Civil War Relics and Collectibles – Helpful Info
Civil War relics and collectibles have been highly sought items in the past and continue to be today. Perhaps the reason they are so popular is that the civil war affected the entire country in a way that no other war has before or since. In fact, more soldiers died in the Civil War than during any other single American conflict. Most families who have been in America for a few generations have been touched by the Civil War in some way or another.
Resources for Would-Be Collectors
There are many resources in the community at large to find information about collecting Civil War items. Start with a local library or museum to gather information and visit with collectors if you can. Some collectors have made their entire collections of relics available for others to view online. This allows you to browse their collections and learn some of the items’ history.
There are many people who sell Civil War collectibles and relics some do so as a hobby while others have made quite a business doing so. Many dealers in relics have web-based stores and / or “brick and mortar” stores. You can also purchase items from online and offline auctions or other collectors that you meet.
Avoiding Counterfeit Civil War Relics
The fact that these items are highly collectible also means that there are many counterfeit and reproduction items on the market. A collector must be savvy to ensure that the items they purchase are what the seller has claimed them to be. It is a good idea to deal only with a dealer who has extensive experience in selling vintage and historic items. Be sure that they can show the authenticity and provenance of the item. Be wary of those who do not offer a refund policy.
History Becomes Personal
These collectible items offer us an insight into the people who originally used them. They allow us to have our hands on history; to hold and feel history and to know it in a way that isn’t always possible by seeing pictures on-line or viewing recreated movie scenes. Many enthusiasts study the history of their collectibles to find out all that they can about the original owner. Some even go so far as to participate in re-enactments of the war, taking on the persona of a soldier and playing his part in the war. The re-enactments allow spectators to become a part of the war-to see, hear and smell what a battlefield that is literally in their backyard was like.
The history and story behind each of the Civil War collectibles and relics is a piece of the history of America, and maybe even your own family history as well. Owning even one or two of these items will profoundly affect your own interest and knowledge of different aspects of the Civil War. As you become drawn to the owner of the item, you will search out more and more information until you know as much as you possibly can about the person he was and the role he played in shaping history. The words of Rudyard Kipling are timeless and relevant: Lest we forget!