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©Copyright 2011-2018 Eric Wrobbel



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COLLECTING:
A rationale

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Another thing just not right is the concept of collectibles as investments. Those who collect for the love of the thing have generally come out all right over time financially. But those who are all about the money usually have nothing to show for mucking about in the “collectibles market” but capital losses. Plus, they’re a pain to talk to. All they want to know is “how much is it worth?” They see only dollar signs while the true collector sees with the eyes of a kid on Christmas morning.

Collectible pin from Sears Roebuck & Co. Probably an employee pin c.1940. From 'Collecting: A Rationale' at the web's largest private collection of antiques & collectibles: https://www.ericwrobbel.com/collections/rationale-2.htm

Now that I’ve apologized for collecting and needled the non-believers, let me go further by staking a claim for the respectability of collecting.

Collecting tells the truth. Despite the warning of Edmund Burke (“Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it”), many of the powers-that-be seem bent on obscuring history. Whether for profit or other motives, the rich and the poor, liberal and conservative all seem to feel that history needs a little tweaking to better present their views.

Vendo 44 Coca-Cola vending machine model 44. Most Coke machines are huge and would be out of place in most home settings. But this little guy fits right in, even in a kitchen. From 'Collecting: A Rationale' at the web's largest private collection of antiques & collectibles: https://www.ericwrobbel.com/collections/rationale-2.htm

Collecting helps dig the truth out from under all the half-remembered and dis-remembered facts of the past. Collecting shows us things as they actually were. This often comes as quite a surprise, and sometimes an embarrassment.

The collector fills the same essential role in the keeping of history as a museum or an archive—all guardians of the truth against the self-interest of those who would sacrifice genuine progress to their own advantage. If all this sounds a little confusing (not to mention pretentious!), I invite you to look for illumination in the several examples you’ll find within these pages.

Vintage antique Elgin pocket watch. From 'Collecting: A Rationale' at the web's largest private collection of antiques & collectibles: https://www.ericwrobbel.com/collections/rationale-2.htm

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