Margaret Marty

A Valentine for "Victrola'



By Margaret Marty - A Valentine for ‘Victrola’ February 14, 2019 and Honorary Friend of the Phonograph

I have a thing about keepsakes. While it’s been so cold lately, it seemed a good time to sit down with my big ring-binder notebook titled “Keepsakes” and peruse the pages. I found therein a hilarious valentine my father sent to my mother back in the 1920s. Mom’s name was Victoria, and I can remember my dad teasing her by calling her “Victrola,” which was what phonographs were called back then. The victrola was made by the Victor Talking Machine Company of Camden, New Jersey. It was powered by wind-up springs and had a large megaphone-like horn mounted on it. It played only 78 rpm shellac records. It was a valued possession.

On the back of the valentine, Dad had scrawled, “To my Vic-trola, with love from Clarence.” It moved me to tears.

I then went on to read the love letters my late husband and I wrote each other back in the 1950s, and again the tears were blurring my sight. So why do we save all these darn keepsakes that make us cry? Because it would be sacrilegious to throw them away.

Margaret Marty, a writer and poet, Rock Creek, Minnesota. Courtesy of The "Pine City Pioneer"