Any publication meant to serve as a resource for those interested in learning about or collecting a specific type of item is considered a collectors book. As long as people have been collecting, printed guides to popular items have been produced by a variety of sources, from major publishers to individual enthusiasts, detailing a particular subject’s history and common pricing. Many older, out-of-print guides are especially desirable because they contain images or information no longer covered in current publications.

By the late 19th and early 20th century, public interest in history and antique objects had grown enough to inspire a steady supply of text-heavy books on the subject, with titles like “Furniture of the Olden Time” or “The Practical Book of Chinaware.” Terry Kovel’s earliest price guide, “The Complete Antiques Price List” was printed in 1967, and became the first book to be compiled with the aid of emerging computer technology.

As printing machinery improved, collectors books incorporated full-color photographs instead of drawings, etchings, or textual descriptions of collectibles. Time-Life released its classic “Encyclopedia of Collectibles” in 1978, alphabetically covering the field in 16 volumes running from A to Z. The following year, Judith Miller published her first “Antiques Price Guide,” and has since expanded Miller’s Publications to a global brand, producing books on all major collectible categories. In the 1980s, the venerable Knopf publishing house began releasing its own series of “Collector’s Guides” covering everything from silver and pewter to toys and dolls.

Today, there are several prolific publishers, like Krause Publications, Schroeder’s, and Warman’s, who create in-depth collectible guides on disparate subjects ranging from jewelry to radios to tractors. Many provide minimal historical context, and focus instead on the details important to true collectors already versed in a subject, like an item’s production date, materials, and market price. While values in the real world may fluctuate wildly, these books are indispensable for collectors hoping to compile a reference library on their favorite collectible topics.

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Spot-on Diecast Models By Triang - A Catalogue & Collectors Guide - Thompson Antique Books - Gone With The Wind International Collectors Library 1964Collector's Guide To Tonka Trucks 1947-1963 By Don Desalle (1999, Paperback1979 Easton Press Collectors Addition The Last Of The Mohicans James Fenimore C.Collector's Guide To Colt .45 Service Pistols BookSchiffer Uniforms Of The Waffen-ss / 3 Vol. Set / Like-new Zippo, The Great American Lighter, Book, David Poore, Collectors Guide,Atlas Shrugged Vol I & Il - The Fountainhead Int. Collectors Library Ayn Rand8" Vintage 1950's Old Cottage Victorian Girl Felt & Cotton Doll &collectors BookUnited States Type Coin Collectors BookMarble Encyclopedia Knives Sporting Collectibles Safety Axe Canoe Knife SheathDisney Snow White & Seven Dwarfs Pins Set Collectors & Book / Km / 1 Set / $ /Tori Amos Book - Collectibles By Paul Campbell - Omnibus 1997 Collector's GuideInternational Collectors Library -complete Stories- Edgar Allan Poe1987 Girl Scout Collector's Guide 75 Years Of Uniforms, PublicationsCorkscrews For Collectors Homer D. Babbidge Bernard M. Watney 1981 CorkscrewMilitary Badge Collecting By John GaylorWarhammer 40k - Chaos Space Marine Collectors Guide - Good Condition3 Soldier Books The Collectors Guide To Toy Soldiers Tradition Model SoldiersOld Florida Pottery Book Collectors Guide To History Makers Marks 1859-1966 HcdjAntique Toy Trains The Hobby Of Collecting Old Toy Trains Howard Godel2 Jim Beam Price Guide Collecting Guide Books 1942 Transactions Of The Institution Of Naval Architects Collectors Book Vol.84Playboy Vintage 1964 Full Complete Year Old Rare Collectors Nude Women Philatelic Bulletin December 1974 Stamp Collectors Book Very Good ConditionCountry Home Magazine Americana Decorating W Antiques 19991966 Matchbox Lesney Catalog Usa Edition Collector's Guide With Some HandwritingSlam Magazine Jordan Sneakers Collectors Issue 1 And 2 Covers Air Jordan I To XiLincolniana Signed By Famous Abe Lincoln Collectors & Authors! International Collectors Library The Old Curiosity Shop By DickensCollectors Encyclopedia Of Depression Glass Fourteenth Edition Gene FlorenceBlack Ethic Collectibles Magazine For The Black Memorabilia Collector 1988 Assassins Creed 4 Black Flag Collector's Guide Strategy Book Guide Hard CoverAdvertising Character Collectibles : An Ident. And Value Guide, Great ResourceCollector's Guide To Shawnee PotteryCoin Collecting For Kids Collect 50 Statehood Quarters And More Board BookCollector's Guide To Tootsie Toys Second EditionImperial Glass Company Collector's Guide