Postcard Sizes

St. Cecilia Hall, College of St. Benedict

St. Cecilia Hall, College of St. Benedict

Standard Size

In 1878, the Universal Postal Union decided on a standard size for postcards. It was 3 1/2 x 5 1/2 inches.

This picture postcard of St. Cecilia Hall, along with its neighbors St. Gertrude (on left, with turret) and St. Benedict (on right, with cupola) Halls, is a standard size card. It was published in about 1956 by E.C. Kropp, St. Paul, using halftone offset lithography on glossy stock.

Ardolf Science Center, College of St. Benedict

Ardolf Science Center, College of St. Benedict

Continental

In 1970, a larger postcard size common in Europe (hence the term Continental) was introduced to the United States. They are 4 x 6 inches. This is the most common postcard size today.

The picture postcard of Ardolf Science Center is a chrome, Continental, from 1994, when the building was new.

Scene from the pageant, "So Let Your Light Shine"

Scene from the pageant, "So Let Your Light Shine"

The picture postcard of the Pageant is also a Continental.

If this were a photographic print, it would be designated "printed later." The photo is from the 1954 Pageant, but the postcard was published in about 1997.

The Pageant was an annual fall event at the College of Saint Benedict, intended to present the sweep of Benedictine history to incoming students. In the photo chosen for the postcard, a "Flame" is subduing a barbarian, symbolizing Benedictines bringing the light of the Gospel.

Blazers Hockey Postcard

Blazers Hockey Postcard

The Blazers Hockey postcard is from about 2003. It is 4 1/4 x 6 inches. This is the largest size that the United States Postal Service allows to be mailed at the postcard rate.

Windows of rheamy antique glass from Germany

Windows of rheamy antique glass from Germany

Oversize

Postcards larger than Continentals are considered oversize.

This 1988 postcard with a photo by S. Annette Brophy, OSB, was part of a set about Sacred Heart Chapel. It is printed on glossy 5 x 7 cardstock.

Sacred Heart Chapel as seen through the ceiling of the Gathering Place, a focal point of the Order of St. Benedict Monastery

Sacred Heart Chapel as seen through the ceiling of the Gathering Place

The College of Saint Benedict sent out a calendar for 1997, shortly after the inauguration of Mary Lyons as president, and the dedication of the Haehn Campus Center. Each month had a tear-off oversized picture postcard.

Postcard Sizes