Ephemera is the word collectors use to describe all manner of transitory items from early advertising to Victorian scrap. In fact, it turns out that many of our ancestors were apparently pack rats and a surprising amount of supposedly ephemeral items have survived into the 21st Century in perfect condition.
In 1977 I happened upon an old postcard with a picture of a dog with a camera. I was so taken with this image that I began searching out similar postcards showing photographers at work. Postcards quickly led me to paper collectibles of all kinds and I soon was spending my weekends at out-of-the way shows such as Paper Mania in Hartford, Connecticut and Paper Chase in Hackensack, N.J., tracking down images of photographers, especially women, with their cameras.
The Internet, especially eBay, has allowed me to pursue my addiction from home. For me, the challenge of the hunt and the thrill of a new discovery never diminishes whether on-line or in person. Unlike, stamps which are a known quantity, ephemeral items are uncatalogued. Like buried treasure, not knowing exactly what's out there only adds to the excitement of a great find.