So long as time has its way with the world, there will always be such a thing as antiques, precious items that represent a previous age of human society. And so long as there are antiques, there will always be those who know how to appreciate and care for such items, collectors who often spend their whole lives collecting antiques from the annals of history. These rare and aged items come in many different forms and sizes, and one such type, antique marbles, is a testament to man’s enduring appreciation of different traditions, as the history of collecting marbles dates far back into ancient Chinese and Egyptian culture.
This article deals with properly identifying antique marbles, but before you follow the step by step process listed below, make sure that you own, or are willing to purchase the following materials: a circle template, an eye loupe, as well as the ‘Marble Collectors Handbook’ by Robert S. Block. It is also recommended that you have ring trays or marble suitcases to store your marble collection.
- The first and most important thing you need to remember is not to overwhelm yourself. There are many, many different kinds of antique marbles and it is best if you just concentrate on a single element. Research on the kind you want to focus on, whether it be the German marbles from the nineteenth century, or the antiques that originate from Akron, Ohio. Afterwards, simply set your sights on a certain type of marble you’re interested in, and go from there.
- There is a wide range of communities, forums and websites with a wealth of information on marbles. Familiarize yourself with everything there is to know by searching for and joining the aforementioned forums on the Internet, attending shows (such as the Orange County Marble Show) and mingling with other marble collectors.
- Remember to inspect antique marbles thoroughly before you make any purchase. You can measure an antique marble’s size using a circle template, using it along with your handbook to identify pattern, as well as its value through the grading system. You should also inspect it for scratches, nicks or chips using an eye loupe as there is no reason to pay more for an antique marble with a depreciated value.
- Finally, store the marbles in a ring tray or marble suitcase to keep your collection safe and secure. Jars may be a good way to keep normal marbles, but you should never store antique marbles in this manner. You can also maintain its quality by hiring a professional for routine polishing and repair if necessary.
If you have followed all of these simple steps and are ready to keep
investing time and money on this respectable hobby, then
congratulations, you have learned to identify and collect antique
marbles. Eventually, you will be able to expand your collection and
focus on other marble types. Soon enough, you will earn the respect of
fellow marble collectors everywhere, and you will find that not only do
you gain a certain satisfaction from antique marble collecting, but also
something else—something priceless—from the friendships and bonds you
have made and continue to make in the marble collecting community.