People around the world collect “militaria;” some collect a broad range of artifacts
from a specific war or battle; others limit their collection to items of a particular
type or from a particular country, branch or division. Regardless of the theme of
their individual collections, buyers look for proof of authenticity of reproductions
as well as of original items when deciding whether or not to purchase a piece of
Militaria collectibles are divided into categories first by age — or the war they
are associated with — and then by the nation of origin and/or item type. Original
artifacts are generally worth more than replicated items, but even replicated items
are sought after by re-enactors, especially re-enactors of Civil War battles. Some
original artifacts that are particularly sought after are edged weapons, helmets,
and artillery gear and equipment.
Leading militaria collectibles include:
Online marketplaces have many restrictions that apply to military collectibles.
These items are not allowed:
These items are allowed:
The following websites can help you identify and date your items:
All wars: http://www.militaryitems.com/
Civil War collectibles price guide:
Sword terminology and appraisals:
Military relics that were used in battle might have a lot of damage; even those
that weren’t used might have deteriorated with age, so carefully inspect all items
for the following:
Store items in a well-ventilated room, away from children, pets, smoke and cooking
odors. Never place an item in direct sunlight; cover it with a sheet or better yet,
keep the windows covered. Don’t place an item next to heating vents or air conditioners,
either, since temperature/humidity changes can cause damage.
If an item includes a case, place the item in the case, pack the case in bubble
wrap and place it into a bed of packing peanuts for shipment.
The size and delicacy of a collectible can require special shipping. It’s best to
determine the shipping method in advance and to include an estimate of the total
shipping cost in your listing.