History online dating

In the late 1800s, The Matrimonial News in San Francisco became the first newspaper exclusively for singles — where they could read stories about the latest romantic goings-on and post ads for a mate.

This is a timeline of online dating services that also includes broader events related to technology-assisted dating (not just online dating).

When the first modern newspaper was invented, people bought personal ads to discreetly connect and communicate with one another in hopes of finding love or sex.

The possibilities for how it would impact our intimate lives and change the landscape of dating was soon to be seen. In these early days before digital cameras were the rage and you could share photos online, "chat" was just that.

People had to rely on words to paint the picture of who they were and what they wanted.

Until Helen Morrison came along, it was mostly men who were posting personal ads, with women or gay men answering them.

Helen’s ad appeared in a Lonely Hearts Column in the Manchester Weekly Journal, and it simply said she wanted “someone nice to spend my life with.” Instead of getting a response from “The One,” the mayor responded and sent her to an insane asylum for four weeks, according to an article in the Huffington Post. Throughout the 1800s, personal ads grew more and more popular, starting with noblemen and noblewomen and reaching the middle and lower classes once publications like The Wedding Bell, The Correspondent, Matrimonial Herald, and Marriage Gazette came out.

With the internet, the dating pool was infinite and not bound by geography.

You could talk about anything, with anyone, anywhere.

Matchmaker grew to 14 local BBSs throughout the US.

Eventually people lost interest as BBSs lost out to the World Wide Web, and Matchmaker was superseded by

English royalty, the Salem Witch Trials, Greek mythology? In this article, I’ll walk you through everything that has to do with the history of online dating — from personal ads to dating apps.

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