Christmas Card 1.0 – The Story of the First Christmas Card

Xmas Photo

Christmas Card 1.0

Ever wonder who sent the first Christmas Card…and why?  Like many innovations, the Christmas Card was the result of an earlier innovation that created a new problem:  the 1840 introduction of the penny post in England (which significantly reduced the cost of postage and thereby created an avalanche of letter writing) ….and Victorian notions of propriety (that all letters be answered personally and promptly).

A British nobleman of the time, Sir Henry Cole,  (who today would deemed be an  “A” Lister)  found himself deluged at Christmas with so many letters bearing holiday greetings that he could not possibly answer them all.    This article in the Smithsonian relates his unique response to his quandary:  the first Christmas Card.   (I wonder, would there be a Hallmark Corporation today without Sir Henry?)