Sunday, March 23, 2014

This Week in Bookplates 3/23/2014

Earlier in the week I spotted a  collection of 160 bookplates on Ebay and asked the seller this question:

Q: What do the corners of the two presidential bookplates look like when removed from the corner mounts.?
 Do they show a darkening or any change in color ? 
Thanks for your help. Lew Jaffe
A: They are the same as the rest of the bookplate. Thanks! 
Kate Doordan Klavan  carefully read the Ebay listing and sent me this email::
" My question for you is, what does learning that the corners of the plates are the same tone as the exposed surface tell you? Is it that the exposed areas of the plates were well protected or that there's something not right about the collection? Maybe you could do an edition of 'Maven on various aspects of condition that wouldn't be obvious to those of us who aren't sophisticated, experienced collectors."

This is my response to her inquiry.
Old photo mounts can and often do react with the bookplates  leaving hidden unsightly burn marks in the corners .

Here are some other questions to ask when offered a bookplate an album
How are the bookplates mounted ?
If they are glued in what kind of glue was used ?
If  the glue used was rubber cement or what we used to call airplane glue you should be very careful.
Airplane glue* resists most solvents and rubber cement eventually damages and stains the bookplates.

Does the collection pass the smell test?
Old albums stored in grandma's attic can get musty or mildewed.This isn't an insurmountable problem if you plan to remove and soak the bookplates but it is time consuming  and needs to be considered when negotiating a price.

If the collection is in another city state or country many established dealers with send it to you for your perusal if you  pay the postage and insurance.Private individuals may  not want to send a collection to a stranger so you should ask the seller if he plans to be in your area in the near future or if he has a friend or relative who lives near you .Perhaps you could arrange to examine the collection that way..
If all else fails scans or xerox copies of the 15 nicest plates in the collection should be requested.

Negotiating a price for grandma's collection is often tricky. Most sellers, understandably have no frame of reference and the negotiation is often challenging
.In any event buying collections has always been something I enjoy.

In case you are wondering I was not the high bidder on the Ebay collection it sold for $598,88 plus postage.

 Buying collections enables you to get duplicates for exchanges with other collectors.
Here are a few duplicates I currently have for possible exchange.

I have many many more so drop me a note about the kinds of bookplates you are searching for.

There is a wealth of useful bookplate information on You Tube.

 Here are some examples:

How to remove a bookplate:

An Excellent Bookplate Reference Book

See You again next Sunday

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