How To Start Your Own Railroad Antiques Collection
If you have an interest in collecting railroad antiques the best way to start is at the beginning. You can start your collection with paper ephemera, some of these include: tickets, dining menus and schedules.
Antique b&o railroad locomotive train emblem
ANTIQUE RED RAILROAD LANTERN
Antique Railroad Five Bell Dinner Chime
Antique Dressel Arlington NJ Four Lens RailRoad Crossing Lantern
Antique cast iron railroad spittoon old porcelain lined trolley cuspidor FREE SH
Antique Dressel 4 Way Switch Railroad Lantern Chicago/New York
Tickets and schedules are still fairly accessible depending on how far back you would like to go with your collection.
1. Schedules and Tickets
You can start your search for these ephemera at some flea markets, book dealers or ephemera dealers.
Schedules and train tickets are the most cost effective way to start on your collection. You will find that schedules came out in multiple editions and were mass produced.
Train tickets are additionally easy to find especially used ones and you will be able to pick these up from about $5. The more rare ones may be difficult to find but they are out there.
2. Dining menus
Depending on the train and the country you can find the most fascinating food menus from these old trains.
These type of menus range between 50 to 60 dollars a piece. You can even start a collection on the menu’s they had for children.
3. Calendars and Posters
This collection is a lot more expensive than the tickets and the menus. Railroads owned a printing press that they would use to advertise on certain posters and calendars.
A highly collectible calendar dates back to the 20th Century. This era introduced streamlined trains and the rail road companies started advertising on posters through out the 1920’s to the 1930’s.
The most valuable calendars that are still in good condition can easily fetch a very high price. They are usually sold at auctions, if you would like to invest in one of these it is recommended you set aside a lot of money.
The companies in these times used the posters to advertise and display their services at well known travel agencies.
When you start this type of collection try and put your focus into a certain train line or area. It is very easy to get side tracked and you will want your collection to represent a certain theme.
You could even focus your search on your own home town it may make your collection more meaningful to you.
How ever you decide to start your collection have fun with it and try sticking to a certain theme. Allocate a certain amount of money you have available and try not to overspend.