How to determine the value of old newspapers

obama wins ny times

obama wins ny times

This Obama Wins NYT sold for $177.50 on November 6th, 2008 on eBay!

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One of the questions I’m asked often is, “how much are old newspapers worth”?

More values for old newspapers here

But newspapers are one of those collectibles in which age usually has very little or nothing to do with value. Almost all of newspaper’s value is determined by whether or not it features a major news event. For example the sinking of the Titanic, when Babe Ruth hit 60 home runs, or the Obama Wins newspaper pictured in this article which sold for $177.50 on eBay.

Second in order of importance is scarcity. Yes you need a major news event, but if there are still a couple of million copies of it because it’s a recent event, IE: the Boston Red Sox winning the World Series, then it’s not so valuable unless, demand out does supply, which is what has happened with the Obama wins newspapers.

Most likely, the demand will cool down and prices for these Obama papers will level off, but not until the market has it’s say.

It is estimated that over 98% of all newspapers do not contain a major world event on the front page, so you see scarcity comes into play again.

Newspapers that do not have major world event, those that account for the 98% are called atmosphere papers.

Most antique atmosphere papers run in the $3-$10.00 range.

Major event papers vary, but a few examples are:

  • 1882, Jesse James Killed $350.
  • NY times April 16, 1912, the first account of the sinking of the Titanic $400.00
  • 1937 Hindenburg explodes, $75.00.
  • 1961 Alan Shepard 1st astronaut in space, $30.00