AE Monthly

Articles - April - 2008 Issue

The May Issue of the Comet Announced: Pamphlets, Broadsides and Ephemera

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The May Comet: A focused way to buy and sell


By Bruce McKinney

The subject of the May issue of the Comet will be Pamphlets, Broadsides and Ephemera. It is one of the great breakthrough collecting areas in the internet era. This type of material has typically received less attention from bibliographers because of its insubstantial nature and lack of accessible information. For many years shows have been the primary venue for its purchase as such material has typically required visual examination. To the knowing buyer tell-tale indications often make all the difference.

The internet is increasingly transforming the market for items that rely on visual contact. Hence, searches of the complete texts of broadsides and ephemera often include what poker players call the "tell," the seemingly unimportant information that attracts a buyer or buyers for whom such information places the item in their collecting/purchasing context. This was all but impossible before and today becomes increasingly easy and widely understood.

The May issue of the Comet presents challenges to both buyers and sellers. For the seller it is the struggle to place material in a context that resides half way between conjucture and fact. For the collector it is often the deconstruction of the story. It's not easy for either but is rewarding for both.

Per usual all premium services members are eligible to list up to seven items in the Comet. There are no commissions. Images are always important, for ephemera essential. We will email all eligible members on April 15th and close the catalogue on April 29th. Links to upload are provided on Member Control Panels via "Contribute Material to the Next Issue of the Comet."

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