the purpose of this site.
An Index to My Collection
As a collection for many years going to stores and shops, shows and bidding online, I found it useful to have a portable inventory of my collection. How many times did I purchase an item that I already had? Who knows! This site has been designed to be compatible with my cellphone and has already proven very useful.
A Resource to Myself and Others
I continually forget the details. What were the dates of a port visit? Who was the captain of the ship? What was the class of the ship? I have tried to put the quick reference information on my site as another reference when I am away from my collection. In this process, I have found others use the site as a resource. Great! It is a pleasure as a collector to be able to provide something useful to others.
Looking at a postcard of photograph on a large monitor is sooo much better than looking through a binder of 3-1/2 x 5-1/4 inch cards. The size and the light energy allows you to zoom into the smallest detail. It also allows you to view groups of things or compare things. Now that I am wearing reading glasses, being able to look at things in this manner makes a big difference.
Organizing my Collection
Unlike a binder of images, the website allows me to organize and reference things in a much more efficient manner. A photograph of the USS Connecticut in San Francisco can be listed on the page of the port visit, the photographer, and the page about the Connecticut. Series postcards can be shown on the page of the port they were used and also on a page with all of the other cards of that series.
Building a Website is Fun
The process of putting together a website of my collection allows me to experience my collection. It encourages me to do the research and write it down in a permanent manner. Writing tags and notes on items in my collection never worked and trying to scan and create sheets on my computer was not very interactive.
A Window to the World
Having a website of my collection has allowed me to meet other enthusiast from all over the world. The process has enabled me to find other collector, as crazy as I am, other people who enjoy this part of history, and opportunities from people who have items to add to my collection.
the organization of the website
The Site is Divided into Areas that are Cross-Referenced
As you dig around in the site, you will find it is very big and only a small portion of the items are listed under different areas. The portion of the site dedicated to "World Cruise" presents items in my collection associated with that port visit. Photographs, postcards, invitations, maps, buttons, ribbons, and souvenirs. The portion "Letters Home" presents all of my collections of cards and letter from individuals who wrote home with cards and letters. They are complete collections from throughout the cruise and some of my favorite viewing. "The Fleet" is about the ships. The divisions they were in, their history, items from commissioning, and unique items from their history including photographs, buttons, pins, banners, and postcards. "Series Cards" is a place where I put all of the postcards that were issued in a series for a single point of reference. Something different, "Cruise Itinerary" provides an interactive Google map of the world cruise with links to pages within the website. Under "Related Sections" I have links to photographers, artists, people, and collectibles. This is an area where I have information about early ship cancellations and crossing-the-line.
Constructing and Publishing
Building websites is not work related for me. I have, over the past 20-years built onto this website, and every few years had to upgrade software or rebuild the site as it expanded. This site was started in October 2018 using a WordPress template that cost $45.00. This is completing different from what I used in the past in that all of my site is maintained and changed on the hosting server. As I make a change, it is immediately made to the site. I have no store files on my computer at home. This is nice because I can edit my site from any computer! Yup, there was a learning curve. I purchased a online help service for $85.00 for the first six months that has pulled my keister out of the fire more than once. If you are thing about giving it a try, take a look at the templates that are available online and give one a try, its free. I used Template Monster.
bill the collector
You might thing from viewing this site that this would be my only collection or the only thing I have time to do each day.
I live in Seattle and ride the ferry each day to work in the City. I am twice married with four adult children and four grandchildren, with a fifth on the way! I love biking, traveling, great food at home or in restaurants. This is not my only collection. I have many. The one that claims most of my energies these days is the Russo-Japanese War, particularly the sake cups. I served in the Navy, enlisting at 17 and returning to school under the GI Bill and getting my commission as a Special Operations Officer. I spent 18 years of sea duty on five ships that took me all over the world. I retired some years ago and utilize the postgraduate degree the Navy provided as a means to pay the bills. Each year I try to visit one of the ports of the Cruise, in 2019 I am thinking Malta to see the "Chapel of Bones." My bucketlist of ports is down to three, Albany, Valletta, and Amoy. I hope to start posting some of the photographs from these adventures soon.
What are the Highlights of this Website?
- The collection of Frank Lesher. It is the largest, and best, collection of items from sailor of the cruise.
- The Photographs of Arthur C. Pillsbury. A Yosemite photographer who took a time-out to photograph the fleet.
- The fabric items, including two large tapestries for the cruise made in Japan.
- The collection of shipboard postmarks.
- The pages on the visit to Yokohama.