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The World’s Dullest Postcards

More than a million vintage postcards are listed for sale on AbeBooks showing everything from pre-revolution Cuba to Zaire. Spectacular buildings, stunning views, and amazing natural wonders are easy to find. But we were drawn to the picture postcards showing some of the dullest imagery imaginable. Empty rooms, administrative buildings, views of busy highways and […]

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Stand firm & carry on: Churchill’s 1940 instruction leaflet on surviving the German invasion

April 1940. Britain’s darkest hour as the country braced for invasion by German forces. Prime Minister Winston Churchill took the extraordinary step of printing and distributing 14 million leaflets, titled Beating the Invader, featuring instructions on what to do when German troops reached British soil. The key messages were quintessential Churchill – “Stand firm” and […]

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In Pictures: the First American Divorcee to Marry a British Royal

Meghan Markle is not the first divorced American to marry into the Royal Family. In 1936, King Edward VIII revealed that he intended to marry an American socialite and divorcee, and this sensational news rocked Britain, taking the country to the brink of a constitutional crisis. Wallis Simpson was the Baltimore-born woman at the eye […]

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How the West was regulated – a Dodge City license for prostitution in 1876

This remarkable document sold via AbeBooks.com yesterday – a license for prostitution issued by the authorities in Dodge City, Kansas, on 10 March 1876. The girl, named as Laura Belle, paid $2.50 every three months and had to post the license in her room above the saloon where she conducted her business. Take a closer […]

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Mark Your Calendars: Washington Antiquarian Book Fair April 28-29

Immerse yourself in the world rare books and ephemera at the 42nd annual Washington Antiquarian Book Fair, taking place April 28-29 at the Sphinx Club in Washington, DC. This year, over 60 exhibitors from all over the United States will be displaying rare books, manuscripts, modern first editions, autographs, prints, maps, drawings and other fine […]

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Coming Up: Florida Antiquarian Book Fair – April 21-23

“For book lovers, it’s Paradise.” That’s the tagline of the Florida Antiquarian Book Fair, the oldest antiquarian fair in the Southeastern United States and the third largest in the nation. Hosted by the Florida Antiquarian Booksellers Association, the event is taking place for its 36th year this April 21-23 at the historic Coliseum in St. […]

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“Room for Millions of Immigrants” – railroad pamphlet from 1883 shows how American life has changed

A scarce 1883 pamphlet promoting California as a destination for immigrants has been listed for sale on AbeBooks.com. It show how immigrants were once courted in the US. “California, the Cornucopia of the World” was written by I.N. Hoag for the Southern Pacific Railroad, and was distributed to immigrants who had already reached the East […]

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What is ephemera?

Ever wondered what the word ‘ephemera’ means? You may have heard it mentioned in used bookshops or in connection with something that seems old and paper-related. Well, our latest YouTube video provides the exact definition.

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Collecting Nostalgia: Vintage Christmas Memorabilia

With its time-honored traditions, sacred recipes passed down through generations and emphasis on family and friends, few areas of life lend themselves so well to nostalgia as Christmas. Of the families who celebrate Christmas, everyone does it a little bit differently. My husband’s family are Cuban, and celebrate “Noche Buena” on December 24th, opening all […]

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“Disneyana” – Walt Disney Collectibles and Souvenirs

  You may not know the term “Disneyana” yet, but you probably know somebody obsessed with it. Maybe they feverishly collect Disneyland souvenirs like collectible Disney mugs, or vintage Disney park guides, maps and tickets. Or perhaps they have a tattoo of Tinkerbell, and an apartment full of vintage Tinkerbell Disney memorabilia to match. They’d […]

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