I made the decision to take all this to another level. I googled ‘A. Edward Sutherland’ to check for any information regarding his personal life during the twenties—particularly if he had been married in 1927. And he had been. To a Louise Brooks. L.B. Bingo! They had been married between 1926 and 1928. And what a celebrity she was! Point of fact, she had been much more famous than her successful husband. I found literally hundreds of articles about her, most in agreement stating she was one of the most recognized actresses of the silent movie era—and also one of the most beautiful. All were in accord that she was one of the most independent, liberated and sensual women of her time. Here are a few photos I found.
“One of the most mysterious and potent figures in the history of the cinema…”
“…the only woman who had the ability to transfigure no matter what film into a masterpiece…”
“Louise is the perfect apparition, the dream woman, the being without whom the cinema would be a poor thing.”
“Those who have seen her can never forget her.”
The stationery was obviously top-end. It had texture and a thickness only found in expensive paper. My knowledge of paper was limited, although Jeanne once took a class in papermaking and would come home with samples she had made from cotton-rag. I do recall her telling me that certain cotton-rag paper can last hundreds of years without much fading or discoloration. But truth be, cotton-rag paper is available today. Therefore, there was no way to place a date on this stationery unless…
I held the letter up to the light and looked for any markings. Down, just below middle, toward the right, was a watermark. The backlight brought the image out like a photo in developer. A bit smeared but clear enough to decipher was the following:
The only White and Wyckoff’s in existence today was in the business of providing “information on 32 million companies” and described as a business services company. Definitely not a stationery company. And I could not find any info regarding when White and Wyckoff’s Exclusive Stationery folded, sold out, or merged with anyone. The stationery—in spite of its fresh, crisp appearance—was certainly from another—much earlier—era.