Are you one
of those people who has saved a memento of a special event? It may be
a menu from a great restaurant, or tickets to a once in a lifetime concert
or theatre performance. How about photographs, baseball cards, comic
books or posters?
All of these are in a category known in the antique and collectibles
world as Ephemera. Generally made of paper, these collectibles have
occasionally been described as “things that are destined for the
wastebasket but never quite made it”.
Commonly, paper antiques are collected for two reasons: 1. for decorative
display such as in the case of valentines, postcards, or calling cards,
and 2. for research such as manuscripts, magazines, and catalogues,
to name only a few.
Collectors tend to acquire ephemera based on its topic (or subject)
or its type. Type refers to what the piece is, for example magazines,
autograph books, prints or documents. Topical collectors purchase items
in any category that have to do with a particular interest such as car
racing, the circus, golf, or royalty.
Due to the fragile, transient nature of the objects themselves, few
have survived, therefore of those that have, many can be worth a tidy
sum. For example, valentines that sold in the early part of the 20th
century for a penny can be worth from $25 to $50 – depending on
the subject matter, the work involved and its condition. Condition is
of prime importance.
Books are a great source of information on this area of collectibles.
Price guides will identify what is worth something and what is at this
time, simply a curiosity. Check out antique stores and malls and attend
displays or shows. Remember, the fun is in the search.
Attend our free workshop on October on Wed October 26th. Call 448 9671
Written by Johanne
Stony Plain Road
AB T5N 3N3