I don't have good news for you. The chances of you having one or two rare and valuable stamps is tiny. And the market for stamp collecting is tiny compared to what it was in the 1930s to 1960s.
The primary driver of collector interest in the US was, believe it or not, President Franklin D Roosevelt, the most...
Best answer: I don't have good news for you. The chances of you having one or two rare and valuable stamps is tiny. And the market for stamp collecting is tiny compared to what it was in the 1930s to 1960s.
The primary driver of collector interest in the US was, believe it or not, President Franklin D Roosevelt, the most famous stamp collector in the world. Hundreds of thousands of Americans saved the stamps they got, and his fame led to the hobby spreading to other countries. Stamps were printed in the hundreds of thousands to the millions, even as far back as the late 1800s. Don't forget, written communication was THE primary method of communication. Everybody wrote letters and everybody used postage stamps, everywhere in the world.
If you flip through the pages of your books, you will notice that the plainness of stamps, which generally carried portraits of heads of state or national symbols of issuing countries, began to give way starting in the 1930s to 'commemorative' issues that cover3ed a whole variet of subjects. This was totally the result of increased interest in stamp collecting. Issuing governments saw it as way to generate revenue. What better way to raise money than to sell a very profitable product that will never be used for its intended purpose?
Consequently, many thousands to millions of stamps from many, many countries, going back to before 1900, are still around, and worth very little.
Now, you might have some good ones. If you don't know anything about how to research value, involving judging condition grade and how to spot the numerous varieties and different printing dates for what look like identical stamps, it will take you a year to learn by reading and looking up your stamps every day.
The best online price guide there is is eBay.
Locally, what you will find if you take the collection to shops is that you will be given a dealer's 'buy' price, not an appraisal of actual value. If you WANT an appraisal of actual value, you can get one, but you will pay for it - by the hour. It is rarely worth the cost, because you rarely have anything rare.
So, find as many local REPUTABLE dealers in your area as you can find, and take the best price you are offered. Do not expect a lot of money. The collector market has been on the decline for years. The corner blocks of four stamps with the block numbers, that I was buying from around 1968 to 1971 (these were 4, 5, 6, 8 or 10 cent stamps, X 4 per block, which ate up a good chunk of a 13-16 year old's allowance) for every single new US stamp that was issued, was money I wasted. I should have used them as postage. Today, people are finding out that those unused stamps that their grandparents had aren't good for much EXCEPT as postage. Not everything, of course, but much of it, there was just TOO much of it printed.
1 week ago