Valentine’s Day has local roots

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – Here’s a fun fact! Those valentines you’ve probably been making for years have a local tie.

Mount Holyoke College put a display of valentines out to honor Esther Howland, a woman who graduated from the school in 1847 and started the American valentine industry.

The story goes; she received a valentine from England that she loved so much she started making them here in the states, earning her the nickname, “The Mother of the American Valentine”.

Leslie Fields told 22News, “I think it’s really exciting especially because she became a prominent business woman and eventually made 100,000 a year selling them and she made a whole industry out of her home which is cool to come from little pieces of paper, ribbon and lace.”

To honor the history, students on Friday were making valentines in the campus library.

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