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Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Antique Color Advertising "Trade Cards"

About 150 years ago, there was not too much in the way of bright colors in most humble people's lives. Their clothes tended to be drab, they had few decorations, and they could not afford even the smallest, most rudimentary painting. They ate on plain crockery or wooden planks, and did not have the colorful china the wealthier citizens possessed. Businesses soon realized there was a real hunger for color among these households, and invented not only colorful advertising "bills" that would be glued throughout towns, but later small lithographed "trade cards" featuring the name of their product accompanied by pretty or fanciful images. Both adults and children prized and treasured these cards, which were most often free or in later days, included in a package of the goods sold.

Soon not only the poor, but the middle and upper classes wanted these trade cards. In fact, these cards were so desirable that the best room in the home, the "parlor," featured albums of these cards. For those without a spare room and without the funds for an album, they might be stored in a box or kept in a tin. Baby boomers such as myself remember practically wearing out the Sears Wishbook; so too the children and adults of the late 1800s perused, re-perused, and perused again these cards. Mothers and children first latched onto the cards; when racy or sports-themed cards began to be produced as well, men began saving them, too.

It all waned after the advent of fancy magazines in color, in the early 1900s. But many of these cards survive, having once been treasured possessions.

Here we have a few "autumn-themed" Victorian trade card images to peruse yourself or even print. They would look cute in an old-fashioned display tucked in a corner or perhaps a dough bowl. 

REMEMBER, click the link to save the images, or you won't get the full-sized image. I store the full-sized ones via Google. The link is safe and goes to Google Drive or Google Photos. I'm trying to find a way around that, but so far, no luck.

Click HERE ON THIS LINK to save!

free printable autumn victorian trade cards


    Kind regards,

    Olde Dame Holly Rose

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