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Why Collect Postcards?


We hear it's the third largest collectible hobby in the world! If you’ve saved more than 3 postcards, then congratulations – you’re a postcard collector! Postcards have been around for a long time, cover innumerable subjects and can be very affordable. Some of the earliest postcards date back to the 1860s. Do you have any that old? How about some from your 6th grade family vacation, your favorite restaurant, or your senior class trip?
Most of us collect postcards out of nostalgia – to reminisce about a certain time or a certain place.  Historians use them to interpret the history of a town or place, and some genealogists use them to help document family histories.  Still others have used postcard images for creating note cards, invitations, bulletin boards, store displays, etc. One passionate collector even used postcards to wallpaper her powder room! The possible uses of postcards are endless and are limited only by your imagination.
For some, postcard collecting is all about the thrill of the hunt - whether it’s the perfect one or as many as possible. Whatever postcards you decide to collect - be creative and have fun! Postcards were meant to be used and spread around the world. 




Suggestions for Collecting Postcards

1. Start by figuring out what kind of postcards you want to collect. Your favorite things? Places you've been? Your home town? Local postmarks? Amusement parks?  Bears?

Tell people you know what kind of postcards you're collecting. Postcards are plentiful and affordable, and you will quickly recognize that it won't take a long time before you have assembled an admirable collection.

If you decide to take a more sincere interest in collecting postcards, then consider joining the Washington Crossing Card Collectors Club – or a local club in your area.  You can also browse through antique stores, flea markets, online auctions, and go to the Washington Crossing Card Collectors Club meeting in Titusville, New Jersey on the 2nd Monday evening of every month!

Protect your cards using acid-free, archival-quality sleeves or pocket pages made of Mylar or polyethylene. Stay away from PVC and inexpensive plastic sleeves and pages, which will stick to your cards and leave marks on them.  And by the way – the Washington Crossing Card Collectors Club sells discounted postcard sleeves and pocket pages, plus other supplies, at our monthly meetings.

Display and store your postcards in a dry location and out of direct sunlight. They can and will fade. Do not use paperclips or rubber bands, as they will destroy the image over time. The best places to store your cards are in archival quality boxes and albums or 3-ring binders/notebooks.  However, before you begin to panic about the storage of your postcards, remember that some have survived nearly 100 years in old deteriorating postcard albums. Yours probably will survive many more years with just a reasonable amount of care, but only archival protection will preserve them indefinitely.

Show your postcard collections to your family and friends, and share the wealth by sending or passing along special cards to special people.  It could make a big impact and leave a lasting impression!