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Highlighting the Holidays: A Kodak Moment

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They say a picture is worth 1,000 words, and in the early 20th century, the Kodak Company wanted to make sure you were fully equipped to capture those moments, particularly for the holidays.

The Kodak Christmas Story. 1907. Duke University
The Kodak Christmas Story. 1907. Duke University

In this ad from the Eastman Kodak Co., (1907), consumers were encouraged to buy a Kodak camera to capture their own Christmas story.

“Wherever children are there’s a Christmas story, yes, and all the year round story for the Kodak to record – a story that grows in interest as the years go by.”

“Let the grown folks with a Kodak and the Children with a Brownie join in building the family Kodak Book. And there’s no better way to being than with pictures of Christmas Day.”

The Brownie was a long-running popular series of simple and inexpensive cameras made by Kodak that really introduced the concept of the “snapshot.” Kodak advertisements particularly targeted children when promoting this camera because of its simplicity and ease of use.

These advertisements are part of “The Emergence of Advertising in America,” presented in partnership with Duke University. More than 9,000 images illustrate the rise of consumer culture, especially after the American Civil War, and the birth of a professionalized advertising industry in the United States.

More historical holiday finds from the Library of Congress can be found here. Happy Holidays!




  1. With a Kodak camera many could instantly capture a moment in time which could not be captured in mere words.

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