No Valentines

17-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Friday, February 14, 1913:  Cupid didn’t send me any valentines. Didn’t feel very well this morning.

My dearest sister was going to a box social, and then didn’t go because no one came for her. I’m glad I wasn’t going for then I would have been disappointed.

Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

Grandma didn't get any, but here is an example of a nice 1912 valentine postcard.

Hundred-year-old Valentine Postcard

I bet Grandma wished that a special guy had sent her a valentine like this one.

February must be the month for box socials. Grandma and her sister Ruth went to one the previous week-end.

Poor Ruth—it’s hard to be stood up. (Maybe I should be looking at this from Grandma’s perspective and feel happy—but I can’t help feeling bad for Ruth.)


Grandma’s matured a lot. In 1911 and 1912 she was really into sending ugly valentines–sometimes called vinegar valentines–to people who annoyed her; but in 1913 she never mentioned them. You might enjoy these posts  from previous years:

Anonymous Comic Valentines

Valentines: The Good, the Bad, and the Horrid

Bought Some Vinegar Valentines

Sending Ugly Valentines

15 Responses

  1. I am glad that the 100 year old valentine cards in my grandma’s scrapbooks were all nice ones. I posted the last two this evening.

  2. Oh dear, I know how she feels . . .

  3. Oh, how sad. I think we can all identify; I remember in school when the popular kids got lots of Valentine’s, and some of us only a couple from our good (also unpopular) friends. I’m going back to check your previous Valentine posts from Grandma’s scrapbook.

  4. Happy Valentine’s Day, Sheryl! I hope yours won’t be as disappointing as Grandma’s and Ruth’s was all those years ago… The old Valentine postcard is so sweet…

  5. Not a good day for your Helena. Hope your VDAY is much better.

  6. Valentines are wonderful but no valentines can hurt. I used to get “I love you” cards when I was a kid. They were signed, “From an Anonymous Admirer.” I was all puffed up for a while but soon learned they were from my mother! :)

    • I remember getting a “secret admirer” valentine when I was in third grade. Like you, I was really excited. Several years later my mother told me that she thought that my teacher had put the secret admirer valentines in students’ valentine boxes.

  7. I love those vinegar valentines. I learned something new!

  8. Oh those vinegar Valentine’s are really mean…I would probably bawl if someone gave me that big nose one. The message was horrid. Man, they had a very odd sense of humour back then.

    What a clout to stand up poor Ruth, that guy would have deserved one.

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