As Big As You Think

Each day, KHC features the hot topics and great speakers in the Speakers Bureau catalog. Today’s featured presentation is “The Tall-Tale Postcards of Dad Martin and Pop Conard” by Erika Nelson.

Tall Tale Exaggerated Postcard

Bumper cabbage crop “tall-tale” postcard by William H. “Dad” Martin, 1908.
Image via kansasmemory.org, Kansas Historical Society, copy and reuse restrictions apply.

Kansas—As Big As You Think: We’re talking massive trout, humungous rabbits, and cabbage heads the size of your cousin’s Ford Fiesta.

From the early 1900s through 1940, two early pioneers of trick photography and printing, William H. “Dad” Martin and Frank D. “Pop” Conard, found inspiration in the bugs, crops, and industry of Kansas. In her Speakers Bureau talk, Erika Nelson discusses their carefully crafted “tall-tale” postcards that promoted Kansas as a land where ears of corn grew so large that farmers used logging saws to slice them and monster grasshoppers could stop a train in its tracks.

Erika Nelson

Erika Nelson

Nelson is an independent artist, educator, and director of the World’s Largest Things, Inc.  She rides the range researching roadside attractions and outsider art environments, searching for the odd and unique in her mobile museum, the World’s Largest Collection of the World’s Smallest Versions of the World’s Largest Things.

Bring Erika Nelson’s “The Tall-Tale Postcards of Dad Martin and Pop Conard” or one of the other presentations in the Speakers Bureau catalog to your community for FREE with a Resource Center Support Grant. It’s quick and easy! Visit the Speakers Bureau page to get started or contact Leslie Von Holten, KHC program officer, at leslie(at)kansashumanities.org for more information.