shops were quite popular for fashionable lady's dresses, where shop
influenced styles of dress. One of the most ornate millinery
this trade card is for Madame Walsh of Boston.
|Taking in boarders or
allowed women to bring in income while staying at home to care for
children. This trade card advertises a boarding establishment run by
offering "Partial or full Board, on moderate terms."
primary work was within the household, but if the family's business
a shop, the women of the family might frequently be asked to help
women did operate their own shops, and advertised their goods with
cards, newspaper ads, and word-of-mouth. This trade card for Jane
advertises imported goods from London sold at her shop in Boston.
cards were not originally called trade cards, but rather
bills," and sometimes doubled as receipts for customers, with
side being used to total up the cost of purchased goods. This trade
includes a receipt for goods purchased on April 17, 1769. It is the
known trade card for a female merchant. Gift of Gary L. Milan. Click
the image to enlarge.
In seacoast towns, male shopkeepers were often mariners as well,
meant that they were out at sea for extended periods of time. This
their wives and daughters the opportunity to run the shop alone.
homemade items were sold in shops, including textiles, candles,
This is another early trade card for a female merchant who ran
shop. Lydia Learned not only advertised her goods, but also the
of her shop by mentioning a nearby landmark. It was common to list
or to have the shop's sign engraved on the card so that customers
locate the shop more easily.
||Newspaper advertising was an important
merchants to reach potential customers. This ad for a "Family
from Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, Feb. 2, 1861,
it was successfully published by a woman. Notice the "agents
section of the ad, which lists ladies along with the respected
of teachers, postmasters, and clergymen.
||Female merchants would have been at
and have had some understanding of accounting or a system of barter
to properly keep account books. Barter was a common method of
goods. This trade card from Jaffrey, New Hampshire advertises
made by a woman.
This image of a farmer's daughter on her way into the village to
poultry is called "Scenes in the Country." It was
lithographed by A. Kollner's Lithography in Philladelphia.