Posters, Hollywood memorabilia are main attractions in Potter & Potter entertainment auction April 7

Images courtesy of Potter & Potter Auctions, PotterAuctions.com

Dr. Cyclops (1940, Swedish), 37½ x 27½ inches, est. $600 to $800.

I love Potter & Potter Auctions: There, I’ve said it. Even when I’m not bidding, I can’t help being fascinated by this smallish Chicago auction house’s specialties: circus and sideshow, gambling, coin-op and advertising, and especially magic collectibles (with occasional rare book and illustration art auctions as well). Imagine: auctions loaded with vintage magicians’ artifacts, antique gumball dispensers, retro signage, rare photos, etc., etc. Small wonder they make international news: In their Feb. 4, 2017, magic auction, Potter & Potter sold a 1912 poster advertising Harry Houdini’s Water Torture Cell escape act for a whopping $114,000.00 – a world record for a magic poster sold at public auction. Continue reading “Posters, Hollywood memorabilia are main attractions in Potter & Potter entertainment auction April 7”

Old news is good news for collectors

Images courtesy of Timothy Hughes Rare & Early Newspapers, www.RareNewspapers.com

Newsprint of president Lincon
A rare image of a pre-bearded Abraham Lincoln, one of eleven Republican presidential hopefuls featured on a double-page centerfold in the May 12, 1860, Harper’s Weekly. $300.

Newspapers are what one of my favorite history professors termed “primary sources”: Like diaries, photographs, documents and other artifacts, they are original historical material as opposed to a second- or third-hand description of events plus any number of add-ons and asides, which is what most history books are.

A newspaper – taking into account the speed of communication at the time it was published – is about as immediate as you can get.

Add to that the fact that newspapers, like books, can touch on virtually any collecting field, and you can understand why I like to tell fellow collectors about Timothy Hughes Rare & Early Newspapers (rarenewspapers.com).

Imagine the possibilities … Continue reading “Old news is good news for collectors”

The Zen of collecting

Collecting is about restraint, not the lack of it. If you buy selectively, you’re a collector; if you buy reflexively or compulsively, you’re a hoarder. In other words:
Don’t amass “stuff.” Collect something that is meaningful to you. Don’t get locked into a habit. True collecting is much more than just acquisitiveness; it’s about knowing all you can about your subject and, even better, finding out something new that other collectors may not know.

The following was originally posted online in 2013 in slightly different form.

  1. Collecting is about restraint, not the lack of it. If you buy selectively, you’re a collector; if you buy reflexively or compulsively, you’re a hoarder. In other words:
  2. Don’t amass “stuff.” Collect something that is meaningful to you. Don’t get locked into a habit. True collecting is much more than just acquisitiveness; it’s about knowing all you can about your subject and, even better, finding out something new that other collectors may not know.
  3. Continue reading “The Zen of collecting”