As a young girl I remember having several scrapbooks that I filled with clippings from magazines, poems, thoughts and pictures I liked. One book contained many photos and articles of interest on the royal family. But those weren’t the early days of scrapbooking―not by far.
As early as the 1600s, a common book was used for keeping scraps such as important information, jokes, and ideas. In the early 1700s, John Locke wrote a book on how to preserve excerpts, proverbs, etc. With the invention of colour printing in the late 1700s, came a great interest to include such pictures in scrapbooks. This also led to the production of albums with embossed covers and engraved clasps.
By 1825 the term “scrapbook” became so popular as a hobby that magazines were published with suggestions on how to use pictures and newspaper clippings to fill a book.
Today many people think scrapbooking is for ladies only. But did you know Thomas Jefferson was a scrapbooker? He created a series of albums filled with newspaper clippings of his presidency. After he retired, he made a scrapbook titled “The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth” which included clippings from several Bibles that he personally found important.
Another scrapbooker, also a man, invented a very popular adhesive scrapbook containing prepasted pages. That man was Mark Twain who created at least 57 scrapbooks filled with scraps, pictures, souvenirs, and so on about his trips, lectures and books.
Of course the invention of photography brought a whole new aspect to scrapbooks.
In 1980 a woman named Marielen Christensen shared her 50 volumes of decorated pages of family memory books at the World Conference of Records in Utah. This caused such a stir that she and her husband published a manual on how to preserve and arrange family memories and opened the first scrapbooking store. By the mid-1990s, scrapbooking became one of the fastest growing hobbies.
In 1996 the first website for scrapbooking was created.
Rhonda Anderson, co-founder of Creative Memories and now working with Heritage Makers, was a leader in helping to change the focus of scrapbooking from solely creating a book that records family history, to one that demonstrates God at work within that family.