Contrary to popular belief, the age of a newspaper has very little to do directly with the value. Astute collectors are well aware that it is possible to purchase an authentic Canadian newspaper from the 1800’s for as little as $25, or an original late 1600’s British newspaper for under $25, while an original December 7, 1941 Honolulu Star-Bulletin sells for from $200 to as much as $700.
So what determines desirability?
- Papers having front-page coverage of a major event (i.e., WWI, Man Lands on Moon, Election Day Results, etc.) are the most sought after
- Engraving in newspapers (sketches, illustrations and advertising art – particularly if an artist later achieves notoriety)
- First issues (i.e., Volume I, Issue I) of a paper
- Condition (this aspect can gravely affect value)
On the whole Newspaper collecting is a relatively new hobby, one which is gaining in popularity daily as more Canadians discover the richness of this neglected aspect of our heritage.
The oldest newspaper in Canada began publication in 1752 as the Halifax Gazette. The first issue is dated March 23rd, 1752. History has it that the world’s first newspaper was printed in 1605 in Germany. Now if you had a copy of that first issue I would be more than happy to recant what I had said earlier about age not being a factor in determining value.