Seven Different Types of Postcards


Postcards have been one of the oldest methods of communication. In the mid 1800s, people were in search of a way to mail short messages without the hassle of envelopes. Then, the postcard was introduced. Postcards were very cheap, easy to mail and also very eye-catching with various pictures printed on them. Postcards have a long history varying from different types over the years. Here are some of them.

1. Pioneer Era

This was the time period before 1898. These pioneer cards are believed to have begun with the sale of colorful postcards at the Columbian Exposition in Chicago on May 1, 1893. Illustrations of buildings and the view of the exposition were on them. These postcards had undivided backs with printed lines to write only the name and address of the addressee. The government was the only authorized organization to print and name them as ‘postcards’. Private companies had to name theirs as ‘souvenir cards’.

2. Private Mailing Card Era

On May 19th, 1898 private companies were given permission to print their own postcards and name them as ‘Private Mailing Cards’ commonly known as PMCs. These postcards had undivided backs and had real photos printed on them. This was the era when postcard printing became popular as people were fond of the real photos on postcards.

3. Undivided Back Era

This was the time when private postcard printers in Melbourne were permitted to name their cards as ‘postcards’. During this time, Kodak introduced a marvelous camera. It was a folding pocket camera with which you take a black and white photograph of anything and it would instantly be printed on a paper with postcard backs. At the end of this era, collecting picture postcards was the most common hobby among people.

4. Divided Back Era

The government finally granted permission to divide the back of the picture postcard so that on the right side you should write the name and address of the addressee and on the left you can write any intended message. This is known as the golden age of postcards where postcard printing and collecting became an addiction. However, postcards were replaced by the telephone bringing this era to an end. Get to know where you can get quality and fast printing services right here

5. White Border Era

With high quality European publishers closing down, US and England had to print low quality postcards. They left a white border around the postcard to save ink, bringing it the name ‘White Border Postcards’. This caused a major disinterest among the public. People often bought postcards to get a more realistic experience of pictures but with the introduction of movies, they no longer bought postcards.

6. Linen Era

Postcard publishers found linen to be a great surface to print on. This texture gave people a ‘feel’ of reality in pictures. Also, it was found that bright dyes could be used to colour images giving them more life. The low cost and ease of producing them made linen postcards very popular.

7. Photochrome Era

These postcards are used till present. Photochrome postcards were very popular since it had real photos in colour, replacing black and white and linen postcards. They were easy to produce and also were in high quality.

Postcards have come a long way since the 19th century. Though they have been replaced by emails and text messages, their uniqueness can never be replaced.