Skip to Content

Celebration History

No one celebrated birthdays before 4000 B.C., because there was no way to keep track of time. People could figure out how old they were only after the calendar was invented, but only kings celebrated birthdays then because no records were kept on the births of common people.

Even after the Greeks began to compile statistics for tax and military purposes, only heads of important families were allowed to celebrate their birthdays.

Today, people around the world celebrate birthdays with cakes, candles, presents and cards, which became popular in England and the United States around 1850, shortly after the first Christmas card.

Birthday Card Features

Hallmark offers a selection of more than 2,600 birthday cards. These cards address a variety of relationships including spouses, children, siblings, grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, cousins, step-family relationships and friends. Hallmark also offers birthday cards for other special people like twin, pastor, priest, godparents, godchild, teacher, secret pal, coworker and more. There are even some cards available to wish “Happy Birthday” to the family pet or can be sent to the birthday person from the family pet.

As well, Hallmark offers birthday cards for unique situations, such as half-birthday, mutual birthday, leap-day birthday and birthdays that fall on holidays. Specific cards mark children’s ages from 1st to 10th, as well as milestones including 13th, 16th, 18th, 21st, 30th, 40th, 50th, 60th, 65th and in five-year increments through 100th. In 2009, Hallmark improved and expanded its collection of milestone birthday cards in response to consumer research that revealed:

  • Some consumers preferred milestone birthday cards that talk in general about the life stage without mentioning the age.
  • When attending milestone birthday celebrations, guests often are told not to bring a gift, but they still want to bring a little something. Hallmark introduced cards that can act as small gifts, such as a card with a wine glass image and detachable wine charm.
  • Milestone parties often pay tribute to the birthday person with slide shows or posters that show pictures through the years. Some new cards enable the sender to add photos and have space to write memories.

Through the Hallmark Signature Collection, Hallmark introduces a new offering of handcrafted everyday greeting cards. Each card is designed with beautiful papers, rich textures and just the right embellishments.

In Stores & Online

Available at Hallmark Gold Crown® stores nationwide, online at and wherever Hallmark products are sold. A variety of gift items also are available at Hallmark Gold Crown stores. Use the store locator on to find the nearest retailer.