Before social media and photo sharing applications allowed instant sharing and communication, postcards were a popular way for individuals to keep in touch with each other through pictures and short messages. Shortly after their development, they become sought-after and collectible items. Today, 'deltiology,' or collecting postcards, is a widespread hobby. Some people enjoy the sense of nostalgia and treasured memories evoked by the pictures and stories. Others collect old versions for the historical insights these glimpses into the past may provide. Moreover, some simply enjoy the aesthetic value of a collection of rare cards.
Most modern and vintage postcards feature images of monuments, historic buildings, cityscapes, and other notable sights, alongside messages written by the senders. They developed into the familiar, divided back examples over several decades. Originally, during the Pioneer Era, the American Postal Service started issuing postal cards in 1873. At the turn of the 20th century, private companies were allowed to start printing and selling their own versions, but with the required label, 'Private Mailing Card.' Additionally, as the backs of the cards were solely for addresses, both the images and messages graced the fronts. Looking for either feature offers a reliable way to date vintage and antique selections. Soon thereafter, in 1907, began what we know as the Golden Age of postcards, due to their significant increase in popularity. At this time, divided back examples, which constitute the largest selection of collectible postcards, were developed. Individuals could write both their messages and addresses on the backs of the cards, and the featured images would cover the front portions. After various iterations, the modern-day postcards came to be.
Buy postcards from our vast selection that feature old city views or rare cards that showcase bygone periods. Start a new collection with current day images. Purchase postcards by theme, region, or era to complete a collection, or simply find one or more to frame as works of art.