Information for Collectors

WWII Posters
WWII Posters
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Information for Collectors

The following information will be of use to individuals wishing to purchase vintage WW II posters and military literature or to determine the value of posters and memorabilia they already own. The information has been compiled from answers to e-mail questions sent to various rare book dealer and librarian discussion groups. Northwestern University has no affiliation with any of the organizations mentioned on this page.

Buying or Appraising Vintage Posters

There are a great many books describing and listing estimated prices for ephemera. The following may be of use:

  • Fusco, Tony. The Official Identification and Price Guide to Posters. New York: House of Collectibles, 1990.
  • Martinus, Norman and Harry Rinker. Warman's Paper. Radnor, Pa. : Wallace-Homestead Book Co., 1994.
  • Theofiles, George. American Posters of World War I: A Price Collectors Guide. New York : Dafran House, 1973
  • Theran, Susan. Prints, posters and Photographs: Identification and Price Guide.New York : Avon Books, 1993.
  • Theran, Susan and Kathryn Acebo (eds.). Leonard's Annual Price Guide of Prints, Posters and Photographs.

If you wish to buy an original poster or if you have a collection the value of which you wish to determine, you should contact a specialist dealer. Remember that if you are inquiring about value, the dealer may have to spend some time researching the material and some may charge for the service.

Poster and Military Ephemera Dealers

These links and lists are by no means exhaustive.

Antique Paper & Ephemera X-change and Paper Collectors' Marketplace
[links to dealers of posters and military ephemera]

David Pollack Vintage Posters
207 Rte 37 South
Sherman, CT 06784
Phone: 860-210-9822

George Theofiles
Miscellaneous Man
Box 1776
New Freedom, PA 17349
(717) 235-4766

Meehan Military Posters [original, vintage]
P.O. Box 477, Gracie Station
New York, NY 10028 USA
Phone: (212) 734-5683

Pacific Image Archive [World War II poster reproductions]
P.O. Box 31328
Honolulu, Hawaii 96820

Popular Archives [features World War I & II poster reproductions]
5648 Walnut Ave Suite #1B
Downers Grove, IL 60516
(630) 969-6128

Rare Posters [authentic World War I & II posters dealer; site includes many poster images]
Gary Borkan, Box 870, Melrose, MA 02176
For questions email or call (781) 662-5757 (9AM-8PM EST).

Used and Rare Book Dealers

While few book dealers handle military posters and other printed ephemera, most are a wealth of information and those who specialize in military literature probably know someone who does. The following approaches should lead to something:

  1. Contact a good local used and rare book dealer in your area. If they cannot help you, ask if there is a directory of local booksellers. Dealers often belong to a regional association which puts out a subject guide to members. There should be a military specialist in your area.
  2. Check your local library for one of the numerous guides and directories of used and antiquarian book dealers. There may also be guides to antique ephemera and collectibles dealers.
  3. (For Americans) Contact the Antiquarian Booksellers' Association of North America or go to their web page at While most of the dealers handle more high end material, they are a knowledgeable group and one of your local members may lead you to someone able to sell you material or to appraise what you own.
  4. Post a request to a book dealer e-mail listserv or bulletin board, such as the ABAA Discussion Board. Another remarkably rich source is Steve Trussel's Books and Book Collecting site at Page 2 of his used books section lists a variety of web resources including discussion lists.
  5. Try some of the major used book sale sites where dealers list their inventory in one big database. Some of the sites referred to above will link you to the major ones.

Please remember: If you choose to enlist the help of book and ephemera dealers but you're not interested in buying anything, they are doing you a favor. At Northwestern, we are paid to assist users of our collection. Dealers are not but they frequently share information as a service to the public.