In the “Golden Age” of postcards — globally, from around 1902 through World War I — an extraordinary quantity of postcards were collected and exchanged. About 1905, in the small Dominion of Canada, tens of millions of postcards were created and mailed. With no technology and photography in its infancy, postcards were the ‘social media’ of the times!
That so many survive still is a testament to their value as historical artifacts and pieces of art. Aspects of postal history, social history, early photography and photographers intrigue the collector. From the postcard ‘Golden Age’ to the modern age, postcards have evolved in conjunction with changes in printing, photography methods and social practices. From artist-drawn images to lithographed scenes and the highly prized “real photo postcard” (RPPC), vintage postcards can still be found to satisfy almost any area of interest.
Vintage postcards inspire more research to better understand the view or the message on a century old piece of cardboard. Popular topics include local histories of every town, village and hamlet in Canada, military events such as World War I & II, sports and leisure, domestic life, agriculture, automobiles, aircraft, religion, business and industry, disasters, politics, labour, the North, the opening of Canada’s West, and indigenous life. Any of these topics alone could represent a lifetime of collecting and learning.
At the Toronto Postcard Club, we research Canadian postcard manufacturers and publishers. We offer links to many resources where one can learn about vintage postcards. See the right-hand sidebar titled ‘Information on this Site’. Have a look and begin your journey into the compelling hobby of deltiology.
Why Join the Toronto Postcard Club?
It’s not just a Toronto thing! While we operate from Toronto, we have members from across Canada. TPC members receive our 24-page magazine, Card Talk, three times per year. Card Talk contains many interesting articles related to postcards and the stories they tell. Our members’ only archive has twenty years of this journal available to read in a ‘flip-book’ format. As an example, have a look at CardTalk Winter 2017.
The Toronto Postcard Club is one of 5 in Canada. We hold monthly meetings via ZOOM to explore a variety of historical topics through the lens of vintage postcards. Our membership roster lists members’ collecting interests to facilitate networking among members.
Join the TPC (and/or a postcard club in your area), or go to a postcard show to connect with like-minded postcard collectors. If you’re just starting, or aren’t sure if postcards are your thing, check us out on Facebook or drop us a line and before long you’ll be wondering why you didn’t start collecting vintage postcards long ago!