In 1907, Ohio-businessman Edgar Allen lost his son in a streetcar accident. The lack of adequate medical services available to save his son prompted Allen to sell his business and begin a fund-raising campaign to build a hospital in his hometown of Elyria, Ohio. Through this new hospital, Allen was surprised to learn that children with disabilities were often hidden from public view. Inspired by this discovery, in 1919 Allen founded what became known as the National Society for Crippled Children, the first organization of its kind.
In the spring of 1934, the organization launched its first Easter “seals” campaign to raise money for its services. To show their support, donors placed the seals on envelopes and letters. Cleveland Plain Dealer cartoonist J.H. Donahey designed the first seal. Donahey based the design on a concept of simplicity because those served by the charity asked “simply for the right to live a normal life.”
The lily – a symbol of spring – was officially incorporated as Easter Seals’ logo in 1952 for its association with resurrection and new life and has appeared on each seal since.
To learn more about Easter Seals and how you can be involved, click here.
To purchase your very own Easter Seals BowTie, click here and receive 15% off with the code EASTERSEALS, good through March 7th!
Let’s all take the first step to making the First Five Count!