I have discovered through the years that people are either collectors or they are not. There is seldom an in-between. I happen to collect many different things. It can be a problem, but I don’t think it’s a hoarder type of problem. I’m sure that some of you who know me, might take issue with that statement!
Let’s start at the beginning. I was a youngster when I began collecting stamps. Since my mom was a letter writer, she showed me her canceled envelopes and how you could tear the corner off and soak stamps away from the paper. When they dried, I would put them in a binder. Then I found a company that for 10¢ they would let you consider buying stamps on approval. They would send me a small cellophane envelope filled with an assortment of stamps to look through. My mom let me keep one or two of my favorites each month and so I became a novice stamp collector.
I enjoyed collecting US stamps primarily and put them into a collector’s book for years. It was called the Harris Freedom Stamp Album of the United States. Here is the most recent addition. You can find it on Amazon. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
The book came complete with stories behind the stamps. I loved learning all about each stamp. I have pictures below of my actual book from childhood.
From stamps, I advanced to penny collecting. Nothing too harmful about that hobby, right? I had a small magnifying glass to check the dates on them and also began putting my finds into an album. I traded with a girl down the street but was very upset when she took one of my “silver” war pennies from the 1940s without my knowing it. I had permission to look through my mom’s change purse every day but found a quicker way to access many more pennies. I traded penny rolls with the Ice Cream Man that drove through the neighborhood. It was much more satisfying inspecting fifty pennies per evening. My collection grew and grew. Here is a photo of some of my pennies.
I dabbled in other coin denominations: nickels, dimes, and quarters as well as half dollars and silver dollars. I loved checking the dates on all the coins that passed through my hands every day. It was a bucket list kind of day when as an adult I visited the US Mint
in Washington DC. As I said, you either have this type of behavior inside of you or you do not. Here is a photo of a set of mint coins from the year I was born. I purchased it within the past few years on eBay
, just because!
Of course, as a sports fan, I collected baseball cards. Way back, it was all about the gum that was in the pack of new cards. I had all my cards sorted by teams and since I lived in LA, I loved my Dodger cards more than the rest. Whatever happened to those cards I will never know. Does that sound familiar? I can’t blame it on my mother for throwing them away, because she knew the pride I had in my collection. Perhaps they will turn up one day in the family home. Could those cards be worth millions now? No, but for sentimental reasons, I would love to find them again!
The stamps, coins, and baseball cards are typical things for a lot of collectors, but I have more specific and unusual collections as well. My pin collection is displayed in wooden framed cases with glass tops.
My largest collection is my Barbra Streisand collection which takes up a whole room!
What do you collect? I’d love to hear from you!