conveyed by the photos and paintings on vintage postcards has rarely been examined by academic scholars. Now, though, thanks to Authorized Images, the spectacular volume and elegance afforded to depictions of famed literary figures can be seen in all their glory.

Authorized Images: Omnibus Edition: 5 Volumes
Authorized Images: Famous Authors Seen Through Antique and Vintage Postcards: Omnibus Edition- 5 Volumes

As an author of several books of cultural history (including pioneering anthologies about whales and dolphins), I was always on the hunt for unusual or rare vintage illustrations. 

In the 1990s I began to collect amazing postcards with spectacular images showing details, skill, unique perspectives, all blessed with a superb aesthetic sense it is impossible to find today. 

Over the past quarter-century I amassed one of the world’s largest collections of such venerable postcards—and now you can share in the pleasure of applying these images to a wide variety of your own goods.

These include easily affordable items: tote bags, coffee mugs, jewelry, window curtains, posters, greeting cards, T-shirts, jigsaw puzzles—with other delights in a similar vein soon to come.

A selection of Postcards available for our Merchandise
A selection of Postcards available on our Merchandise

Recent E-books

My eBooks represent a breakthrough allowing the public to discover at first hand—and in unprecdented quantity–this wealth of knowledge about our social and cultural past. Be prepared to be amazed!

These are the books currently available for purchase. 

Feel free to immerse yourself in the words, explore new horizons, and enrich your life one page at a time. Start your reading adventure today!

Authorized Images: Famous Authors Seen Through Antique and Vintage Postcards

Omnibus Edition with 5 Volumes + Spotlight Releases
Pictures from Authorized Images Book by Greg Gatenby

Volume 1 is a comprehensive Introduction to Antique Postcards and the history of their birth and evolution. Volumes 2 to 5 are comprised of detailed examinations of how 70 legendary authors were treated by postcard publishers. The authors range in age from Homer to Hemingway, such as:

Dante Alighieri, Geoffrey Chaucer, Ludovico Ariosto, Miguel de Cervantes, William Shakespeare, Molière, Johann von Goethe, Jane Austen, James Fenimore Cooper, Edgar Allan Poe, George Eliot, Jean de La Fontaine, Daniel Defoe, Pierre Beaumarchais, Robert Burns, Friedrich Schiller, Lord Byron, William Cullen Bryant , Honoré de Balzac, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Charles Dickens, Charles Baudelaire, Leo Tolstoy, Homer, John Milton, Sir Walter Scott, John Keats, Alexandre Dumas, père, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Hans Christian Andersen Elizabeth Barrett-Browning and Robert Browning Charlotte Brontë, Emily Dickinson, Louisa May Alcott, Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson, Mark Twain, Sholom Aleichem, Rudyard Kipling, Colette, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Oren Arnold and others.

Book of the Century (1814-1918)

Prussia Inches towards German Unification and Subsequently Evolves as a World Power
Pics from The Book of the Century by Greg Gatenby

Differing from almost all previous accounts of the 1914-1918 conflict, this book traces the origins of the Great War back two millennia 1,900 years to the epic battles between the Caesars of the Roman Empire and the Teutonic peoples of the region then known as Germania.
Subsequently, Book of the Century delves more deeply into the personalities and events To “that unspooled after Napoleon’s defeat at the Battle of Waterloo through to the assassination of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand.

Young Greg Gatenby

Support Me

               I am an independent scholar of cultural history—not a tech billionaire or a tenured professor. This means that almost all the spare cash I have has been spent on buying old postcards to illustrate my surveys of how authors were perceived in the Victorian and Edwardian Ages, and how libraries were celebrated with a pride hardly imaginable today. 

Book in the pipeline include my history of how libraries around the word (most built during the Victorian and Edwardian eras) were depicted via what we now call vintage postcards. Another work on which I have been toiling for years is my literary memoirs. For nearly 30 years, I was the Artistic Director of the literary readings program at an arts centre in Toronto, a period in which I met more eminent creative writers than anyone on the planet. My descriptions of these encounters will focus on the happy, sad, and always poignant behind-the-scenes anecdotes which experience has taught me the public craves to learn. But by far the biggest project yet to come is my unique perspective primarily on the approximately one hundred years leading to (and including) World War One, a work illustrated with thousands of extraordinary images many issued contemporaneously with the events described, and the vast majority of which have never been seen before by book readers.

Alas, I don’t have the funds to finish these projects as designers, mapmakers, and publicists don’t work for free. Your donations will help me bring these books to fruition. Doners will receive unique perks described elsewhere on this site.



British novelist Ian McEwan said
“I think he changed the nature of readings in North America and in Britain. Back in the ’70s it was always this incredibly solemn, churchy feel to a reading. Now they’re much more kind of relaxed and pleasant and there’s more of a level interchange between writers and readers. Harbourfront was the only place you came where there was a bit of pizzazz, sophistication, a sense that a reading was not a church group, more like a jazz club.”


Margaret Atwood once stated,
“Greg set the model for all the other festivals.”


Visit Our Vintage Store

We have lots of merchandise available (at very affordable prices) on which you can have printed exquisite literary and other vintage images (with many more images arriving in upcoming months) on the Website as of now. Our Store gets new products every month. Feel free to Subscribe to our monthly Newsletter to get updates. 

Our Best selling products are Greetings Cards, T-shirts, Tote Bags, Coffee mugs & Canvases.

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