Stocks and bonds in and of themselves are fascinating. Whether simply preserved in binders or framed and displayed openly, certificates have tremendous collectible appeal, which stands alone as far as intrinsic interest and beauty are concerned. The field as a collecting entity draws a great deal of its strength and popularity from this very point.
One obvious area of collateral material is published books. Issue Number 4 of the LaBarre Newsletter dealt exclusively with the “Scripophilist’s Library,” discussing in detail many reference sources, narrative histories, and personal accounts related to American financial history. Selections for a personal library of stock and bond-related materials are nearly unlimited.
However, books are but one possibility. Engravings or lithographs of famous financiers, photographs, correspondence, and catalogs are others. Within each such broad category, a host of even more specific materials may be chosen – maps, railroad timetables and passes, company histories, and newspaper clippings, to name but a few.
Collateral materials provide added depth to a stock and bond collection. Collateral items may illuminate an especially noteworthy, but relatively unknown, aspect of a stock or bond, making it even more exciting to you the collector or to those who view your collection. New direction for collecting may be provided by some scrap of information gleaned from the search for collateral material, too.
Another excellent example of collateral material would be an item like the American Bank Note Company’s annual report. As the world’s premier engraver of financial documents (such as stocks and bonds) for many years, the ABN Co is an integral part of scripophily. The company’s annual report is beautifully produced with dozens of stunning black and white, and color, engraving examples on both front and back covers. Inside, brief information on current production, income, and future developments make interesting reading. Several beautiful full-color pages of foreign currency examples are also worth noting. This annual report is a “natural” collateral piece. And the price is right –it can be obtained free of charge merely by writing the company at 70 Broad Street, New York, NY 10004.
All of these possibilities enhance the dimensions of a collection considerably, making collateral material an exciting offshoot to pursue by the scripophilist.
Originally Published and Printed by G.Labarre, The LaBarre Newsletter, Issue 6, Spring 1982