As I was going thru my mothers things I found and article written by you from June 1998 regarding coin collections. Can you give me an update? I have coins dating back to the 1800's.

I also have lots of postage stamps (boxes!). I found a website titled, "I inherited a stamp collection, now what". I will never be bored with this project in front of me!!

Thank you,

Terry Says:

Well, it looks like you’re in for a lot of fun.  And just maybe, there is something valuable in either of those collections.  Philately (stamp collecting) has gone out of style these days.  No stamps on emails (but problems with servers)!   But you’ll learn a lot at the website of the American Philatelic Society (  And you can search for a reputable appraiser there.

When it comes to coins, there are a few dealers in the Chicago area I trust.  I’m betting that even tough the column your mother clipped was nearly 20 years old, I recommended Harlan J. Berk Coin    dealers on Clark St in downtown Chicago.  I’ve known and trusted them for that long.

Every dealer is going to charge you an appraisal fee.  And they should do the appraisal right in front of you — although you may sit there for hours!  It will help if you have the coins and stamps properly sorted and organized.