Joyce Clyde Hall was born on August 29th 1891 in David City in Nebraska. He disliked the name Joyce so usually adapted the name “J.C”. His father was a minister and from the age of 8 started working small sales jobs to help out with the family income. In 1905 along with his brothers, he decided to spend $150 on postcards which he sold to the salespeople that sold books to the shop in which he was working. In 1908 he set up the Norfolk Post Card Company in Norfolk, Nebraska, and he later went on to found The Hallmark Card Company which led to him becoming a millionaire.
When he was 18 years old, with a couple of shoe boxes full of postcards, Hall moved to Kansas City in Missouri in 1910, the time at which the Hallmark Cards Company was founded. By 1913 along with his brothers he was running a store that sold postcards and greetings cards. In 1915 the store got burned, but later this store went on to become the current Halls department store in Kansas City.
After the store got burned down Hall went on to buy an engraving business. After this he started to print his own cards that were marketed with the brand name of Hallmark. His business was better than it had ever been and was successful even during the period of the Great Depression, a time of serious economic hardship. His business was going so well that not one worker had to be laid off during this period.
It was in 1928 in which the company began using the name Hallmark. They named their company after the hallmark symbol that goldsmiths used in London in the past. They began printing this name on the back of all the cards they produced. In 1931 William E. Coutts Company Ltd, a major Canadian card making company became affiliated with Hall Brothers.
In 1954 the name Halls Brothers was changed to Hallmark, and in 1958 the William E Coutts Company Ltd was taken over by Hallmark, and until the 1990s the Canadian section of the Hallmarks Company was called “Coutts Hallmark”.
The Hallmark cards company is currently still based in Kansas City, and is the biggest manufacturer of greetings cards in America. In fact it is estimated that around 50% of all greetings card that are sent in America are manufactured by the Hallmark Company.
Hall retired in 1966 and died in Kansas City in 1982.
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