Are you ready to celebrate World Letter Writing Day on September 1? If yes, now is the time to pick up a pen and pour out your feelings on a piece of paper. Yes, writing something down may seem like a peculiar idea in this day and age, but it will definitely be one of the most interesting things you have done in a long time. The letter can be a love letter, one filled with anger, or even one simply written to create memories. All you have to do is write it, and hand it over to the one it is addressed to. So grab your pen and get started!
History of World Letter Writing Day
The day was founded by Australian author, artist, and photographer Richard Simpkin, who adores writing handwritten letters. It all started when he began writing to individuals he considered as Australian Legends, and also received their responses! In 2005, his experience in writing letters to legends made it possible for him to publish the book “Australian Legends.” In the book, he paid a tribute to the art of writing letters and looked back at how it changed everything for him. To further honor handwritten letters, he created the World Letter Writing Day in 2014. He also holds letter-writing workshops in schools to promote the art.
Letter writing itself has existed for centuries and was present in ancient Egypt and Greece times. At that point though, letters were written on materials such as metal, lead, wax-coated wooden tablets, pottery fragments, animal skin, and papyrus. Earlier in the 17th and 18th centuries, letters were merely used to send information, specific news, information, or greetings. Others used letters to exchange ideas and formulate critical thinking regarding particular subjects. This is why several letters gathered from the past serve as an archive of personal and diplomatic interactions for historians. They are even used to determine how many events in history played out.
From thereon, letters became an art form and stood out as a genre of literature. Things changed a great deal when postal services were created and people started using letters for personal interaction. In fact, during times of war, letters were the only way families and lovers could stay in touch.
World Letter Writing Day timeline
Messages are written on the leaves of plants and the bark of trees
Persian Queen Atossa writes the first hand-written letter.
King Henry VIII writes a love letter to Anne Boleyn, who later becomes his second wife
The postage stamp Penny Black is invented in the U.K.
World Letter Writing Day FAQs
When did World Letter Writing Day start?
The day was founded in 2014 by an individual called Richard Simpkin.
Is letter writing dying?
Since technology has taken over the world, it is safe to say the tradition of letter writing is dying.
How a letter is written?
All you have to do is pick a plain paper, start writing your thoughts for a recipient, and then mail the letter to them through the post office.
World Letter Writing Day Activities
Write a letter
To celebrate the day, write a letter to a friend or family member. Chances are, they will reply to you in writing too!
The current generation might not know how to write a letter and mail it via the post. If you come across someone like that, use this day to teach them the process
Read some famous letters
Relive the art of letter writing by reading letters of famous writers, artists, kings, and presidents across the world.
5 Fun Facts About Letter Writing
Letters by Charles Darwin
Charles Darwin sent 1,400 letters to his friend Joseph Dalton Hooker.
Writing letters reduces stress
Writing helps in organizing thoughts and puts the brain in a meditative state
Origins of the term ‘pen pal’
‘Pen pal’ was added in the Oxford English Dictionary 1931.
Letters were once delivered by horse riders and coaches.
The longest letter
The letter was written on 3,200 feet of narrow tape by a woman in the U.S — she wrote to her boyfriend who was serving in the army.
Why We Love World Letter Writing Day
It’s a thoughtful way to communicate with those you love
Since letter writing is all about writing feelings and messages down in your own handwriting, it brings a personal touch to the act.
Letter writing makes memories
Though emails can be saved, it's not as much fun going through them after ten years. Letters, on the other hand, are nostalgic and will be cherished by your friends and family for decades.
It keeps the trend of letter writing alive
The day is a great reminder of the art of letter writing and plays a crucial role in keeping the art alive. Plus, our coming generations would even know what letter writing is till we keep dropping reminders.
World Letter Writing Day dates