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Scenes from the past draw collectors to show.

Byline: Jim Feehan The Register-Guard

Mac Johnson of Elmira sells memories one postcard at a time.

Vintage postcards tell the story of a community and its people. They can also be a treasure trove for history buffs.

The postcards "evoke a sentimental chord in people's minds," said Johnson, one of 44 vendors specializing in collectibles who displayed their wares Sunday at a show in Wheeler Pavilion at the Lane Events Center.

About 300 people pored through bins of old postcards, photographs, maps, magazines, newspapers and countless other collectibles at the Northwest Collectibles and Antique Paper show.

Sometimes such items fetch a pretty hefty price.

Johnson said a woman who lives on New York City's fashionable Park Avenue paid him $891 for a 1938 Del Mar race track program.

"Seabiscuit was racing in the fourth race, and she just had to have it," Johnson said of the program, which he sold on e-Bay earlier this year.

Some of the collectibles on display Sunday, and their asking prices, include:

A 1950 photo of the Eugene-Springfield Larks minor league baseball team, $35.

A program from the 1932 Summer Olympics held in Los Angeles, $45.

A Seattle Post-Intelligencer newspaper special edition on Nov. 22, 1963, the day of President Kennedy's assassination, $8.

A 1972 campaign button for the Democratic presidential ticket of George McGovern and Sargent Shriver, $3.

Quite often, dealers come by collectibles during estate sales, or when family members contact them after a parent dies and leaves behind a house filled with memorabilia, said Glenn Mason, a Portland collectibles dealer and director of the Lane County Museum from 1970 to 1982.

"It's not necessarily old (items), but whatever is desirable," Mason said.

For example, the 2002 Christmas catalog for trendy clothing chain Abercrombie & Fitch sells for $20. German model Heidi Klum appeared seminude on the cover.

Meanwhile, Seattle collectibles dealer Michael Fairley has a collection of 24 photographs of circumcised women from Cameroon from the early 20th century. The package set, located in a display case next to nude pinup photos and World War I propaganda postcards, sold for $75.

"I'm into the esoteric," Fairley said.

Tim Boardman, a nurse from Gresham, was looking for old postmarked letters and cards from the Washington Territory. Boardman's prized catch from Sunday's show was an 1881 postmark from Clenton, a 19th-century town near present-day Pullman, Wash.

"The town no longer exists - in fact, the post office existed only from 1879 to 1890," he said. Boardman paid $200 for the card, but said he figures he can sell the ghost town postmark for about $350.

CAPTION(S):

A postcard from 1908 or 1909 features three generations of women with the family dog.
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Title Annotation:General News; Hundreds turn out to peruse bins of paper collectibles at Lane Events Center
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Jun 21, 2004
Words:446
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