Spring scrolls were originally called 'tao fu' . Commencing with lunar December some scholars began to write these scrolls under the eaves of the market stalls to earn some extra money. New scrolls were gradually posted, after the ceremonial sacrifices to the Kitchen God, on doors house after house, giving the neighbourhood a fresh look.
Fucha Dunchong (Qing Dynasty) from the Annual Records of the Capital
Putting up the spring scrolls - In the lunar new year, it is a custom to post couplets written on red paper on doors. This is practised in all parts of China. It originated from the custom of writing charms on peach wood.
'Tao Fu' - In ancient times, during the Spring Festival, people hung up two peachwood plaques on their doors. On the peach wood were either a pair of portraits of the Door God or a couplet. Both were intended to drive away evil spirits. After the Ming Dynasty these were written on sheets of paper which were called spring scrolls.