Joyce Clyde Hall
Founder of Hallmark Cards Inc.
Background of J.C. Hall
- Born August 29, 1891 in David City, Nebraska
- Family was poor
- Youngest child and had two brothers, Rollie and William
- Father left him and his brothers to care for themselves and their bed-ridden mother
- Family was very religious (named after Methodist bishop, Isaac W. Joyce)
- Dropped out of high school at 18
- Had a job since he was 8, he sold perfume to neighbors and then eventually began working at his older brother's bookstore after school
- Determined to make his mark on the business world
Background of the Company
- In January 1910, high school dropout, J.C. Hall crammed two shoe boxes full of postcards, got on a train, and made his way to Kansas City, Missouri
- When business started picking up, his brother, Rollie joined him and they opened up a specialty store in downtown Kansas City
- In 1915, five years and a day after Hall arrived in Kansas City his entire inventory was wiped out by a fire
- The two Hall brothers bought an engraving firm which set the stage for the creation of the first Hallmark card designs
- In 1921, William Hall joined his two brothers in Kansas City to help run the business, forming Hall Brothers Inc., the predecessor of today's Hallmark
- While others said advertising the cards was a waste of money, J.C. began creating and placing ads, eventually establishing Hallmark as the most recognizable brand name in the industry
- Until the day J.C. Hall died no Hallmark greeting card would reach the marketplace without the "O.K.J.C." imprimatur
- Although he was wealthy, profit was never foremost in his thoughts, he wrote in his autobiography, "If a man goes into business with only the idea of making a lot of money, chances are he won't. But if he puts service and quality first, the money will take care of itself."
- Hall died Oct. 29, 1982 at the age of 91.
- Hall and his wife, Elizabeth had three children, one of their sons, Donald Joyce Hall is now chairman of the company his father founded
- His grancson, Donald J. Hall, Jr. is now president and CEO of the company