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Chapter IX: Autograph Values

This issue has become a problem for new collectors. There are autograph price guides available but even a current one is basically outdated by time it reaches your hands. Get on the mailing list of dealers who issue catalogs. This is a good way of getting a basic idea of what things are worth and you may see something you want to add to your collection. Occasionally, you may find the near identical signature for twice the amount of money elsewhere. There are reasons for this as one dealer may be working out of their home and the other has the expenses of a shop or office in a high profile area. A dealer could be a one person operation, the other may have an employee or two. When you make up your mind that there is a certain signature you want to obtain, call a few dealers and ask if they have the signature and what they are charging for the item. Most professionals should be quite close on price. Keep one thing always in mind and that is if you see a signature of Lincoln which you know should sell for $3500-4500 and it is being sold by a dealer or available in an auction for $1500 run as fast as you can. There are few bargains with any quality material. If the item was genuine, everyone who wants a genuine Lincoln signature will be bidding. It will always sell for close to what it is worth. Just about every single time someone comes to me bragging about what a great bargain they got at auction, the item tends to be fake. They got a bargain because those who knew the item was not genuine did not bid!
Chapter X: Preserving Your Collection (Continued)