One of our coworkers recently shared with us an interesting blog post from Mental Floss. As you can probably tell, we’ve been thinking about Christmas cards for many months now. So, today I thought we’d take a step back at look at how the tradition of sending a Christmas card first started.
According to the Mental Floss post, the first commercial Christmas card was sent by London’s Sir Henry Cole in 1843. Sir Cole asked his friend, John Callcott Horsley, to paint a card with an image and a brief greeting. The card, which featured the greeting “A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to You” replaced the individual Christmas greetings that Sir Cole and others regularly send to friends and family during the holidays, and that was the beginning of a long-standing tradition.
By 1875 mass-printed cards had almost completely replaced hand-written greetings in both Europe and the United States, and over 2 billion Christmas cards are currently sent each year!