Vintage Resources


VintageResearchResources

A comprehensive list of vintage, antique, and collectible research resources regarding all things vintage.

This list is a perpetual work-in-progress. Make sure to check in frequently for more helpful resources.

 

Vintage Research Resources by Subject


Art

  • Signature Finder – Helpful for identifying artists by their signatures, even if only a fragment of the name can be read.
  • Paint By Number Museum – Includes catalog pages of vintage paint by number kits, as well as articles and photos of finished paint by number paintings. A nice resource for finding the name of a painting, and more.

Books

  • AddALL – A great resource for researching used and out-of-print books.

Cameras

  • Brownie Camera – A website devoted to Brownie cameras. Includes lists of cameras, technical specifications, user manuals, and more.
  • Fellsphoto Vintage Camera Tutorial – Helpful information and terminology regarding vintage cameras and how to describe them.

Cast Iron

  • Cast Iron Collector – A comprehensive and complete guide to collecting cast iron, including care and restoration and other resources.

Clocks

  • Antique Clocks – Identification and price guides for antique clocks. Includes information for dating clocks, history of clocks and clockmakers, and more.

Coins

  • Coin Trackers – Online database of coins and their values. Includes many helpful articles regarding coins and collecting coins.
  • USA Coin Book – Database of coin prices and values based on coin condition. Includes every US coin year, mint and major variety ever made, including images.

Clothing and Fashion

  • Vintage Clothing Definitions – Resource for identifying 20th century vintage clothing and fashions, including articles and photos detailing labels, zippers and other aspects of the garment industry.
  • Fashion Encyclopedia – A large database of fashion styles throughout the ages, and fashion designers.
  • Vintage Fashion Guild – Helpful resources for identifying labels and fashion designers. Includes fashion history and other resources.
  • Retro Fashion History – Includes fashion information by year, including photos and articles. 

Dishes


Ephemera

  • Ephemera Society – Comprehensive resource website for all things ephemera. Includes definitions of ephemera types, photos, news and articles, and more.
  • Postcard Pages – Information regarding the history of postcards, collecting, and buying and selling postcards. Includes links to other resources.

Furniture

  • Furniture Styles – Resource guide for identifying antique furniture and furniture styles. Includes definition of a wide variety of styles.

Glass

  • Early American Pattern Glass Identification – Database of early American patterns in glass and their market value. Helpful for identifying glass.
  • Glass Bottle Marks – Helpful resource for identifying marks on glass bottles. Includes history of glass manufacturing.
  • Glass Encyclopedia – Reference guide and encyclopedia for vintage and antique glass. 
  • Glass Insulators – Database of glass and porcelain insulators. Includes additional resource links.
  • Historic Glass Bottles – Identification and information website for historic glass bottles. Includes information about bottle styles, finishes, and colors.

Globes


Jewelry

  • Costume Jewelry – Information about jewelry and costume jewelry styles.
  • Costume Jewelry Manufacturers and Marks – Helpful resource for identifying jewelry based on manufacturers and their marks. Includes history information and more.
  • Costume Jewelry Marks – Helpful information for researching costume jewelry. Includes information on marks, jewelry history, and more.

Photographs

  • Cartes – Helpful information for dating old photographs and cabinet cards. Includes information for about photographers and the estimated dates of their work.

Pottery and Porcelain

  • Cajun Collection – Information about identifying American pottery, by maker, marks, and other identifiable features.
  • California Pottery – Resource for identifying and learning more about California pottery.
  • Frankoma Pottery – This website includes information and mold numbers for Frankoma pottery. Also includes links to illustrations of Frankoma pieces as a reference.
  • McCoy Pottery – McCoy Pottery Collectors website, includes articles and information regarding McCoy pottery.
  • Poole Pottery – Information and resources regarding Poole pottery.
  • Pottery & Porcelain Marks – Helpful information for identifying pottery and porcelain maker marks.
  • Redwing Pottery – Information and articles about Redwing pottery.
  • Roseville Pottery – This website has information about various Roseville pottery patterns.
  • Shawnee Pottery – Identification and images for Shawnee pottery. Includes links to other resources.

Radios

  • Antique Radio – Information and links to additional resources for everything related to antique radios, including radio museums.
  • Radio Museum – Helpful guide and resource to identifying and finding antique radios and parts.

Records and Record Albums

  • Vinyl Record Fair – Information about pricing and identifying vinyl records.
  • Record Collectors Guild – This website has articles and information about collecting vinyl records, how to price them, where to find them, etc. a Nice resource page.

Sewing

  • International Sewing Machine Collectors – Information and resources for antique and vintage sewing machines and manufacturers.
  • Vintage Sewing Patterns – Research and date vintage sewing patterns through this vintage patterns wikia. Includes illustrations and photos of patterns, as well as information about the manufacturers.

Silver and Silverplate

  • 925-1000 Forum – Information about silver marks, hallmarks, and makers’ marks. Includes photos and links to additional resources.

Souvenirs

  • Souvenir Spoons – A souvenir spoon museum, includes links to spoons, exhibits, and more.

Toys and Games

  • Antique Toys – Includes a toy grading guide, glossary, toy makers, and logos. Excellent site for identifying vintage and antique toys.
  • Game Catalog – Resource for dating vintage games, finding copyrights and patents, includes company catalogs and game playing instructions. Also includes links to websites for game researchers.
  • This Old Toy – A Fisher-Price resources for vintage toys.

Typewriters

  • Virtual Typewriter Museum – Includes information and photos of antique and vintage typewriters, as well as information about them.
  • The Classic Typewriter Page – This website includes history information, resources for vintage and antique typewriters, typewriter manuals, and more.
  • The Typewriter Database – A must see website for researching information about vintage and antique typewriters.

 


General Topic Vintage Resources

Family Search – Search for a deceased ancestor in historical records to uncover vital information from their life.

Find A Grave – Find the graves of ancestors. Very helpful in researching genealogy as the graves often include clues to other family members of the deceased.

Flags of the World – Includes more than 63,000 pages about flags, including more than 126,000 images of flags of countries, organizations, states, territories, districts and cities, both past and present.

Gallery of Graphic Design – Excellent database of vintage magazine ads from a wide variety of magazines.

Made in Chicago Museum – Includes an industrial history of all things made in Chicago. A resource for researching vintage and antiques.

Office Museum – Includes research on the history and evolution of offices, antique office machines and equipment, and business technology based on original documents, artifacts, and vintage photographs.

Real or Repo? – This website from Ruby  Lane helps you identify real or reproductions of vintage and antique finds, all organized by category.

Roman Numeral Converter – Helpful tool for converting Roman numerals found on vintage and antique items into modern day numbers.

The People History – Features information related to historical events, popular culture, music, fashion, toys, sports, and much more from the 1800s up to the present. A nice research resource.

Tradmarkia – Search vintage trademarks to help you identify vintage items and their dates.

US Patent Dates – A variety of 19th and 20th century American antiques, jewelry and collectibles are marked with the patent number identifying the year that the object was patented. A helpful reference website.

Vintage Machinery – Includes manufacturers of vintage machinery, as well as photos, articles and resources, and a serial number registry.

 


Antique Appraisals and Information

Antique Marks – General reference for antique marks, including pottery marks, porcelain marks, and everything antique or collectible.

Antiques Roadshow – From the television show, you can search their appraisal archives to see if they have featured something you are researching.

Bath Antiques – Includes a free searchable antiques price guide with thousands of rare antiques and novelty collector’s items – each pictured, described and with their price guide.

Collectors Weekly – Lots of news and information about collectibles of all kinds. Website updated often.

Country Living – What is It? What’s It Worth? – Experts in antiques from the leading auction houses in the country determine the value of your favorite collectible or prized family heirloom for free. Look through past articles to see if something you have has already been appraised.

Dr. Lori Antique Appraiser – This website has articles and information for antique appraisals and so much more. New articles added frequently.

Kovels – Information about antiques and collectibles. Includes many articles and news information. Website updated frequently.

Price4Antiques – Has a searchable database of past auction prices for antiques, collectibles and fine art. Helpful for obtaining pricing information.

 


Newspaper Articles and Archives

Elephind – Search over 2 million world’s digital newspapers for articles and pages

Library of Congress, Chronically America – Search over 10.5 million pages from 43 states

 


Recommended Books

Warman’s Antiques & Collectibles (2018) – This book is filled with full-color images along with descriptions and prices. The selections change from book to book, and the book is updated yearly. Categories include everything from antique glassware, ceramics, and furniture to more trendy pop culture collectibles and “mantiques.”

Antique Trader Antiques & Collectibles Price Guide 2017 – This book is updated yearly and contains color photos and background information on a wide variety of collectibles. 

Kovels’ Antiques and Collectibles Price List 2017 – This book includes over 32,000 listings of collectibles and antiques and their prices. 

Miller’s Antiques Handbook & Price Guide 2016-2017 – A comprehensive illustrated guide to antiques from around the world.

 

 

If you have research resources you think should be added to this list, please contact us!

Last updated May 9, 2017