“Greetings From…Maine”

Greetings from Maine and Sturbridge Yankee Workshop. Today we feature our new for summer 2012, Vintage State Postcard Pillow, pictured here to the left. We love this pillow not only for its unique design, but for the nostalgia it carries with it as well. Presenting a flanged pillow edge, this fun pillow highlights a screen printed image of your choice of state postcard. The base of the pillow is a black and cream ticking pattern in 100% woven cotton. Added details include the hand cross-stitch surrounding the postcard image and six decorative side buttons along either side. The pillow would make an ideal gift for a loved one who used to live close by and has now moved to another state. Or, show off your travels from a favorite vacation destination within any of the 50 states that will remind you of past road trips across the U.S. with friends and family.

Postcards like the Maine one seen above, were originally in circulation during the late 1930’s and early 1940’s, and were part of what is referred to as the “linen era” of postcards. The linen era was characteristic of postcards printed on textured, thicker paper surfaces. The very first postcard in the United States was showcased at the 1895 World Colombian Exposition in Chicago. And by about 1908, more than 677 million postcards had been mailed. The fascination with postcards was due to the realization that this form of written communication was an envelope-free alternative to heavier letters and was also an inexpensive keepsake from a vacation.

After their debut in the later part of the 19th century, postcards were known as penny postcards as they cost only 1 cent. Legally however, they were called souvenir cards because the government didn’t allow private companies to sell post without their consent. (This ban was lifted in 1901). You might also be surprised to learn that some of these very first souvenir cards during the “pioneer era,” were not permitted to have anything but the address written on the back; until about 1907 when a “divided back” provided space to write both the message and the address. The sending of postcards in America decreased after the end of World War I, but the collecting of old postcards, deltiology, is one of the top three collecting hobbies in the world today. (Stamp and coin collecting take the first two positions).

The final era of postcards and current “photochome era” includes the high color photographs or real photos that we have been familiar with for quite some time. These postcards with a glossy appearance, first went into distribution in 1939. Above you will see 12 other state postcard examples available on SYW’s Vintage State Postcard Pillow. Be sure to click on the links to get a close-up look at the postcard options; remember all 50 states are available. This pillow is a great addition to summer decor, reminding us all of summers gone by and state pride. Proudly Made in the USA, we are happy to offer this pillow at only $49.95 during our ongoing summer sale.


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