THE FIRST POSTCARDS
The first postcard was introduced in Austria on 1st October, 1869. Great Britain relaxed its postal regulations and followed suit exactly one year later, allowing postcards to be sent through the mail.
The cards were simply seen as a quick and cheap way of sending non-confidential messages. No thought had been given to the inclusion of pictures. Nevertheless the introduction of the message postcard was an essential precursor to the picture postcard which made its appearance towards the end of the 19th Century.
PICTURE POSTCARDS MAKE THEIR APPEARANCE.
Whereas it is possible to give a precise date for the introduction of the purely message postcard, no such precision can be
|accorded to the introduction of illustrated cards. It is believed that picture cards made their appearance gradually, progressing gradually from small vignette views such as this one shown here of the Terminus Hotel in Nice, to 'half cards' like this French card dated 1899.|
By this time vignette cards with an illustration occupying most of the picture side with only a small space for the message had appeared. But it was not until 1902 that the Post Office again relaxed their regulations to allow for a message to be written on the address side, leaving the whole of the other side available for the picture.