This hand-colored postcard of the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel in Paris and other vintage snail mail is the best thing about What’s On 2nd in Birmingham, Alabama. Shopkeeper Steve Gilmer began collecting postcards as a boy; he became fascinated by the medium after discovering a few his great aunt had sent from Illinois. In one of the old cards, she wrote about hearing Woodrow Wilson speak. These days, Gilmer estimates that he has more than a quarter of a million postcards in his collection, including more than 20,000 from Birmingham and Jefferson County. The cards for sale in his shop are well-organized—by country, city, even theme (log cabins, presidents, bawdy humor). Well-priced, too. His is a place worth writing home about.
2323 1st Ave N., Birmingham, AL; 205-322-2688.