A Christmas Bicycle to Benjamin – Lancaster, PA (circa 1900)

Benjamin Stauffer was born in 1900, so he was about 10 years old when he received the Christmas postcard from his cousin, Anna.

We may assume that Anna lived nearby as the postcard was not mailed.

Although bicycles first became popular in the 19th century, improvements to the product (inflatable tires, improved braking and steering, e.g.) and mass production fueled a surge in bicycle ownership in the early 20th century.

Postcard illustrations of bicycles reflected the spread of cycling.

This postcard illustration shows a boy and a girl sharing a bicycle adorned with holly.  The girl waves another holly branch as they speed through a winter landscape.

Printed in Germany for the US market, the postcard drawing is titled, “A Merry Christmas”.

It is not possible for us to know if Benjamin already had a bicycle, or if he (like many boys and girls) was eager to obtain one.

One hopes that he, and Cousin Anna, enjoyed a joyful Christmas.


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