Happy Valentines's Day
Did you know:
-A young Frenchman, Charles, Duke of Orleans, was one of the earliest creators of valentines, called "poetical or amorous addresses." From his confinement in the Tower of London after the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, he sent several poems or rhymed love letters or "valentines" to his wife in France.
-A young girl was supposed to marry, eventually, the first eligible male she met on this day. If a girl was curious and brave enough she could conjure up the appearance of her future spouse by going to the graveyard on St. Valentine's Eve at midnight. She would then sing a prescribed chant and run around the church twelve times.
-In England, little children went about singing of St. Valentine and collecting small gifts. It was also customary to place valentines on their friends' doorsteps.
-The first U.S. made valentines were crafted by a Mount Holyoke College student, Miss Esther Howland. Her father, a stationer in Worcester, MA, imported valentines every year from England. Esther, however, decided to create her own valentine messages. Around 1830 she began importing lace, fine papers, and other supplies for her valentines. She employed several assistants and her brothers helped market her "Worcester" valentines. As one of our first successful U.S. career women her sales amounted to about a hundred thousand dollars annually--not bad for the 1830's.
Thanks to Valentine Be Mine for this information.