Skip to main content
Oskar Diethelm Library, Weill Cornell Medical College

Advertising Cards

Dr. Adolph's Headine


Also known as trade cards, these small, colorful pieces of advertising were highly valued by manufacturers’ as a way to connect personally with their consumers. Scrapbooking trade cards became a popular pastime, and advertisers took advantage of this in different ways. Products were given trademarks or easily recognizable brand images, ensuring that even after the cards were pasted into a scrapbook, the product they were selling was still readily apparent. Shopkeepers and grocers handed out trade cards and inserted them into packages. Cards became a medium for serialized stories, requiring customers to purchase more of the product in order to read the rest of the story.