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Chrome Christmas Postcards: Part 3—Advertising

Postcards with a Christmas theme have been used to advertise a variety of businesses and products. Some of these were meant to be free handouts to customers, and some were meant to be used mainly as direct mail advertising.

CHRISTMAS STORES

Some of the easiest to find Christmas advertising postcards are the ones advertising stores that sell Christmas decorations. Most of the stores seem to be out of business.

Bronner's in Frankenmuth, Michigan is still in business and has has a large year 'round display of Christmas decorations. They attract many visitors and have published many postcards over the years. This is one of the older ones.


Medallion's World of Christmas in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida was described as "A Most Unusual Christmas Store" with imported decor from around the world and open year round. This postcard was sent by a "Grandma" in 1972.


S. Claus stores in San Francisco and Napa Valey, California were open year round with a large selection of ornaments and other Christmas delights. This postcard was mailed to a "Grandma" in 1989.


Rogers Christmas House Village in Brooksville, Florida was a year round Christmas store with five houses. It closed in 2010. This postcard was mailed in 1986.


OTHER STORES

Other types of stores have also issued postcards showing off their Christmas decorations.

R. H. Stearns of Boston decorated the outside of the store with lights in the shape of a Christmas tree. This store closed in 1978.


Woodward & Lothrop advertised itself as "The Christmas Store" on a postcard showing their interior decorated for the holidays. This postcard was mailed in 1958.


Several department stores showed off their Christmas trees on postcards. Sterling Linder Davis of Cleveland issued several different postcards of their annual Christmas trees. This one is circa 1956. It was said to be America's tallest indoor tree at over 60 feet tall. The tree was decorated with 60 puunds of icicles, 1,000 yards of tinsel, and 1,500 ornaments.


Breuner's was a California home furnishings store founded in Sacramento in 1856. They issued a number of postcards showing their annual window displays. This display was their 20th old-fashioned musical display, titled "Christmas Family Gathering Out Our Way." It was their 99th year of saying Merry Christmas.


Southdale Shopping Center in Edina, Minnesota was opened in 1956 and is the oldest fully enclosed, climate-controlled mall in the United States. This early 1960s view shows the mall decorated for Christmas.


The Gift Box store in Bend, Oregon appears to be an ordinary gift shop that promoted Christmas shopping with a visit from Santa and his reindeer. (Reindeer furnished by Reindeer Ranch of Redmond, Oregon).


TOURIST ATTRACTIONS

Some of the Christmas stores have functioned as tourist attractions, and there have been many year round Santa Lands and Villages.


Koziar's Christmas Village is a seasonal tourist attraction that is primarily a display. It traces its history back to 1948 when William M. Koziar began decorating his house and farm for Christmas. Postcards have advertised it as the "Greatest Christmas Display in the U.S.A."


RESTAURANTS

Santa Claus has been shown visiting restaurants. He is in the midst of indoor Christmas decorations at Country Gardens in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and The Rustic Manor in Gurnee, Illinois (below).


He was pictured outdoors with his reindeer at the Jax Cafe in Minneapolis, Minnesota.


CHRISTMAS PRODUCTS

Mold-Craft of Port Washington, Wisconsin advertised life-size figures molded of hard rubber compound for outdoor Christmas displays. This was the Dickens Group of Old-time Carolers.


In the 1950s and 1960s postcards were sent out to remind customers to order personalized Christmas cards. These often showed a group of designs on one postcard like this one showing cards from the 1968 Newbury Guild albums.


Bolind of Boulder, Colorado sent a postcard to businesses in 1963 offering Christmas file displays for resale. According to the information on the postcard, Bolind had "America's Largest Selection of Personalized Labels and Kits."


A 1975 limited edition Christmas plate was an "exclusive" from the H.H.LIHS Collection. It was decorated in gold on a 7-1/2" "Genuine Cobalt" plate.


SEASONAL PRODUCT PROMOTIONS

These seasonal promotions pictured the advertised product with some Christmas decorations.

"Sister Dresses" were a holiday promotion from Petite Baby Wear, In. of New York.


A bottle of Long John Blended Scotch Whisky was shown with an attractive package suitable for gift giving.


The Broxodent postcard suggested giving this automatic toothbrush as a gift to "avoid shopping crushes and last-minute rushes." Its gentle brushing action would help "keep Christmas smiles bright all year long." This brush looks like the same model that appeared in a Christmas magazine ad in 1963.


BUSINESS GREETINGS

Touch of Class Dry Cleaners of Boca Raton, Florida won first prizes in Florida boat parades.


The GTP (General Technical Plastics of Lionville, Pennsylvania) staff dressed up and had their picture taken to wish customers Happy Holidays.


One never knows what will turn up when collecting Christmas advertising postcards!

 

Chrome Christmas Postcards: Part 1—Greetings

Chrome Christmas Postcards: Part 2—Local Views

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