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Compiled by Todd Ellison, Certified Archivist (last revised 8/7/2006)Although the world's first picture postcards date from the 1860s to the mid-1870s, most of the earliest American picture postcards extant today are those that were sold at the World Columbian Exposition in Chicago, Illinois, starting on May 1, 1893. At this time, a dozen or more American printers began to take postcards seriously.These were illustrations on government-printed postal cards and on privately printed souvenir cards. Congress on May 19, 1898 granted private printers permission to print and sell cards that bore the inscription Private Mailing Card. Still, no message was permitted on the address side. postal regulations on December 24, 1901 stipulated that the words Post Card should be printed at the top of the address side of privately printed cards.By 1960s, the standard size of cards had grown to 4 x 6 inches.Photochromes are not real photos but rather, printed cards done by a photochrome process.Postcards that are actual photographic replications were first produced around 1900.They may or may not have a white border, or a divided back, or other features of postcards, depending on the paper the photographer used.Mike Roberts pioneered his WESCO cards soon after World War II.Three-dimensional postcards also appeared in this era.
Covington, in Postcard Collector, July 1986, pages 26-28.
Curt Teich (March 1877 – 1974) was a printer who produced popular color postcards, primarily of scenes from American life.
The Teich Company was the world's largest printer of view and advertising postcards.
Click here for links for dating rea Postcards with a divided back were permitted in the U. Many millions of cards were published in this era -- it was the golden age of postcards.
Up to this point, most postcards were printed in Germany, which was far ahead of the United States in the use of lithographic processes.
Contrary to their descriptive name, linen postcards were not made out of linen, which is derived from flax, but they did have a high rag content, which means the paper contained a certain amount of cotton fiber.