A man is sending postcards from the early 1900s back to their original destination in the hope of bringing “joy” at a time of “isolation”.
The cards, bought from antique shops and other sources, are posted with a note saying “a little piece of history” is coming home.
Ben Curran, a mental health worker from Norwich, said he aimed to “ignite people’s curiosity”.
So far he has sent 35 cards back to the address to which they were first sent.
“These old postcards are just languishing in shops and have little monetary value, but they were meaningful when first sent and received, and I want to recreate that meaning,” said Mr Curran, who calls his project Postcards from Time.
“People are interested in the history of their homes, the people who lived there; and maybe this will encourage them to think and talk about these things.”
Some of the cards are greetings from holiday destinations, while others contain personal messages, including one from a soldier shortly after the end of World War One.
Writing to his daughter Nellie, in Shrewsbury, he scolds her for not writing while he is billeted overseas.
On another postcard sent to London in 1918, a father tells his daughter he has finished making a basket for her, but cannot find the right material to line it, requesting she send him a piece of silk “18 inches by 12 inches”.
The cards are sent out with a message saying they are “returning this little piece of history to the place where it belongs” in the hope it “brings joy” and “ignites curiosity”.
The idea was based on the concept of “random acts of kindness”, said Mr Curran.
So far only one recipient has responded online.
“That was really nice, and they enjoyed receiving it, but I’m not worried about people replying to me, as that’s not the point,” said Mr Curran.
“I like the quirkiness of it and also the idea that someone might take pleasure in it, particularly given there is a lot of isolation in this world and something like this might be a small catalyst for change.”
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