Unlike philately, Scouting memorabilia collecting has never developed a formalized system of expertization or grading. I currently serve on the expertization committee of the National Stamp Dealers Association. At an earlier period in the history of stamp collecting, purchasers relied upon the reputation of a stamp dealer, or the advice of other knowledgeable collectors. This system was supplemented by the practice of well known experts writing their names in light pencil on the back of a stamp or philatelic item. The modern practice is to submit an item to an expertizing service and receive a written certificate for the item. Such certificates greatly enhance the marketability of an item, especially in mail auctions.
The written certificate issued on a philatelic item indicates the item's identity (usually its catalog number), and its condition, or more accurately - any flaws in condition. Upon request, you can also have your stamp graded (which expresses an opinion on centering, faults, color, ad general condition and "eye appeal". The certificate includes a photograph of the item, with a duplicate of the certificate maintained by the expertizing serve for reference. The certificate indicates that it does not guarantee the information contained - indeed, it represents the opinion of the members on the services committee. The system of certificates works well, with a few problems. They are expensive, usually 10-15% of the value of the item. Some examples of faked certificates have emerged, as well as some bribery and politicization of some issues.
Having collected Scouting memorabilia for over 40 years, I have gained a good knowledge of most of the fakes and reproductions in general circulation. I also have a good reference collection of OA, CSP, Region, National and World Jamboree and other areas of Scout collecting which have been the most common subjects of fakery. I have also had a great deal of experience in valuing Scouting memorabilia. Consequently, I would like to offer expertization, identification and appraisal services to YOU.
Procedure for Expertization, Identification or Appraisal of Individual Items.
1. Send me a photocopy of the front and back of the item in question, plus $5, or 5% of the value of the item, whichever is greater. If I purchase any item submitted for appraisal, expertization or identification, the fee will be waived.
2. I will issue an opinion based on the photocopy by endorsing an opinion on your copy. If the quality of the copy is not sufficient to issue an opinion, I will request the actual item be sent to me insured, along with sufficient payment to return it to you insured. If you would like an opinion on grade, I will need to see the actual item.
3. I reserve the right to withhold opinion on any item.
4. All opinions will be issued within 10 days of receipt of an item.
5. All opinions are simply that, my opinion, and I assume no responsibility for any item proving to have been altered, faked, or misidentified.
Purchasing of Collections and Individual Items
I am always looking for Scout and Philatelic Memorabilia to purchase. Please e-mail me at email@example.com or mail me a list of what you may want to sell, and let me make you an offer. My mailing address is Kirk Doan, 1201 Walnut Steet, Suite 2300, Kansas City, MO 64106. My internet address is http://www.kirkdoan.com.
This page last updated 07/26/13.
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