• Valentine greetings first appeared in the 15th Century.

• The oldest valentine still in existence today was a poem written in 1415.

• By the 17th century the tradition of exchanging cards or letters began with people in Great Britain and eventually caught on in the United States.

• Before printed cards, it was quite common for friends & loved ones of all social classes to exchange small tokens of affection or hand written notes.

• In 1840, Esther A. Howland, known as “The Mother of the Valentine,” began selling the 1st mass produced valentines in the United States. These beautiful valentines were elaborate creations of ribbons and real lace with colorful pictures know as “scrap.”

• Soon after Esther A. Howland’s valentines were mass produced, a major consumer holiday had emerged.

• Today, Valentine’s Day is one of America’s most popular holidays with more than 62% of the population sending greeting cards each year.

• According to the Greeting Card Association, it is estimated that 1 billion Valentine’s Day cards are sent each year. That’s more than any other holiday except for Christmas.

• Chocolates & flowers are considered some of the most popular forms of valentines to exchange. More than 35 million boxes of heart-shaped chocolates are sold and more than 250 million roses are produced for the holiday in a typical year.

• Today, jewelry has become a very popular form of valentine. Nearly 20% of Americans spend roughly $4 billion on jewelry annually for Valentine’s Day.


by: Kelly Gillow at Country Home Learning & Art Center