Interesting and Unusual Postcards to Collect

2015_03_19_20_48_28by Dede Horan

Why do people collect postcards?  There are probably about as many reasons for doing so as there are collectors.  Some people are hooked by the nostalgia captured in these small pieces of paper.  Others may have acquired cards from a relative and soon find themselves adding to their new collections.  Some images are so eye-catching that they are worth framing.  Those “eye catching” cards are often a bit more obscure or unusual and are what make postcard collecting interesting and fun.

For about every category imaginable, there are probably postcards to go with it, and there are people who collect them.  Having been an avid collector for over fifty years and a dealer in antique/collectible cards since 1996, I’ve met a good many collectors along the way.  It’s always interesting to hear some of the topics that people request at the shows. 

One customer asked if I had cards showing people or animals on stilts.  That caught me off guard.  I couldn’t put my hands on a ‘stilt’ card that day but several months later I came across one while sorting through my inventory … and since then, I’ve come across a number of others!

Other collectors have asked for postcards that show rolling pins, corkscrews, hot dogs, lawnmowers, accordions, ladies wearing lockets, quilts as backdrops, and Tarpon fish, just to name a few.   And hearing these requests sends me on a search to find those unusual cards.

The hunt is exciting because you never know what will turn up.   Each dealer files cards by their own system so you may need the dealer’s help to find what you’re looking for.  If you are a fairly new collector and haven’t quite decided what to focus on, try shopping the “bargain” boxes.  Searching through these boxes can turn up unexpected treasures.

Several years ago, I found a wonderful miniature card in a bargain box.  (It is pictured here.)  To me, it is a delightful gem!  It  measures only 1 5/8 inches by 2 1/4 inches and actually survived the mail.

If you’re wondering what to collect, you way find that special postcard that sets you off on a glorious adventure at the upcoming Denver Postcard & Paper Show to be held on Friday, May 1 and Saturday, May 2 at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall, 15200 W. 6th Ave., Golden.  Hours are 11:30 am to 7:30 pm on Friday and 9:30 am to 5:00 pm on Saturday.  Admission is $5.00 ($1.00 off with a copy of this article).  Children 12 and under are free.

There will be dealers from Illinois, Wyoming, Minnesota, Kansas and across Colorado with a wide array of postcards as well as many stereoview cards, trade cards, photographs, early advertising, maps and early railroad, mining and western memorabilia.  Pictured are some other examples of early postcards you might find while shopping at the show.

For more information contact Dede at 303-667-6212.

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