Notes from the Past

Auction Improvement Suggestions

Editor's Introduction:  The following reports one of the results of a survey  of stamp collectors throughout the United States in response to 25,000 questionnaires sent out in 1939 regarding stamp auctions.

In suggestions for improvements in the auction catalogs the following list is in order of importance:

  • More accurate descriptions of the stamps offered.
  • Terms used in describing condition of the stamps should be standardized in all catalogs.
  • More illustrations should be included, especially of the stamps of higher value.
  • The market value of the stamps offered should be stated in place of the catalog price.
  • Prices realized at previous auctions should be appear.
  • Large lots should be broken down, particularly those that have stamps of high value.
  • Catalogers should not use such optimistic terms in describing certain stamps.
  • Space should be provided to allow jotting down bid prices realized at the auction.
  • The term "Superb" should be omitted in describing condition of the stamp.
  • A reserve bid should be inserted on high grade material.
  • Priced catalogs should be given bidders when requested.
  • Catalogs should be better printed.
  • Forgeries should be weeded out and better grade stamps expertised.
  • English catalogs should use Scott numbers for American bidders.
  • Listing of mint stamps should be kept separate from used stamps.
  • - from "Philatelic Auction Survey"
    The Stamp Specialist Volume 1 Part I
    November, 1939
    H. L. Lindquist, Editor and Publisher

    Posted August 8, 1999

    Editor's Note:  It sounds like today, doesn't it?

    Index of 508 Notes from the Past

    Note:  If the link isn't returned the first try, try again.

    Comments? Send me an e-mail
    Please include a reference to this item.