About the Collection
Originally a native of Raleigh, North Carolina, Bettie La Barbe spent several years (approximately 1904 – 1923) in Charleston as a teacher and the directress of Kelly’s Kindergarten at Saint Andrews Episcopal Church (located at King and Poinsette Streets). She retired to Asheville, North Carolina and remained an active member in her community until her death in 1955. The collection consists of just over three hundred Victoriana-era postcards collected by Miss La Barbe between the years 1903 – 1935. The collection’s provenance in the Charleston Archive at CCPL is unknown, but it is believed that it was originally donated to the Charleston Free Library. The cards feature a wide variety of subjects including people, animals, and holidays. While the vast majority of the images are not specifically related to Lowcountry or South Carolina, they represent a broad range of Victorian commercial art.