“Naughty” French Postcards From the 1920s

Taking erotic pictures and then sending them to your partner seems like something people have always managed to do. In the late 19th century and the early 20th though, taking photographs was not that easy, and exchanging “French Postcards” was that time’s sexting.

Most of these postcards were made in France, hence the informal “French Postcards,” and they were a lucrative practice for early photographers, who would produce these under a nickname as they had to avoid being stigmatized and protect themselves from having troubles with the law. Sending these postcards via mail was actually illegal in the U.S. and the only way to find them was in stores and through French street traders.

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