Saturday, 19 September 2009

Who Started...

...The Christmas Cards Tradition?

Yes I know, I was bemoaning the fact that despite it being so early in the year Christmas was everywhere you look...I've decided to give in gracefully (???) and thought I would have a look at some of the things behind the "Christmas Traditions" that we follow. I found this bit of info on the Christmas lore site (lots of interesting snippets but do be warned - if you venture there it is crammed with advertising links).

"Why We Send Christmas Cards During the Holiday Season
This year while you're preparing all of the Christmas cards that will be going out to friends and family you may take a moment to wonder why you do it and who started it all. After all, it's not like the apostles took it upon themselves to send each other greeting cards to remember the birthday of Jesus. Hey, Hallmark didn't even exist back then! So how did Christmas cards become a part of this Christian holiday? Here's where it all began...

Let's Travel Back in Time
Let's go back in time to 1840s Britain. The first postal deliveries were being sent thanks to the brand new “Penny Post” that had been set up.

Now that the Penny Post enabled people to send Christmas greetings to one another it became customary to do so. However, many people found it tedious and time consuming to hand write all of their Christmas letters. In 1843, the first Christmas card was commissioned.

Christmas Cards Come to America
For about 30 years, Americans had to import their Christmas cards from Britain. It wasn't until 1875 that the first Christmas cards would be printed in the United States.

And the Christmas cards sent back then really didn't mirror today's popular cards at all. The Christmas cards of yesteryear tended to depict flowers and faeries. It wasn't until later years that Christmas cards took on a “holiday theme”.

And the Evolution Continues...
What the Penny Post did for Christmas cards back in the mid 1800s, the Internet is doing today. The way we greet one another at Christmas is changing once again. Thanks to the wider acceptance of “e-cards” all it takes is the click of the mouse to send your friends and family Christmas greetings. Who knows what tomorrow brings..."

So it would seem that we Brits invented the Chrismas card and then the Yanks very kindly sold the idea back to us LOL Whoever had the original idea doesn't really matter to me - it is a tradition that I like and will continue to follow (e-cards are lovely and very clever but they are not for me). I love making my own cards and it is part of the fun to come up with different ideas, shapes, colour long live the good old Crimbo Card................

1 comment:

Eleni Gratsia said...

LOL!!! Isn't it just like the Americans to take an idea and sell it back to you? :)

Love Christmas and christmas cards too ... it's finding the time to make them that I have difficulty with! :) We usually start seeing Christmas stuff in November, will have to monitor this year to see when the first stuff hits the stores! :)