Here’s a sampling of the Valentine’s Day cards sent to young Billy Hazard of Garrett Park, between 1914 and 1917 (Billy was born in August, 1913).  Thanks to his mother Maude Wagstaff Hazard, who saved all of her son’s correspondence, we have a variety of cards styles, including…

valentine billy 1 coverA cut-out card, unsigned and undated, addressed in pencil to “Billy.”  The verse inside reads, “Dearest Valentine, this token / Only shows my love in part. / Did I dare think you’d accept it, / I would send to you my heart.”


valentine billy 1916 frontA postcard, addressed to Master Billy Hazard, Garrett Park, Md., signed only “B.B.,” and postmarked February 14, 1916.  The verse on the front reads, “If I’m your Valentine, would you say to me, ‘Good morning Glory’?” (Hmmmm.)  There’s no additional message from the sender.


valentine billy 2A tiny (2.75″ wide) handmade valentine: pencil and blue crayon on a cut-out, folded-over heart.  The front says “TO MY VALENTINE,” the inside “TO MY LOVE.”  On the back, in the same handwriting, is “Billy.”  A few other cards in the collection are from young Billy’s neighborhood friends; this is probably another one.


valentine billy 1914 frontAnd finally, another postcard that may or may not have been intended by the publisher as a valentine proper – though there are tiny hearts between the birds and the landscape – but which, according to the pencil note on the back, was given to Billy on February 14, 1914, “From James.”  I thought I’d end with this one, since it will be 100 years old on Friday.  Let this charming variety inspire you as you prepare for your own 2014 Valentine’s Day!

Billy’s 1913-1917 valentines (including several more not shown here) donated by the Barth family.