Easter Cards

The history of modern greeting cards began in 1843 in England with the design of the first Christmas card. Easter cards were introduced somewhat later, but by 1887 Omahans had a wide variety of “these pretty souvenirs of the season” from which to choose. The Omaha Daily Bee on March 25, 1887, described the Easter cards then available in Omaha.

The Bee said: “The designs for Easter cards this year are more unique and elaborate than ever before. The cost of these beautiful tokens representative of purity, and hope, is about as usual, ranging from 20 cents to $3.50. Some of the designs are beautiful, all are expensive.

“One particularly novel and neat favor, represents a large water lily, fully blown, the petals and stamen being of satin. The stamen is yellow, the inside of the petal white and the outside dark green. The picture of a pretty child lies in the center of the flower. The leading design is a golden rayed cross with an infant’s head in the center, in an aureole, its body sweeping away to one side. On the margin are golden darts with golden doves on the corners. A satin card, with an ostrich plume fringe, stands in a bronze easel. The main feature is three cherubs or choristers and the subscription, ‘Let us sing with joy at Easter.’ A marbleized satin cross with a beautiful infant loaded down with flowers, the arms of the cross illuminated with golden vines and leaves excites admiration.

“Booklets are an Easter novelty. They are leaves held together and contain appropriate verses and illustrations. Some of the cards are fastened on a base of tinted etching paper with silken knots and are very bright looking. Cross illuminated bookmarks with silken fringe and the Easter eggs pictured thereon are plentiful and popular. One of the prettiest has a flock of doves flying earthward, while in the background and dim distance are the three dark crosses pictured against the ruddy sky in the east. Mountains toss about, while in the foreground bright flowers and grasses look natural enough to almost suggest the soft breezes that move them on Easter morn. On this card is the inscription, ‘The Lord is risen to day.’ A cross buried nearly in a white plush base, with lilies and various flowers intermingled, is seen.

“Also a beautiful stuffed marbleized satin crescent with the concave side decorated with bright-lined lilacs and blue bells and crosses formed of pine needles and wild roses and hundreds of other chaste and elegant designs, are to be found in the stores of Omaha, from which a selection of favors may be made. The trade in prayer books and hymnals is on the increase, and dealers say it will continue until after Easter Sunday.”

Easter (along with Christmas, Valentine’s Day, and Mother’s Day) has long been a popular holiday for sending greeting cards.

Become a Member!

Our members make history happen.

Join Now

Other Publications

The Bachelors’ Protective Union of Kearney

When the Bachelors' Protective Union gave a gala reception for two of its newly married, former members and their brides in March of 1890, the social club for young, ...

U.S. Weather Bureau in 1890s Nebraska

The U.S. Weather Bureau was established by an act of Congress on October 1, 1890. It took over the weather service that had been established in the office of the Chief ...

Canning the Way to Victory

During American participation in World War I the U.S. Food Administration, under the direction of Herbert Hoover, launched a massive campaign to persuade Americans to ...

The Shoemaker’s Ashes

"Edward Kuehl, one of the most peculiar characters that ever lived in Omaha, or anywhere else, was found dead in his bed last night in the back room of his place of ...

Crazy Horse Surrender Ledger Foreward

Red Dog, an Oglala Lakota who lived at the Red Cloud Agency, Nebraska, 1876-77 (Nebraska State Historical Society   In the summer of 1876, following the ...

Darryl F. Zanuck

Darryl F. Zanuck Darryl F. Zanuck (1902-1979), a native Nebraskan, produced some of Hollywood's most important and controversial films. He helped found 20th Century Fox ...

The Burlington’s Profitable Pork Special

Nebraska railroads were much concerned with developing an adequate economy in the areas they served. The Burlington, for example, had a long history of caring for the ...

Bungalow Filling Stations

After the giant Standard Oil Company was broken into thirty-four separate companies in 1911, the newly independent Standard Oil of Nebraska dominated the state's market ...

The Bull Fight

This is the perfect time of year for a visit to the old fishin' hole. But a group of fisherfolk from Plainview discovered that this bucolic pastime sometimes has ...

Buffalo Soldiers West

African-American soldiers on the western frontier are the focus of an exhibit at the Nebraska History Museum in Lincoln. Buffalo Soldiers West, on loan from the Colorado ...

Protection for Buffalo

The extermination of the buffalo on the Plains occurred largely between 1870 and 1885. The Nebraska State Journal of Lincoln on February 1, 1874, editorialized in vain ...

Buffalo Hunting

In late October 1877 young Rolf Johnson and three friends left their homes in Phelps County, Nebraska, for a buffalo hunt in northeastern Colorado. The hunt was not very ...
About History Nebraska
History Nebraska was founded in 1878 as the Nebraska State Historical Society by citizens who recognized Nebraska was going through great changes and they sought to record the stories of both indigenous and immigrant peoples. It was designated a state institution and began receiving funds from the legislature in 1883. Legislation in 1994 changed History Nebraska from a state institution to a state agency. The division is headed by Interim Director and CEO Jill Dolberg. They are assisted by an administrative staff responsible for financial and personnel functions, museum store services, security, and facilities maintenance for History Nebraska.
Explore Nebraska
Discover the real places and people of our past at these History Nebraska sites.

Upcoming Events

View our new and upcoming events to see how you can get involved.

Become a Member

The work we do to discover, preserve, and share Nebraska's history wouldn't be possible without the support of History Nebraska members.

History Nebraska Education

Learn more about the educational programs provided at our museums, sites, and online.

History Nebraska Programs

Learn more about the programs associated with History Nebraska.

Latest Hall of Fame Inductee

The Nebraska Hall of Fame was established in 1961 to officially recognize prominent Nebraskans.

Listen to our Podcast

Listen to the articles and authors published in the Nebraska History Magazine with our new Nebraska History Podcast!

Nebraska Collections

History Nebraska's mission is to collect, preserve, and open our shared history to all Nebraskans.

Our YouTube Video Collection

Get a closer look at Nebraska's history through your own eyes, with our extensive video collections.

Additional Research Resources

History Nebraska Research and Reference Services help connect you to the material we collect and preserve.

Support History Nebraska
Make a cash donation to help us acquire, preserve, and interpret Nebraska’s history. Gifts to History Nebraska help leave a legacy and may help your taxes, too! Support the work of History Nebraska by donating to the History Nebraska Foundation today.

Volunteers are the heroes of History Nebraska. So much history, so little time! Your work helps us share access to Nebraska’s stories at our museums and sites, the reference room, and online.