A Chicago library has inherited the nation’s largest public collection of postcards.
The Curt Teich archives collection includes about 2.5 million postcards that depict scenes from more than 10,000 towns and cities in the United States, Canada and 115 other countries during the 19th and 20th centuries.
The collection is named for the Curt Teich Co., the world’s largest manufacturer of postcards, which donated the archives to the Lake County Discovery Museum in Libertyville, IL, after ceasing operations in the 1970s.
The archives will now be moved to the Newberry Library in Chicago to ensure there are greater resources to care for the collection and expand its public reach.
The library plans to offer reference services for the collection by April. In the meantime, access is available to 30,000 digitized postcards at the Illinois Digital Archives.