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Vintage Valentine Exhibition

Come see the Museum's collection of vintage Valentine's and decorations at Be Our Valentine, a special mini exhibit at 10B Crescent, the Museum's historic house. Be Our Valentine is a light-hearted look at love in the 40s and 50s. There's lots to see in addition to cards including love-themed advertisements for everything from tires to peas, heart-shaped candy boxes from brands that Greenbelters would have access to at the drugstore co-op in town, and examples of magazines full of romance like True Story.

It's not all light-hearted fun, however. We also have collected examples of offensive and racist Valentines which would have been very common in the first half (and beyond) of the 20th century. We put these in a binder with a content warning so that visitors who are interested can access them. We made the decision not to display them outside of the binder because of their offensive content. There are cards depicting black children, native Americans, and Asians with exaggerated features and caricaturized ways of speaking. Though we have not found any of these cards in the museum collection, Greenbelters would have exchanged them just as people all across the country did.

We also want to hear your Greenbelt love stories! Jot down your love story or how your family decorated for the Valentine's Day here inside the visitor center at 10A Crescent. To read more about how Valentine's Day has been celebrated in Greenbelt, check out our short write up (see below). To pick up a copy of the write up for yourself or to see the mini exhibition, come by on Sundays from 1-5pm. Admission is $5 or less and tours are offered on the 1/2 hour.

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