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Vintage Christmas Advertising Trade Cards

Updated on September 3, 2016

Advertising for specific products geared towards Christmas has a pretty short history. In the United States, it wasn't until well after the Civil War, that advertising using a Christmas theme became somewhat common.

Trading Cards were sort of like a business card, they were bigger and brighter than a business card but they advertised the business. Trading doesn't refer to people trading the cards, like baseball cards, which people did, but it referred to the Trade that was being advertised in the card.

The Trade cards were printed on expensive, heavy paper and many have lasted into this century, where there is an active market for the cards.

Below are my images of some Christmas Trade cards and some Christmas ads. These older items are in the public domain, so feel free to download them for your website or craft projects.

Store Trade Cards

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Product Cards

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Business Cards

Woolson's Spice and Lion Coffee

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Woolson Spice company, which owns Lion Coffee, were one of the first companies to distribute trade cards. They were offered with the products they sold, including a new trade card in each pound of Lion Coffee sold.

The company changed the trade cards at least 4 times a years so they are many different cards around and these are just a small sample. You can find the cards for sale for just a few dollars on Ebay.


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