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Well Kept Secret of Old Time Antique Dealers

Years ago there was an antique dealer that lived in the little town of Funkstown, not far from where I live today. He was considered eccentric , because his little shop was filled with what looked like trash. There was a narrow path to get to the door , and once inside you maneuvered through a maze of piles of stuff to get to the counter. To the locals who were not in the antique business, he was eccentric. To antique dealers around here in that era, he was the one you went to for reference and to talk shop. Although I remember the outside of the shop, I was one of those who just looked at the place as a junk dealer's shop. Many years later when he passed on to the sky above, I realized he was a genius. He was even invited a few times to D.C. to lecture about antiques. By this time I was still green as far as knowledge of the antique business. I attended his estate auction because I heard there was antique paper being offered. And there was...not just paper, but the entire old building was lined with stacks of old catalogues and magazines. Not the kind the general public received. Instead, the kind the retail store would receive, wholesale catalogs. Everyone that was in the business was at that auction. The prices went sky high, it was amazing. I was able to buy a few of those catalogs and still have them today. This is the kind of item where condition does not have merit...at least in those days, because this type item was very important if you were going to be a success in the antique business. Wholesale catalogs that went to the retailers were the " Bible " for the old timers antique business. For instance, A lady comes into your shop looking to add pieces to her silverware...what is the pattern ? Look it up in your catalog....So many times through the years someone will ask me ( and other dealers in this business ), how do you know so much about this stuff ? This would be before the Internet...and , unlike today where all things are revealed, the answer was just a shrug with a smile or wink. And , those reference books that are written these days, chances are they used the old catalogs and magazines for most of the research...that is why old catalogs are being reprinted today. So, through the years I have sold some of my wonderful catalogs, but my favorites are still here in secret niches of the house to enjoy when all alone. Better than reading a book . Shown are a few of my favorite catalogs to give you an idea of what a store truly was like in those days. As the years go by, I will be listing my treasures on Ruby Lane, so, you might want to keep an eye on my shop there. Treasures can be had today..not reprints, but the true actual items of yesterday's world. They say one cannot go back into time, but, to this I say, you can hold the past in your hands, and cherish it

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Comment by RC Antiques on September 26, 2009 at 12:16pm
Thanks, actually I've been on Ruby Lane for almost 2 years now , love it. Sold on ebay since 1997, was in their first ebay magazine , was a Power Seller of over 6,000 positive feedbacks...switched to Ruby Lane, and love it love it. Fabulous place to shop and sell, I highly recommend the Ruby Lane site
Comment by nothingnew.junkables on September 26, 2009 at 12:10pm
GOOD LUCK on rl lol
Comment by RC Antiques on September 26, 2009 at 10:33am
You can visit my blog for more great stories and facts about the antiques and collectibles world , RC's Antique Treasure Hunts and More

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